fantasy mural of gedsergaard

Free admittance to the Svinehave area from Strandvej 33, DK-4874 Gedser

Getzöre slot or Gedsergaard

The Gedsergaard manor at Fiskebaek that Edward Tesdorpf bought in 1847, should not be confused with Gedsergaard from Svinehave Voldsted at Gedser.
This Gedsergaard was owned by the Crown and had in the Middle Ages great importance for the country's defense and a prominent place in the Crown possessions on the island of Falster.

(Many names are connected to the manor:

  • Getzöre slot (Castle)
  • Gedsergaard
  • Gedser Kongsgård (King's manor)
  • Gedes Gaard
  • Getzöre gaard (manor)
  • Svinehave Voldsted (recent times)

The old villages Skelby and Gedesby with the suffix -by, are probably settled in Viking times around the years 850-1000. From written sources the two names are mentioned in a deed of gift in 1135 from Peter Bodilsen to Sct. Peter's monastery in Naestved, about donated land from Skelby and Gedesby. It is quite amusing, as most  names first known written sources are from King Valdemar cadaster 1231.
Gedser By in contrast, is just recently dated from around 1900 and the present city has no connection to the old castle, which was oriented toward the road north to Nykoebing.

The name "Gedser" is believed to come from the ironage danish word 'getír' with the meaning "goat herder" and '-ör' meaning "ear" (a small peninsula). Overall, this means the place name following "goat herders peninsula".

Along with Aalholm Castle at Nysted Gedsergaard was an important defense against external enemies as well as a stabilizing power of the area's nobility, peasants and citizens, when taxes was to be recovered.

The castle is supposedly built earlier than that referred to in the Land Book from 1200-century - from elsewhere on Lolland-Falster, we know that the Wends (ligeso, as the Danish Vikings did it themselves) went on poaching in the summer in both close and distant countries. At places they captured even ground and formed new small rural urban communities, it can be seen from some names of Wendish origin like Corselitze and Tillitze. And besides, we also know of several major defenses / refuges from Viking times on the Lolland-Falster islands.

But besides defense purposes the castle also served as residence for travelers waiting to cross the Baltic Sea in at that time more or less seaworthy and flat-bottom boats, and they often had to wait for a long time before the weather was good enough for crossing the Baltic.

The other option for accommodation, Nykøbing Castle, was not particularly suitable when you have to bear in mind that with the transport and road conditions of that time you would use most of a day to travel down to the Gedsergaard.

voldsted33 w480 svinehave information from falsters minder museum


On Gjedsergaard several smaller Denmark historical events took place, including in 1431, there were peace talks with Germany on site.

Especially in the 1500s was Gedsergaard the place where royal travelers and other distinguished people went when they were waiting for the weather to turn out well, so they could ferried over the Baltic Sea from the port at the bottom of Boto Lagune at Gedesby.

During severe winters in 1546 and 1554, conditions were yet so strict that it was possible to cross the Baltic Sea in a carriage!

Frederick II was married to Sophie of Mecklenburg. When her mother, Duchess Elisabeth in 1586 died in Gedser Castle on the way home to Mecklenburg after a visit to Tycho Brahe on Ven, would Duke Ulrich no more stay on Gedsergaard. He was therefore accommodated in Gedesby Inn (established 1571), where the building materials and furniture from the castle and the farm buildings were used to fit out royal apartments. The Royals stopped almost using Gedsergaard, and Gedesby Inn took over almost all overnight travellers.

Gedser Palace crumbled, probably during the 1600s. Back then there was a larger forest area around Gjedsergaard, but it was burnt down by Swedish soldiers during the Swedish Wars 1658-1660. In the middle of the 1700s the old buildings were torn down and a more recent was built in 1767. This was later rebuilt in 1872. Today, there is no structures left.

Until the 1770s Gedesby was the starting point for the important German connection to Warnemünde and Rostock. Bötö and Kobbelsö, now dried up, once had depth enough for the small ferry boats of the time to be able to sail right up to Gedesby at the back of the cemetery, where there was a ferry inn, known from 1570 and up to 1770s.

Svinehave Voldsted is now again available to the public. It is protected and owned by Guldborgsund municipality, however, we must remember that access to it is through private road and path, so please treat 'Sövangs' area with due caution (including doors, as there may be animals in the area).

Really nice map animation & info can be found on:
Historisk Atlas website:

kongsgaard histatlas


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