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The Bjergegaard Family of Bornholm


compiled by:

Norman Lee Madsen



The following is the result of my attempt to gather together and examine as much information on Sigvard Mahler Dam’s so called Bjergegaard-family of Bornholm. This family’s arms depict what have been variously described as: “nærmest ligner et kindben” (most closely resembling a jawbone) and “der nærmest ligner et kindben eller en sparre med spidsen vendt nedad” (which closest resembles a jawbone or a cheveron with its point turned down), “et halv hummerklo” (a half lobster claw), “en halvbue med nogle spidser” (a half-bow with several spikes), “et kindben” (a cheekbone), and finally by Sigvard as a “geddekæft” (pike's jawbone). In Sigvard’s view in the past members of this family have been incorrectly identified as members of the Myre-family. The possible identification of this family is compounded by the fact that the period in which they lived is one in which there is little documentation, much controversy, and even more opinions!



The writings on this family’s members by Dr. Marius Kristian Zahrtmann:


Bornholm historian Dr. M.K. Zahrtmann (1861-1940) wrote in his article about the Uf and Myre families of Bornholm that Jørgen Gagge’s wife Margrethe is the daughter of Chief Justice Peder Hansen Uf and Mette Hansdatter Myre. Stating that Jørgen Gagge took over the management of his father-in-law’s farm, Simlegård, after Peder Hansen Uf’s death; and that in 1601 he had a churchbell cast for St. Klemen’s Church, which was decorated with the coat of arms of the Uf and Myre families.



The writings on this family’s members by Edvard Skovgaard:


Edvard Skovgaard relates in his in his pedigree “1000 Aner til en Skovgårdsslægt” (published in 1989) that Mette Hansdatter, the wife of Chief Justice Peder Hansen Uf (1536-1596) of Simlegård in Klemensker, was a member of the Myre-family.



The Bjergegaard-family according to Sigvard Mahler Dam:


The informative articles written by Sigvard Mahler Dam have a lot to say about the Bjergegaard-family in his articles “Landsdommer Patriciatet på Bornholm”, part 2 (1988, SAXO) and “Over hals og hoved: et ramaskrig over Bornholms land” (1991, SAXO).


From the 1988 article “Landsdommer Patriciatet på Bornholm” – part 2:

There was need for a new chief justice in 1537 after two previous unfortunate experiences (which the Lübeckers had with Jens Hansen Myre and Mogens Uf), it can be expect that the Lübeckers got a legal judgment compelling the Danish king to make a particular appoint. In any case there is good reason to interpret that the chosen man was on good terms with Lübeck. Now begins politics as Laurids Pedersen’s family’s legacy! The Lübeckers supported Laurids family on Bornholm; while the king supported Laurid’s exiled opponents in the Herredagen (the court of appeal to the king). Chief Justice Laurids Pedersen had one brother, Hans Pedersen, whose wife's mother, Anne (for whom Hans acted as guardian), was involved in a dispute over Myregård in Åker parish with an exiled man by the name of Per Andersen.


Madam Anne’s second husband, Hans Borreby, had bequeathed her Myregård; although they had no children together it was legal according to Skåne Law so long as the gift not more than half share of the total estate. Madam Anne got the Lübeck bailiff to throw Per Andersen off the farm. Per Andersen was surely no paragon of virtue during their feud in 1535, as he was an exile (along with Mogens Uf) by 1537 – taking refuge in København, where he cited Madam Anne to the Herredagen (Per’s wife was Hans Borreby’s sister), and there he was awarded Myregård via Jyske (Jutlander) Law! And it was hardly by chance. . .


On the 13th of June 1543 Laurids Pedersen’s brother, Hans Pedersen, petitioned to be endowed with one of those 3 farms, and here again is reference to the uncertainty as to who had jurisdiction over the appeal. The chief justice complained to Lübeck in the winter of 1542-43 about having a deficit because of the 3 missing farms, and asked for new endowment. In reply, the councilmen in Lübeck wrote to the bailiff informing him that he could endow a farm to the justice, provided that Laurids Pedersen promised to listen to the bailiff's advice and willing do what is asked of him! Open bribery!


