The enclosure movement at Fodby

The enclosure movement at Fodby

Until the 1800s, the norm of Danish life was the arrangement of farms together in villages. Fields surrounded the village and were divided by small hedges or dykes. From above, this resembled a jigsaw puzzle.

The large agrarian reforms at the end of the 1700s meant that farmers received the land which they cultivated at the time.

By dividing the fields into narrow plots, it was ensured that both good and poor soil was equally spread amongst the farms. from above, the fields now resembled a star.

At the same time, land was allocated to farms which were moved from the villages to the open fields. This was the so-called 'land reallocation and enclosure'.

To begin with, many people were unsure of leaving their familiar communities but gradually more people could see the advantages of being owners and of having more land. The land reallocation and enclosure reform at Fodby occurred immediately following the agrarian reforms abolishing adscription in 1788. 

Source: Parcellation in Fodby,
documents from Fodbygård estate 1790, Næstved Archives

Kindly provided by Næstved Archives