Ove Gjedde

Ove Gjedde

Ove Gjedde[1] (27 December 1594 in Tommerup – 19 December 1660) was a Danish admiral and member of the interim government that followed the death of Christian IV and imposed harsh restrictions on Frederick III due to his close ties to Germany.

Early Years

Gjedde was born in Skåne, Tommerup near Kristianstad in 1594.[2]

Career with Danish East India Company

In March 1618, Gjedde commanded an expedition to India and Ceylon to establish a Danish colony that could be used as a base for the China and East Indies trade of the Danish East India Company. His fleet consisted of the Danish naval ships Elefanten and David, the yacht Øresund, and the merchant ships Kiøbenhavn and Christian.[3] He established the fort Danborg at Tranquebar, which would remain a Danish colony for 200 years. Gjedde returned in March 1622.

He participated in the Torstenson War (1643–1645) as an admiral and in 1645 he was made "admiral of the realm", but in 1648 he became sick, and was instead granted the fiefdom of Helsingborg Castle.

Later Years

After the peace in Roskilde, Denmark lost Scania to Sweden. When the Swedish king Karl X Gustav broke the peace of 1658, Ove Gjedde was taken prisoner, during a visit to Helsingborg. He was first sent to prison in Helsingborg castle, and later sent to Malmö. In 1660 he was released during prisoner exchanges between Sweden and Denmark. At the time Gjedde was an old and physically weak man and he had already build a grave mounument in the old Danish city of Helsingborg, which had now become Swedish. The legend says that, "His bones after the Roskilde peace never found rest, after Scania became Swedish" (Danish: hans ben efter Roskildefreden aldrig fandt hvile, efter Skåne var blevet svensk)


Gjedde married Dorothy Knudsdatter in 1622 and had three children:[4]

  • Dorte Gjedde 1625-? - daughter
  • Brorstrup Gjedde - son
  • Frederick Eiler Gjedde 1641-1717 - son


Gjedder died in Copenhagen in 1660.[5]

See also


External links

  • Trankebar Net: Ove Gjedde