Bondegård | means farm in Norwegian | Norway

Bondegård is a Norwegian noun that means farm. In informal speech and in many dialects, people only use the single word gård or gard.
LA Dahlmann | talk NORWAY
Old bondegård - farm - in Rosendal, Kvinnherad, Hordaland, Norway. | Photo: Normanns kunstforlag cc pdm.
Old bondegård - farm - in Rosendal, Kvinnherad, Hordaland, Norway. | Photo: Normanns kunstforlag cc pdm.

Pronunciation

Bondegård – gård – gard

The grammar

A compound word made up of: bonde + gård | noun | masculine | the indefinite form: en bondegård (a bondegård) | the definite form: bondegården (the bondegård) | the d at the end is silent – and in some dialects, the rd is pronounced as a thick l.

What does the word mean?

Bonde: means farmer, comes from the Old Norse language with the meaning: a person with a fixed abode – a person living in one place.
Gård or gard: means in this context fenced-in land used for cultivation or animal husbandry. The word also has other meanings, see below.
Bondegård: a farm.

The word gård – or gard – is also used in other contexts, but then usually with a prefix or a suffix, for example in kirkegård=churchyard, bakgård=backyard, bygård=apartment block/building, hønsegård=enclosed chicken enclosure, skjærgård=archipelago etc.

Similar or related words

Bruk: the word bruk is sometimes used when referring to a farm, but do also have other meanings. We see it used in the word småbruk, which means smallholding or small farm.

More on the historical context

Stone age farmers

The first humans that came to the Norwegian landscape after the latest ice-age, some 10-15,000 years ago, were hunters, fishers, and gatherers. Around 2400 BC, a section of the population took up farming, and created more permanent settlements; they established bondegårder=farms.

A farm’s name

In writing – or when referring to a particular farm – the word gård is also often added after the farm’s name, for example as in Østre Øre Gård.

Urban family house

Bergliot Dahlmann (1918-2003), who grew up in the small town of Moss in south-eastern Norway, used the word gård when referring to a regular urban family house.

Sources: Nasjonalbiblioteket nb.no | Einar Haugen’s Norwegian-English dictionary | Det Norske Akademis ordbok | Bokmålsordboka and Nynorskordboka.

Our most recent posts

My Norwegian heritage

One of the oldest Norwegian instruments is the birch trumpet. But is it really an instrument at all - or did it originally have a completely different purpose?
Our foremothers were hardworking and inventive. Here you can read more about how the laundry was done on a Norwegian mountain farm in the late 1800s.
In Norway, the pizza appeared as an exotic newcomer in the 1970s. But bread topped with foodstuffs is nothing new in Norwegian food history.
Once you start taking an interest in the old Norwegian farming and family history, then the people of the past start coming to the fore.
When humankind first appeared in the Norwegian landscape – sometime after the last ice age – the search for food was their primary motivation.
Budrått is a Norwegian noun that means the output of milk products on a farm - such as cheese and butter. The word is often associated with what was produced during the summer on the seasonal mountain or forest pasture farm - the seter.
Some of the beautiful Norwegian wooden stave churches are almost 1000 years old. Today, there are 28 of them left.
This beautiful oil painting by Johan Christian Dahl says a lot about generations of Norwegians - and the landscape and the skills they knew.
In the olden days, people dressed up warmly and got out onto the fjord or lake to catch their Sunday dinner. Enjoy!
Lystring is a Norwegian verb that means catching fish or other water creatures in the dark, using a fire torch to attract the fish and a multi-pronged spear.
In this video-collection of historical photos, we reminisce about the dairy cow on the old Norwegian farm. We recommend that you watch with the sound on. Enjoy!
After the Black Death, it took the Norwegian communities centuries to recover. And soon, the country also lost its independence.
In the old Norwegian farming society, a husmann was a man who was allowed to build his home on a small section of a farm’s land, and pay with his labour instead of rent.
Mead and beer are both alcoholic drinks known from Norwegian history. The Norwegians call them «mjød» and «øl». But do you know the difference between the two?
It is said that all people are equal in Heaven. But the historical churchyard shows us that no such equality applied here on Earth.
The first half of the 1900s came with a momentous change to Norwegian society. The old ways of the ancient hunting and farming culture were rapidly dying.
Skodje sogelag and Louis Giske wrote the history of the two Sortehaug farms and its inhabitants back in 1986.
Ljå is a Norwegian noun that means a scythe - an old agricultural cutting-tool used when mowing the grass to make hay, or when harvesting the grain crops.
Langfjordbotn - in Norway’s northernmost region Finnmark - was the birthplace of Oluf Røde, born in 1889.
Skigard is a Norwegian noun that means wooden fence. It is made of split tree trunks, using simple tools. Fence making and mending was a task for early summer.
After a troubled ten-year courtship, the current King Harald V of Norway finally got to marry his Miss Sonja Haraldsen on the 29th of August 1968.

Follow us on social media

Norwegian history