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Gjest Erling Erickson

[#2107] the meaning of "den" at the end of a family name

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Gjest Erling Erickson

My great-great grandfather (Lars Syverson) was born on a farm named Brenn in South Aurdahl. When he took a family name in the late 1800s he adopted the name of Brenden and thus was known as Lars Syverson Brenden. His last name would appear to be Brenn + den. What does the "den" mean? Thank you.Thank you.

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Gjest tom askeroi

I'm no expert at this particular name, but normally it's the "en" that is the ending, meaning "the" ((the guy from) that particular "brenn" apposed to any "brenn"). The D I guess is only a rest of the old "danish" way of writing brenn - brend/brænd.

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Gjest Erling Erickson

Tom Askeroi: Thanks for the explanation. It makes a great deal of sense and I am certain it is the correct answer. Cordially, Erling Erickson

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Gjest Jan Oldervoll

I think you both are at the wrong path.In 1865 we find two lars Syvertsen in South Aurdal. One of them was Gaardbruger, Selveier og Skolelærer, or Farmer and school teacher, 32 years old, living (and owning) a farm called Dølvensbrænden. In this area there are approximately 200 farms call Brænden or Brenden, 25% with a extra name in front like Dølven. This farm could ether ve called Døvlesbrende or Brenden, and I am not surprised he took the shorter form as his name.Dølven was a larger farm close to Dølvesbrenden. The land of the last had probably belonged to Dølven earlier and Dølvesbrenden means the Brenden in the area of Dølven. As for the meaning of Brenden I can only guess, since this is not my area. To brenne, or brende 100 years ago, means to burn.Brenden could mean an area in the woods that at a time was cleared by buring to make agricultural land. But maybe someone would like to correct me?

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Gjest Tom Askerøi

Thank you for your lecture. You're certainly right. But that doesn't change the fact that the ending is "en" - not "den" - meaning THE. It only moves the THE from the person to the farm, doesn't it?

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Gjest Jan Oldervoll

You are absolutely right, Tom.

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Gjest Erling Erickson

Jan Oldervoll: Thank you for your help. The Lars Syverson who lived at Dolvenbreden farm was certainly my great great grandfather (he was born in 1834 and was a farmer and teacher). Now, it is easy to see why he chose Brender for his family name. For those of us in the United States, tracing Norwegian ancestors can be difficult and your expert help is much appreciated. Cordially, Erling Erickson

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