The last occasion we encounter Laurids Pedersen, with surety, is on the 10th of June 1545 when he, apparently under orders from Lübeck, placed his signature on the written confession of a woman after her “pinligt forhør” (torture, literally: painful test), as to how she had tried to poison the Lübeck bailiff, Blasius a Wickede, at the request of the bailiff's own wife. Another signator on that document was the next chief justice - also a friend to Lübeck - Hans Reimer, then the mayor of Rønne.


Laurids Pedersen probably did not have any children.  However, his brother Hans Pedersen had a daughter, Mette Hansdatter, who later married a future chief justice (Peder Hansen Uf), and also a great-grandchild, Karen Jørgensdatter, who likewise would marry a future chief justice (Mads Kofoed). Neither of his sons (Peder and Bendt Hansen) were able to later attain a high court seat, although one was involved in a joint judgment: on 13th of September 1583 Chief Justice Peder Hansen (Uf) with the assistance of 3 freemen, including Bendt Hansen, addressed a case against some borgere (burghers - licensed citizens) of Nexø concerning the matter of salvage from a shipwreck.


About the family before Laurids and Hans Pedersen nothing is known. It is interesting however that the family-arms are the same as the extinct family Split: i rødt feldt en hvid halv hummerklo, på hjelmen to hvide vesselhorn (on a red field a white half lobster claw, on the helmet two white vesselhorns). The arms are known for the above-mentioned Mette Hansdatter and her husband, Peder Hansen (Uf), on a still preserved pew seat hung in Klemensker Church. Also known is the report of a gravestone in Østermarie, for Peder Kofoed and his two wives, Elsebeth Gagge and Inger Peder Hansens Datter. Inger was the niece of Madam Mette, and the report describes "et våben nærmest som et kindben” (an arms adjacent with a cheekbone); note: if the lobster claw image is turned point up it looks similar to the lower jaw from a skull. An interesting example of combination family-arms on the island displays a Kofoed chevron "straddled across" one such lobster claw with point up.


Peder Hansen (Uf) and family lived at Simlegård in Klemensker parish, which still is one of the largest farms on Bornholm, and the family owned vast estates. The couple had 2 daughters: Margrethe, who married Jørgen Gagge of Almegård in Knudsker parish; and Merete, married to Hans Grabow of Pederstrup, who came to settle on Bornholm. The Uf-family estate was divided between these two families, of which the Gagges are the only ones to stay on Bornholm, while Merete’s stepson, Jochum Grabow, sold all his estate and moved away from the island.


In Julius Bidstrup’s “Stamtavle over Familien Koefoed” (pub. 1887, page 1, note 7): states that the gravestone of Peder Kofoed (1548-1616) lay close to the altar of Østermarie Church, and describes the shield of his second wife, “Inger Peder Hansens datter”, also on the gravestone, as “nærmest ligner et kindben” (most closely resembling a jawbone), this image had also have been carved upon a pew seat (in Klemensker Church). In the same author’s 1911 edition of “Stamtavler over Familien Hauber og Arboe”, on page 160 re: Inger Pedersdatter, he now describes her emblem: “der nærmest ligner et kindben eller en sparre med spidsen vendt nedad” (which closest resembles a jawbone or a cheveron with its point turned down)!!! In this manner a “hummerklo” (lobster-claw) has been finessed to become a reversed chevron and thus unveiling the ancestor chart wherein Chief Justice Peder Hansen (Uf) is made to be the father of Inger, but it should be the identically named Peder Hansen of Vellensgård! Amusingly enough Freeman Hans Kofoed Olufsen uses a seal in 1648 which is a combination of the Kofoed-family’s chevron and the Bjergegaard-family’s lobster-claw, with the “ryggen” (back) turned over “nærmest ligner et kindben” (looking very much like a jawbone): as seen in the authorization of the coronation document for Prince Frederik, nr. 105a, part 1 and twice used in nr. 105b, part 1 – Rigs Arkiv.


