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Born Feb. 27, 1881, in Copenhagen; died Jan. 24, 1952, in Reykjavík. Icelandic statesman. A lawyer by education.
From 1914 to 1916 and 1919 to 1920, Björnsson was a deputy to the Althing. In these same years he occupied managerial positions in various Icelandic companies and banking establishments. From 1920 to 1924 and 1926 to 1940 he was Icelandic ambassador to Denmark. From 1941 to 1944 he was regent of Iceland, and on June 17, 1944, when Iceland was proclaimed a republic, he became its first president. In 1949 he was reelected for a second term.