LADY SOPHIE LYKKE'S QUARRELS WITH THE KING AND PEASANTS - A DANISH-NORWEGIAN 16TH CENTURY BUSINESSWOMAN'S STORY (O tym, jak pani Lykke z chlopami i krolem wojowala, czyli o kobiecie interesu w XVI-wiecznej Danii - Norwegii)
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Sophie Lykke was a noble woman living in the second half of the 16th century (born in the 1520s, died in 1570) in Denmark-Norway under the rule of Oldenburg dynasty. Her story provides individual material to the history of economic activity of Danish nobility (trade, mainly of oxen, and timber in Norway), the conflict with the Crown because of its attempts to limit the power and privileges of the nobility, and conflicts between the nobility and peasants. Lady Lykke was thus a typical representative figure of the 16th century Renaissance Danish nobility in terms of her frequent neglect of law, the willingness to solve problems in an arbitrary way and an obvious quarrelsome disposition. This, together with her arrogance, strong beliefs in the special, superior to the king, status of nobility, and finally greed, often drove her to the court. Another source of problems was connected with her way of treating peasants, especially in Norway, where they were enjoying a relatively free status and were used to the authorities respecting the law and their privileges. As a lensherre (chief of a county) in Lister, Southern Norway, she became one of the most famous peasant-oppressors (bonde-plagere), a symbol of Danish oppressive rule over the Norwegian people. Nevertheless, some historians, trying to weaken this black legend, suspect that there was a personal conflict between her and the royal court in Copenhagen. Lady Sophie Lykke - despite her name (Ddan. lykke - luck) - could probably also suffer from bad luck.
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