From the 1991 article “Over hals og hoved: et ramaskrig over Bornholms land”:

Now it is time to remember one of the witnesses to the High Court case of 1522: “Hans Borreby i Borgegaard”, and since there was no such name for a farm on Bornholm it is probably a variation in the spelling of Bjergegård. It turns out that Hans Borreby was married to a woman named Anne, and another interesting probate case gives us a peek into Anne’s family history: “1537, u.d.: stævning til Herredagen: Peder Andersß i Myregaardt (Aaker) Citat Hans Persß i Bierregaardt (Vestermarie) och hans hustrues moder fore nogre Jordegots som the om trette, att møde tiill første almyndelig here (dag) som stande schal her i riiget” (1537, not dated: Summoned to High Court: Peder Andersen of Myregård (Åker) versus Hans Pedersen of Bjergegård (Vestermarie) and his wife’s mother to appear because of their dispute over the ownership of an estate, to present their initial positions here in the kingdom’s open high court).


What can the outcome of the above court case tell us? That the Hans Pedersen who resided at Bjergegård in 1537 was the son-in-law and guardian of Anne, and since her second husband, Hans Borreby, also lived at that same farm in 1522, then the farm must have belonged to Anne or her deceased first husband. Furthermore, considering that among the witnesses for Anne Sevidsdatter (the widow of Anders Uf and Jep Splid) on July 10, 1508, when she donated money to Lund Cathedral, was an “Oluf Jensen i Biærgegaarden”, then we easily might assume that the previously mentioned Poul Olsen was the son of Oluf Jensen. As Poul died before 1522, he must have died a very young man. This seems ever more credible when we learn that Oluf Jensen’s mother’s name was Kirstine Poulsdatter! Oluf Jensen’s father was Jens Jensen of Bjergegård, mentioned in 1490. Hans Pedersen was probably married to the “Anne Poul Olsens datter”, who was mentioned as married to Oluf Due in 1523.


The family, which branches from Hans Pedersen and the daughter of Hans Borreby’s widow Anne, resided at Bjergegård, Vestermarie, and thus can be known as the younger Bjergegaard-family. As mentioned earlier we first met up with the family on July 2, 1537, when Hans Pedersen was his mother-in-law’s guardian for the court case regarding Myregård in Åker – a case that they lost. Later in that same month, on July 21st, we find a letter wherein the Lübeck bailiff, Bernt Knop, was given the news about the decision made on the case in København; the letter was conveyed to him by Chief Justice Lars Pedersen, who had been in København. On June 13, 1543 Bailiff Knop wrote to Lübeck that Chief Justice Lars Pedersen has complained that his position lacked sufficient rewards, and he therefore requested access to a farm. The town council in Lübeck agreed to his request – if he agreed to carry out all the bailiff’s requests! Furthermore, we find that the judge’s brother, Hans Pedersen, asked for one of 3 farms which had belonged to the bishopric in Lund, but which the king had since taken back. A document dated June 10, 1545 mentions Lars Pedersen as chief justice over a court case, but by October 19, 1551 he is likely dead, as that is when Hans Rømer in Rønne was newly called to the office of chief justice for Bornholm, with Peder Gagge and Hans Berildsen as co-justices.


The next generation of the family made itself known during the second half of the 1500s, when it became harder and harder for Bornholm’s elite to defend their noble status. On November 26, 1565 King Frederik II issued a letter stating that he was aware“at en del paa Bornholm udgive dem for Herremænd, og tilholde sig adelig frihed, uden at kunne bevise at have nogen ret dertill” (that quite a few on Bornholm pass themselves off as Gentlemen, and take upon themselves noble privileges, without having the right to do so). The king ordered his representative to take care of the matter. The very same day Commandant Sweder Ketting in Hammerhus took Bendt Hansen of Ibsker parish to task for unlawful beachcombing as well as for pretending to be have noble privileges. He had to go before the High Court, of course the commandant planned to prove that Bendt Hansen was just a peasant, which meant more taxes for the commandant, but Bendt managed win his case. Bendt did very well for himself indeed, for on September 13, 1583 he was counted among the most distinguished on the island, as he was called to be a co-justice together with the presiding chief justices: Peder Hansen (Uf) of Simlegård in Klemensker, Jens Kofoed of Kyndegård in Nyker, Christen Clausen (Køller) of Hallegård in Olsker, all three of them being acknowledged minor nobles. He was named as “Bent Hansen til Ellingsgaard”, this must be an erroneous spelling of Vellingsgård in Nyker, the farm his family owned.


