The Norwegian Manor 1500-2000 (completed)

The project provides new research and new approaches to the history of Norwegian manors from the Middle Ages and up to our own time.

Baroniet Rosendal - the Manor from 1665

About the project

Many will argue that manors and nobility have not had any particular significance in Norwegian history. Manors and nobility were of Danish origin, elitist and of little relevance for Norwegian historical identity. This project sees it differently.

Manors and nobility was an important civilizing factor in a key phase in Norwegian history. Manors represented a modern way of organizing society. They represented a social order and formed the Norwegian landscape for hundreds of years. Their owners and users formed the Norwegian community significantly.

A number of Norwegian communities can trace their history and their economic activities back to a society created by a mansion. Nobility and mansions are closely linked. But even though the mansions were expressions of a common European culture, they also contributed to the unique and intricate history of Norwegian local communities. The manors and their organization were "mirrors" of a culture changeably formed by local nobility, urban elites and farmers.

Although the heyday of the mansion culture coincided with Danish rule in Norway, the mansion culture did not end 1814. From the 1700s the Norwegian urban elite took control over the mansion, and in our own time manor houses anachronically have been conceived as the expressions of "the good life."


The project will result in a book that

  • Sets the manor houses in Norwegian history
  • Viewing manor houses as important for the design of the food, landscape and social forms
  • Find out how the mansion culture still living in Norway, although it happens in the new formations
Published May 3, 2010 9:03 AM - Last modified Feb. 2, 2017 9:45 AM


Arne Bugge Amundsen
+47-22857629, +47-92244774