Dover Thy, Denmark
The Daughters of DoverDover around the World by Lorraine Sencicle
Dover, Thy, Denmark by kind permission of the Dover Mercury, (KMG) 1st February 2007
This part of Denmark is renowned for its outstanding and contrasting coastal landscapes and Thy is a wild and rugged narrow strip of land on the west coast facing the North Sea. It is also on the list to become a national park. The eastern coast, on the Limfjord, by contrast, is relatively sheltered.
During the Bronze Age (1,700 - 500 BC), the area around Dover was a hive of activity particularly in the export of amber. From this time there are 32 burial on the nearby heath, with a many more hidden in the surrounding woods. Some years ago a minor excavation of two long barrows, some 54metres and 63 metres long, in the Dover woods, unearthed a Bronze Age sword, daggers and an axe.
During the 9th and 10th century many Vikings gathered in this area before they sailed across the North Sea to plunder and wage war along the coasts of Britain and France. The Vikings were not a nation as such but groups of raiders led by chieftains and when a chief was buried, his ship, complete with the shields on its sides, were buried with him. At Dover there are more than 50 small artificial hills - each hiding a Viking chieftain and his ship.
Dover and Doverodde are, these days, sleepy little hamlets set in a beautiful landscape. The largest single employer is a window manufacturer in nearby Hurup; otherwise the economy relies on fishing, pig farms and tourism. The dike between Doverodde and Boddum now encloses a lake called Doverkil, meaning Dover wedge. This has become a nature reserve and together with the natural environment and solitude of the area, attracts people there.
| A lake called Doverkil, meaning Dover wedge
Small artificial hill -
hiding a Viking chieftain and his ship.
Thanks: Liz Hemple Jorgensen, Library and Information Services, Dover, Thy, Denmark.
During the Middle Ages on nearby Boddum, then an island but following silting is now connected by a dike, there was a large farm. Although the ownership changed hands from the Church to Royalty and back, ferries were needed for transportation. This led to the building a jetty near to Dover at Doverodde around which a hamlet grew.
However, it was not until the nineteenth century that Doverodde, literally translated as meaning Dover Point, had its heyday. In the1850s the little jetty played host to ships from Norway, Germany and England. In the centre of the hamlet merchants built their homes and warehouses. These have now been restored with a visitor centre describing the history, and culture of the area.
Dover in Danish means a ravine, gap, gorge or a crevasse between cliffs, which makes me wonder if the name of our town is really came from the Danes rather than the Roman's as generally believe. In Denmark there at least three Dover's, one of which is in Thy (pronounced 'tew') part of the County of Viborg, on the Jutland Peninsula, about 35 kilometres south of Thisted.