On September 6, 1572 some of the king’s councillors travelled to Bornholm and summoned the island’s freemen to a meeting in at the church in Åkirkeby (where the island’s parliament meet) to prove their right to noble status. Seventeen men showed up, and among the first named were “Peder Hansen og Bendt Hansen, brødre” (Peder Hansen and Bendt Hansen, brothers), the former could easily be mistaken for Chief Justice Peder Hansen (Uf) of Simlegård – however, he was also present and for that matter was the brother-in-law of Peder and Bendt Hansen. Also named were Jørgen Pedersen and Laurids Pedersen, which indicates that they are the sons of Peder Hansen. Laurids (or Lars) must have been named after the chief justice of the same name, while the name Jørgen harkens back to Jørgen Hals in Østermarie. The brothers Peder and Bendt Hansen owned the freeman’s farm Eskegård. A witness before the High Court on March 1, 1633 testified that the owners of Eskegård in Pedersker parish were: first Bendt Hansen, then Laurs Pedersen, after them the wellborn Mads Kofoed, who was the current chief justice, and after him his son Jørgen Kofoed took over the farm, none of them had payed any taxes to the crown.


When you look at the Bjergegaard-family tree it is easy to follow the succession, in June of 1631 the clerk for Hammershus fortress testified that Eskegård and its 2 copyhold farms were exempt from all royal taxes, and had been so in the time of Jørgen Kofoed’s father, Mads Kofoed, thus also in earlier times when his predecessors in the family had themselves own and used the farm. On February 20, 1588 the probate hearing for Freeman Jørgen Pedersen was held. He had 3 daughters: 1) Karen, later married to Chief Justice Mads Kofoed, who brought into their marriage both Vellingsgård in Nyker and Eskegård in Pedersker; 2) Elline, who brought 3 farms into her marriage with Esbern Kofoed: Frigård (4 vg. Poulsker), Tuegård i Egeby (6 vg. in Åker), and Mæby (1 vg. Nyker); and 3) Kirsten, who inherited Båstadgård (1 vg. Rø) and Saltholm (5 vg. Nyker).


A gravestone can still be found in Olsker Church for Truid Myre (-1551-1558-), who died at Myregård in Olsker on November 1, 1574. The carving of the shield is very worn and difficult to make out, but you can still make out 2 of the 3 ants on Truid’s coat of arms and 2 vesselhorns. His wife’s coat of arms depicts “enhalvbue med nogle spidser” (a crescent with several points) – a description also applicable to the “hummerklo” – also with vesselhorn on the helmet, and according to the chronology she may have been a daughter of Hans Pedersen of Bjergegård.


In Klemensker Church there is on display a special seat, which previously had belonged to the owners of Simlegård and had embellished their pew in the church. The seat has 2 carved and painted coat of arms with the initials “PH” and “MHD”, which pertains to Chief Justice Peder Hansen (Uf) and his wife Mette HansDatter. The Uf-family’s shield shows (an inverse, red chevron on a white field and 2 red vesselhorns on its helmet), and his wife’s shield shows the Bjergegaard-family’s geddekæft (pike’s jawbone) or halve hummerklo (half lobster claw) coat of arms (a white claw on a red field, and 2 white vesselhorns on the helmet). Peder Hansen’s seal displays an inverse chevron – probably to differentiate from the arms of his older brother, Oluf Hansen. Unfortunately my faith in the older researchers brought me to the wrong conclusion about Peder Hansen’s parents’ coat of arms in my article “De bornholmske væbnerslægter Uf og Splid”, as Mette Hansdatter is traditionally listed under the Myre-family.


