Magnus Magnusson was born - On this day in Scottish history


12 October 2020
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imports_CESC_0-z2m0uzkv-100000_62393.jpg Magnus Magnusson was born - On this day in Scottish history
Broadcaster and author Magnus Magnusson was born on 12 October 1929. ...

Broadcaster and author Magnus Magnusson was born on 12 October 1929 in Reykjavik, Iceland. Magnusson moved to Scotland with his family at a young age, when his father Sigursteinn Magnusson became the Icelandic consul in Edinburgh.

After attending the Edinburgh Academy, Magnusson moved on to Jesus College, Oxford, before accepting a position on The Scotsman newspaper which would prove to be the start of a long career in journalism and broadcasting. Although probably best known for his role as presenter of Mastermind, Magnusson was also a prolific author and translator - publishing a history of the Vikings and co-translating Njal's Saga, The Vinland Sagas and King Harald's Saga.

Magnusson died on 7 January 2007 in Balmore at the age of 77.

QUICK LINK: Explore Viking Scotland with this map.

Magnus Magnusson timeline

  • 12 October 1929 - Magnusson born in Reykjavik, Iceland
  • 1960 - Begins translation work for the Penguin Classics series
  • 1967 - Magnusson begins his broadcasting career with the BBC
  • 1972 - Begins presenting the TV quiz show Mastermind - a role he will hold for 25 years
  • 1989 - Awarded an honorary knighthood
  • 7 January 2007 - Magnusson dies at the age of 77