Iceland Diplomatic Passport – Wife Of Minister

Iceland’s passports are already difficult to find, but an Iceland Diplomatic is most rare and this one comes full of visas and stamps, issued to Gudrun Gislason, the wife of former cabinet minister Gylfi Gislason. Her passport was issued in 1971, then three times extended, and expired in 1980. Iceland Diplomatic Passport

Great visas and stamps showing the frequent travel as a diplomat’s wife. Several diplomatic visas from Poland and the Soviet Union (which are most rare), further East Germany, UK, Czech Republic, Netherlands, Greece, Portugal, West Germany, and Denmark.

This Iceland Diplomatic passport is in excellent condition, but the spine has some imperfection, so a few pages are taped. However, the document is overall in very collectible condition and the failures are not really disturbing for such a precious collectible.


Icelandic economist and politician of Pari. 1946-1978; Central Committee Social-Democratic Party 1942, Secretary 1946-1965; Board of Governors Iceland Bank of Development 1953-1966, Development Fund of Iceland 1966-1971, National Theatre 1954-1987; Icelandic Science Society; Nordic Council 1971-1978.

Gislason was born on February 7, 1917, in Reykjavík. Son of Thorsteinn Gislason and Thdrunn Palsdottir. Lecturer of Economics, University of Iceland 1941-1946, Professor 1946-1956. Minister of Education and Industries 1956-1958, of Education and Commerce 1958-1971. Professor, of Economics since 1972. Chairman 1965-1968, Chairman 1968-1974.

Chairman Social-Democratic Pari. Group, 1974-1978; President, of Pari. 1974; Governor for Iceland, International Monetary Fund, 1956-1965. Governor for Iceland Institute Bank for Reconstruction and Development 1965-1971. Chairman, State Research Council, 1965-1971. Chairman, Cultural Committee, 1971-1978. Doctor Oecon. Honorary degree. Married Gudrun Vilmundardottir in 1939.

The Icelandic Parliament, where Gislason was a member from 1956 to 1971, is called Althing and is the oldest parliament in the world, established 930 AD. It has 63 members and is elected for four years.

Iceland Diplomatic Passport - Wife Of Former Minister

The oldest Icelandic passport I have seen was from 1939.


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1. What are the earliest known examples of passports, and how have they evolved?

The word "passport" came up only in the mid 15th Century. Before that, such documents were safe conducts, recommendations or protection letters. On a practical aspect, the earliest passport I have seen was from the mid 16th Century. Read more...

2. Are there any notable historical figures or personalities whose passports are highly sought after by collectors?

Every collector is doing well to define his collection focus, and yes, there are collectors looking for Celebrity passports and travel documents of historical figures like Winston Churchill, Brothers Grimm, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Read more...

3. How did passport designs and security features change throughout different periods in history, and what impact did these changes have on forgery prevention?

"Passports" before the 18th Century had a pure functional character. Security features were, in the best case, a watermark and a wax seal. Forgery, back then, was not an issue like it is nowadays. Only from the 1980s on, security features became a thing. A state-of-the-art passport nowadays has dozens of security features - visible and invisible. Some are known only by the security document printer itself. Read more...

4. What are some of the rarest and most valuable historical passports that have ever been sold or auctioned?

Lou Gehrig, Victor Tsoi, Marilyn Monroe, James Joyce, and Albert Einstein when it comes to the most expensive ones. Read more...

5. How do diplomatic passports differ from regular passports, and what makes them significant to collectors?

Such documents were often held by officials in high ranks, like ambassadors, consuls or special envoys. Furthermore, these travel documents are often frequently traveled. Hence, they hold a tapestry of stamps or visas. Partly from unusual places.

6. Can you provide insights into the stories behind specific historical passports that offer unique insights into past travel and migration trends?

A passport tells the story of its bearer and these stories can be everything - surprising, sad, vivid. Isabella Bird and her travels (1831-1904) or Mary Kingsley, a fearless Lady explorer.

7. What role did passports play during significant historical events, such as wartime travel restrictions or international treaties?

During war, a passport could have been a matter of life or death. Especially, when we are looking into WWII and the Holocaust. And yes, during that time, passports and similar documents were often forged to escape and save lives. Example...

8. How has the emergence of digital passports and biometric identification impacted the world of passport collecting?

Current modern passports having now often a sparkling, flashy design. This has mainly two reasons. 1. Improved security and 2. Displaying a countries' heritage, icons, and important figures or achievements. I can fully understand that those modern documents are wanted, especially by younger collectors.

9. Are there any specialized collections of passports, such as those from a specific country, era, or distinguished individuals?

Yes, the University of Western Sidney Library has e.g. a passport collection of the former prime minister Hon Edward Gough Whitlam and his wife Margaret. They are all diplomatic passports and I had the pleasure to apprise them. I hold e.g. a collection of almost all types of the German Empire passports (only 2 types are still missing). Also, my East German passport collection is quite extensive with pretty rare passport types.

10. Where can passport collectors find reliable resources and reputable sellers to expand their collection and learn more about passport history?

A good start is eBay, Delcampe, flea markets, garage or estate sales. The more significant travel documents you probably find at the classic auction houses. Sometimes I also offer documents from my archive/collection. See offers... As you are already here, you surely found a great source on the topic 😉

Other great sources are: Scottish Passports, The Nansen passport, The secret lives of diplomatic couriers

11. Is vintage passport collecting legal? What are the regulations and considerations collectors should know when acquiring historical passports?

First, it's important to stress that each country has its own laws when it comes to passports. Collecting old vintage passports for historical or educational reasons is safe and legal, or at least tolerated. More details on the legal aspects are here...

Does this article spark your curiosity about passport collecting and the history of passports? With this valuable information, you have a good basis to start your own passport collection.

Question? Contact me...