Mette Hansdatter is mentioned in a high court judgement, dated June 15, 1582 (Herredags Dombog nr. 11, DaRA), as being the heir of Hans Myre, in a fight over Fuglsangsgård in Ibsker. However, this does not necessarily mean she is his daughter, as Hans Myre was first mentioned in 1511 and was dead by 1531, and she could hardly have been of age at that time. Hans Myre could possibly be a relative of Peder Myre, who was mentioned in 1489, and therefore we might assume that Lars and Hans Pedersen’s mother was the daughter of Hans Myre, which harmonizes with the fact that Bendt Hansen in 1565 was residing in Ibsker (at Fuglsangsgård?), which his brother-in-law Peder Hansen (Uf) later bought from him.


Lastly, we are faced with a bit of heraldric mystery! The seal of freeman Hans Kofoed Olufsen, who in 1638 inherited the nobleman’s farm Blykobbegård (in Nyker) and Frigård (15 vg.) in Vestermarie from his father, depicts the chevron emblem of the Kofoed-family above a pike’s jawbone. Why? We are led to believe that one of his female ancestors came from the Bjergegaard-family, but the problem is that we have no record of either his mother or his father’s mother! His father, Oluf Kofoed, also resided at Blykobbegård from 1624-1642, like his father Hans Kofoed (died 1623) before him.


Hans Kofoed Olufsen (with the chevron above the pike’s jawbone), shows up in the Parliament records for the year 1666 concerning the inheritance after Christine Køller, the widow of Sigvard Gagge of Åker, wherein he protests that he is just as close an heir after her as her guardian Claus Kames. We do not believe that Hans Kofoed could have married a woman from the Bjergegaard-family, as that would have meant that his son, Chief Justice Mads Kofoed (died 1646), would have committed incest in marrying Karen, one of Jørgen Pedersen’s three daughters. Then was it Oluf Kofoed who married a daughter from the Bjergegaard-family? If that is so – to whom was he married? The last two males of the above family were the brothers Jørgen and Lars Pedersen, the latter of whom resided at Eskesgård, but it was Jørgen’s son-in-law who inherited that farm, namely Chief Justice Mads Kofod, which indicates that Lars died childless. We know the names of Jørgen Pedersen’s sons-in-law, so apparently Oluf Kofoed did not marry any of them . . . or did he? In 1608 and 1618 his daughter Elline was married to Esbern Kofoed of Poulsker. A man not otherwise included on the family tree. Esbern, through his wife Elline, inherited three freehold farms from the Bjergegaard-family’s large landholdings: one of them in Åker, one in Nyker, and one in Poulsker. So one would expect to find more records mentioning him – perhaps he passed away early in their marriage, and the Oluf Kofoed may have married his widow? Something suggests this could be the case, for in the land protocols from 1622-1625 can be found the following for two copyhold farms in Poulsker and 1 in Åker: “Oluf Kofoeds bonde” (Oluf Kofoed’s peasant)! Were these Esbern Kofoed’s peasants that Oluf Kofoed had taken over? This would certainly explain the combination of symbols on Hans Kofoed Olufsen’s seal! And with the end of that particular emblem, when Hans Kofoed Olufsen died in 1694, the Bjergegaard-family’s geddekæft (pike’s jawbone) was sent into oblivion, a emblem which had been highly regarded on Bornholm for nearly 200 years.


But now you ask, why was the Bjergegaard-family’s arms identical to that of the revered old commandant and chief justice family Splid – yes, I am at a loss to answer how. But it is interesting to note that on March 29, 1416 a “Splyt væbner på Bornholm” (arms carrier Splid of Bornholm) is recorded as selling some land in Åby, Nyker parish – which is close by to Kyndegård and Vellingsgård, where the Bjergegaard-family was residing some 150 years later!



