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Lordships

of Sinoutskerke and Baarsdorp

The title of the lordships of Sinoutskerke and Baarsdorp

Traditionally, the sole owner of the feudal rights is called "Lord of X" or "Lady of X", where X stands for the name of the lordship. Originally this title belonged to knights. Since the late Middle Ages the title "Lord" is also used for owners of lordships. Since the fourteenth century the lordships of Sinoutskerke and Baarsdorp have always been inherited and sold together, but never have they been formally united.

In 1925, this made it possible for the then owners of the lordships to sell them in parts to various buyers: the land and most of the feudal rights were sold to the famous notary Van Dissel, the fishing rights were sold to the Siepmanbrothers. The Amsterdam title trader ms. Frederika Knufman (1877-1951) bought the title of Sinoutskerke. She only bought the non-exclusive right to be allowed to use the title. Ms. Knufman then sold this non-exclusive right to Mr. A.A. van Rossem (1888-1956). All in all, Mrs. Knufman has certainly done good business. She had already won this trick before: as early as 1916 she sold the right to use the title of the lordship of Lichtenberg, in 1920 she sold the right to use the title of the lordschip of Schagen and in 1924 she sold the lordship of Oudenhoorn. By the time the demand for lordship titles declined drastically during the Second World War and subsequent changes in society, Mrs. Knufman will undoubtedly have earned a fortune.

The question, however, is what exactly the sold 'right to use the title' is. As already written, the title comes automatically with the feudal rights. The title is actually a description or synonym of ownership of the feudal rights. By way of comparison: the title 'lessor' belongs to the person who rents out a residential or business space. Selling the right to use the title "lessor" without transferring the right to rent out the aforementioned space is an impossibility. This also applies to selling the right to use the feudal title without the associated rights associated with it. The van Rossem family and the van Huykelom van de Pas family are both entitled to call themselves "Lord/Lady in Sinoutskerke", because they sold right was non exclusive.

Through inheritance, gift and purchase, the right to use the title and all the feudal rights associated with the lordship of Baarsdorp, are now owned by one owner again. The present owner is also the owner of the feudal rights of the lordship of Sinoutskerke. The descendants of mr. A.A. van Rossem are still using the name of the lordship of Sinoutskerke as a double name and call themselves 'van Rossem van Sinoutskerke'. A member of this family is residing in Italy and owns Lebensberg Castle (Castel Monteleone in Italian), which was beautifully restored by the aforementioned mr. A.A.van Rossem.


Use of name

At the time of the Ancien RĂ©gime (until 1795) it was customary to add the name of a lordship to the owner's surname. This is the origin of many dutch double surnames, which should be regarded as a territorial designation and not as a title. Since 1858 the name of a lordship can no longer be officially added to a surname. Surnames can only be changed in the Netherlands by Royal Decree.

Nevertheless, in practice it often happens that owners of lordships informally add the name of a lordship to their family name. This is the case with the Rossem van Sinoutskerke family. By doing so, they continue a very long tradition, to which we can only applaud.