The Bjergegaard-family according to Norman Lee Madsen:


In “Dansk adelsvåbner, en heraldisk nøgle”, by Sven Tito Achen (Politikens Forlag, page 147, 1973, København), can be found the following under the heading of Myre "på Bornholm" (of Bornholm): Tre sorte myrer i hvidt. På hjelmen to hvide vesselhorn. * Uradel, Skåne eller Bornholm. Peder Myre 1429; Hans Myre 1518. (Three black ants on white. On the helmet two white vesselhorns. * Noble origins: Skåne or Bornholm. Peder Myre in 1429; Hans Myre in 1518.) Dr. Zahrtmann’s Truid Myre (died 1489) and his son Peder Myre provides us with a possible link between the two arms carriers of 1429 and 1518. The mention of Hans Myre can be found in “Danske adelige sigiller fra det 13. til 17. århundrede”, XV. Tre Myrer (Three Ants), page 36: Nr. 1. Myre, Han v.: s. hans myre. 1513 Juli 14, Top. Sml. Perg. Vemmenhøg H. (Nr. 1. Hans v. Myre: the seal reads Mr. Hans Myre; dated: July 14, 1518; Top. Collection Perg. Vemmenhøg district.) In his 1982 article Sigvard Mahler Dam states that Hans Myre died in 1518; while in his 1991 article he states that Hans Myre was mentioned in 1518, and dead before 1531.


The identity of Freeman Hans Myre (-1518-) of Fuglsangsgård, 6 Vdg. Ibsker, his children and grandchildren have been the source of much speculation and confusion over the years. This was brought about because of the fact that there was another Freeman named Hans Pedersen on Bornholm in the mid-1500s. This other Hans Pedersen (-1522-1536-1543-) has been identified by Sigvard Mahler Dam as a member of what he has named the “Bjergegaard-family”, and his identity is based largely on a reinterpretation of the so called hummerklo arms. According to Sigvard the hummerklo is actually a geddekæft (pike's jawbone) image. Confounding this matter is the fact that both Hans Pedersens had sons named Peder, namely: Peder Hansen Myre (-1547-, died 1572) of Fuglsangsgård and Peder Hansen (-1572-) of Vellensgård in Nyker.


Two of Hans Myre’s sons have been identified with high certainty, and a third can be added with some confidance. The most certain is the heir to the family-farm of Fuglsangsgård (and thus likely the youngest son), Peder Hansen Myre. The other is Truid Myre is named in a 1551 lawsuit in Malmö, and in 1555 in another lawsuit on Bornholm. He complained in 1558 to the king about Vassal (Lensmand) Lage Urne, who was not pleased at Truid having freeman status. Sought in 1552 to lay entire Arnager fishing village beneath his durisdiction, this attempt failed. On March 30, 1558 he was the spokesman for Bornholm's freemen to King Christian the 3rd regarding exemptions in payment of the land-assistance-tax (landehjælpeskat), the exemptions were denied. Truid probably died without any living children, as his farms (Store Myregård, 5 Vdg. Olsker; Lille Myregård, 6 Vdg. Olsker; Lille Myregård, 11 Slg. Nylars; Store Myregård, 10 Slg. Nylars; Ågård, 2 Vdg. Nylars; Pæregård, 3 Vdg. Nylars) would later become part of Simlegård estate, which was owned by Peder Hansen Uf and his wife Mette Hansdatter. Truid Myre died “Allerhelgens aften” (November 1) 1574, and according to Sigvard Mahler Dam, his gravestone was placed in “Ols kirkes våbenhus” (Olsker Church's entrance), and although worn the 3 ants of the Myre arms, with two vesselhorns on the helmet, can still be seen; also that the gravestone shows his wife's shield, which depicts “enhalvbue med nogle spidser” (a crescent with several points), with vesselhorns on the helmet - otherwise known as the hummerklo (lobsterclaw) or geddekæft (pike's jawbone) arms of the Bjergegaard-family.


The third son is Jens Hansen Myre, mentioned in a document dated 1541 which confures upon him the position of kannik (canon) in Lund. On July 4, 1574 he sold Myregård (a.k.a. Lille Ølegård), 9 Vdg. Østermarie, and one farm in Klinteby (20 Vdg. Ibsker), to Peder Oxe. He had a crookback (krogrygget) and died in Lund in 1575. This man is probably the same person as the Jens Hansen who was chief justice for Bornholm circa 1533, who placed his seal on an undated document (in 1533?) which was later presented in court in 1537 by Hans Borreby's widow Anne with regards to her dispute over the ownership of Myregård in Åker parish. In 1535 there was an unsuccessful uprising by the Bornholmers against their Lübeck overlords, and the island's chief justice, a Jens Hansen of Nylars parish is said to have been involved. He probably owned “Myregaard” (later called Ågård), 2 Vdg. Nylars, a frivornedegård (free copyhold farm) - which is known to have been owned by Truid Myre. Some accounts state the he was executed by the Lübeckers - but the facts on this seem doubtful. It seems probable that Jens Hansen (Myre) fled the island in 1535, taking up the possition of canon in Lund in 1541. Possibly he is the father of Mads Kofoed's first wife Johanne (died circa 1547)?


The identification of two possible daughters of Hans Myre by Sigvard Mahler Dam is pure speculation based on circumstantial evidence. Various other researcher have incorrectly stated that “Mette Hans Pedersens Datter” was the daughter of Hans Pedersen Myre - based only on the fact that Mette and her husband Peder Hansen (Uf) owned Fuglsangsgård in 1574. A court document dated June 15, 1582 concerning a dispute over Fuglsangsgård states that Mette Hansdatter was an heir of Hans Myre (-1518-). The Sigvard’s assertion that Mette is the daughter of Hans Pedersen of the so called “Bjergegaard-family” is, in my mind, all but proven by the evidence that the arms painted on the church pew door in Klemensker were a sparre (the Uf-family’s image) and a geddekæft/hummerklo (the Bjergegaard-family’s image). His case is further bolstered by the fact that Hans Pedersen’s brother is known to have resided in Ibsker in 1565, although I know of no evidence to support the assertion that Bendt Hansen sold Fuglsangsgård to Peder Hansen (Uf). This forces Mette’s connection to the Myre-family back at least one generation, from father to grandparent.


Sigvard’s identification of a second daughter is based soley on the speculation that the position of chief justice on Bornholm was kept as an inherited family position by a small clique of Freemen families during the 1500s; and so he speculates that Chief Justice Oluf Ottesen’s wife might be the daughter of Hans Myre, and that they named their son Hans after her father. This would also explain how their grandson Peder Hansen (Uf), and his wife Mette Hansdatter, managed to inherit the majority of the Myre-family’s farms. These same farms were later inherited by their daughter Margrethe/Merete Pedersdatter (c.1555-1624).


The first generation:

[1] Jens Jensen (-1490-1491-) of Bjergegård, 9 Vdg. Vestermarie – a Freeman


The second generation:

[2] Oluf Jensen (-1496-1508-) of Bjergegård, 9 Vdg. Vestermarie – a Freeman {son of [1] Jens Jensen}


The third generation:

[3] Poul Olsen (-1511?-, dead before 1522), of Bjergegård, 9 Vdg. Vestermarie – a Freeman {son of [2] Oluf Jensen}


The fourth generation:

[4] Axel Poulsen (-1523-1550-) of Østermarie parish – a Freeman {son of [3] Poul Olsen}

[5] n.n. Poulsdatter (-1523-1537-), wife of 1. Oluf Due (-1523-), 2. Hans Pedersen (-1537-1543-) – foremother of the youngerr (female line) Bjergegaard-family {daughter of [3] Poul Olsen}


The fifth generation:

[6] n.n. Axelsdatter (-?-), possibly the wife of Christian Bagge (-1563-) of Rønne {undocumented possible daughter of [4] Axel Poulsen}

[7] Poul Axelsen (-?-) possibly of Østermarie {undocumented possible son of [4] Axel Poulsen}

[8] Peder Hansen (-1572-, died c.1581) of Vellensgård in Nyker, and Eskesgård in Pedersker – a Freeman in 1572 {probably the son of [5] n.n. Poulsdatter}

[9] Mette Hansdatter (-1555?-1574-), wife of Peder Hansen {Uf} (c.1536-1596), who was chief justice 1574-88 {probably the daughter of [5] n.n. Poulsdatter}

[10] Bendt Hansen (-1565-1572-, died before 1588) of Eskesgård in Pedersker – a Freeman in 1572 {probably the son of [5] n.n. Poulsdatter}


The sixth generation:

[11] Absalon Bagge (-c.1626?-), probably of Bornholm {undocumented possible son of [6] n.n. Axelsdatter}

[12] Axel Poulsen (-1625-1658-1662-) of Palmegård, 62 Slg. Vestermarie, and Vester Ellebygård, 63 Slg. Østermarie {possibly the son of [7] Poul Axelsen}

[13] Jørgen Pedersen (-1572-, died 1588) of Vellensgård in Nyker, and Eskesgård in Pedersker – a Freeman in 1572 {son of [8] Peder Hansen}

[14] Lars Pedersen (-1572-, died before 1588) of Eskesgård in Pedersker – a Freeman in 1572 {son of [8] Peder Hansen}

[15] Inger Pedersdatter (-c.1585-c.1600-), wife of Peder Kofoed (1548-1616) of Kofoedgård, 23 Slg. Østermarie – geddekæft/hummerklo image on her gravestone {daughter of [8] Peder Hansen}

[16] Margrethe Pedersdatter (c.1555-1624), wife of 1. Freeman Jørgen Gagge of Store Almegård in Knudsker, 2. Freeman Hans Grabow of Pederstrup on Lolland {daughter of [9] Mette Hansdatter}


The sixth generation:

[17] Mette Absalonsdatter Bagge (c.1626-1690), wife of Hans Kofoed Pedersen (-1658-1673-1678-) of Rønne {daughter of [11] undocumented Absalon Bagge}

[18] Poul Axelsen (-1658-1662-1686-) of Albuegård, 53 Slg. Østermarie, and Toftegård, 80 Slg. Østermarie {possibly the son of [12] Axel Poulsen}

[19] Kirsten Jørgensdatter (-1588-1616-), wife of Esper Hansen (-1618-) of Bådstedgård, 1 Vdg. Rø {daughter of [13] Jørgen Pedersen}

[20] Elline Jørgensdatter (-1588-1608-1618-), wife of 1. Esbern Kofoed (-1608-) of Frigård, 12 Vdg. Poulsker, and possibly 2. Oluf Kofoed (died 1641) {daughter of [13] Jørgen Pedersen}

[21] Karen Jørgensdatter (-1588-, died 1650), wife of Chief Justice Mads Kofoed (-1608-1629-, died 1646) of Vellensgård in Nyker {daughter of [13] Jørgen Pedersen}

[22] Poul Kofoed (-1620-) of Stralsund in Pommerania {son of [15] Inger Pedersdatter}

[23] Oluf Kofoed (1588-1636) of Ystad in Skåne {son of [15] Inger Pedersdatter}

[24] Peder Kofoed (c.1589-1637) of Malmö in Skåne {son of [15] Inger Pedersdatter}

[25] Jørgen Kofoed (c.1592-c.1641) of Slagelse on Sjælland {son of [15] Inger Pedersdatter}

[26] Boel Pedersdatter Kofoed (-c.1625-1662-), wife of 1. Claus Hartwig, 2. Christen Laursen, both of Rønne {daughter of [15] Inger Pedersdatter}

[27] Elsebye Pedersdatter Kofoed (died c.1630), wife of Niels Berildsen of Gadebygård in Østermarie {daughter of [15] Inger Pedersdatter}

[28] Anne Pedersdatter Kofoed (-1625-), wife of Jens Pedersen Spager of Lille Spagergård, 40 Slg. Østerlars {daughter of [15] Inger Pedersdatter}

[29] Mads Kofoed (c.1600-1646) of Kofoedgård, 23 Slg. Østermarie – a Freeman {son of [15] Inger Pedersdatter}

[30] Claus Gagge (c.1575-1654) of Gaggegård, 6 Vdg. Ibsker – a Freeman {son of [16] Margrethe Pedersdatter}

[31] Peder Gagge (-1647-) of Lensgård in Østerlars – a Freeman {son of [16] Margrethe Pedersdatter}

[32] Hans Gagge (-?-) – a Freeman {son of [16] Margrethe Pedersdatter}

[33] Sivert Gagge (c.1598-1661) of Store Myregård in Åker – a Freeman {son of [16] Margrethe Pedersdatter}

Contact me at: Norman Lee Madsen, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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