Prominent Wiarda's

Sjoerd Wiarda


Sjoerd Pijbes Wiarda was the fifteenth ‘potestaat’ (magistrate or governor) of Frisia. He lived on Wiarda-state in Goutum. He was the last potestaat to rule over both Oostergo and Westergo. Sjoerd was the leader in the fight against the count of Holland. In 1398 he was a member of the treaty with Willem van Beijeren, Count of Holland. In 1400 he fought as Schieringer in the battle of Dokkum.

1398 - In this year the Vetkopers (fat buyers) were allies of the Dutch Count Albrecht, who had raided Friesland in 1396. The leaders Gerrit van Cammingha and Feye van Heemstra became feudal lord of Leeuwarden and Leppa and half Dongeradeel respectively. The following year the Schieringers attacked, led by Sjoerd Wiarda from Goutum for Oostergo and Haring Harinxma thoe Heeg for Westergo.

1398 - When Duke Albrecht of Bavaria had taken bloody vengeance on a previous defection from the Frisians, and although he did not have control of the whole of Friesland, but firmly the Southwest corner, Ziwaert Wyaert is among the Fat Buyers, who accepts Albrecht and honor him as Duke of Friesland

The reward of the Fat Buyers for their cooperation with the Duke is not delayed. Thus, on April 8, 1399, Syvaert Wyaerda (Sjoerd Wiarda) becomes feudal lord "die ambocht heerscap ende dagelixe gherecht van Wardum mit sinen toebehoren" to the low jurisdiction over probably Wirdum in Leeuwarderadeel, which lies South of Goutum.

From Schierings-Frisian point of view, Sjoerd Wiarda is an ugly collaborator in these times, handing over the land to the Dutch enemy; in the meantime, it must be borne in mind that the Schierings are now finding allies with the pirate gang of the Likedelers!

This peace proceeded as follows: The Frisians had to lend Willem van Oosterwoud their land and then officially join the Vetkopers. Since the position of Count Albrecht was greatly weakened in the winter of 1399 to 1400, he used his former enemies, the Schieringer Likedelers (pirates) and granted them amnesty. A number of nobles, including Siurt Wiarda, went over to the Schieringers.

1400 - Wiarda probably fought along as Schieringer in the Battle of Dokkum and the Cammingha Stins. After the Frisians chased the Dutch and after the death of Duke Albrecht van Beijeren, Wiarda and Haring Harixma ("Men of the High Gifts and Virtues") were appointed in 1403/1404 as Potestates (governors) of Friesland.

This was an office which the owner held for some time with great power and it was assigned by the Frisians to a person to look after the country's interests when in urgent danger.


GERBENZON, Prof. Dr. P., "Sjoerd Wiarda c. 1400", Wiarda 1369-1969, 20-25 , A.J. Osinga , Bolsward, 1970
Wikipedia, "Sjoerd Wiarda", Wikipedia website
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Tsjomme Wiarda


The most famous member of the medieval Wiarda family has undoubtedly been Tzomme Wyarda (Tsjomme Wiarda). He was the son of Oene Wyarda, who is mentioned as Grietman (Mayor) of Leeuwarderadeel in 1428 and 1438 and he appears for the first time in a transport deed of 20 December 1449 (Sipma I 67 n ° 108). In 1451 and 1457 he acted as co-arbitrator in disputes between two groups of nobles respectively, one group was joined and supported by the city of Leeuwarden and the prior and convent of Bergum with the clergymen and residents of Tietjerk and on 7 October 1456 he was one of the Frisian envoys in Gouda with the Duke Philips of Burgundy, who then threatened to attack Friesland. In 1465 he co-sealed a vidimus and on December 9, 1466 his name was mentioned in a covenant letter between parts and cities of Westergo. Finally, in 1470, he and other delegates again represented the Frisians at Duke Charles the Bold - in Enkhuizen. The Genealogia Ayttana, an overview of Viglius of Ayttas blood relatives, calls him (translated) someone who, in his time, was a man with much influence and authority ("vir magnae potentiae et authoritatis"). According to the same source he died in 1473 and his wife At Bonninga in 1471, the Emingas inherited his goods at Goutum and elsewhere and they were both buried in the Franciscan monastery Galilee, east of the (Dokkumer) Ee outside Leeuwarden, which later decided to transfer the graves for safety within the ramparts of Leeuwarden. Viglius, who had mentioned a few lines beforehand that the Bonningas were related to Feicko Sickinga, whose son-in-law Renicus (Rienk) Bokema had founded the Thabor monastery near Sneek, is silent about the origins of the Galilee monastery, which later was allegedly founded by Tzomme (writes Winsemius (ed. 1622, p. 285). Eekhoff even had him found the monastery on Groendijk outside Sneek in 1462 for the Franciscan tertiaries, a fact that had been set by Worp van Thabor on 1463 without a founder's name. I also leave Eekhoff's statement on his behalf and, for the exact reasons of what had happened to the Leeuwarden monasteries, refer to the study by P. Beda Verbeek, published in 1951, where Wyarda and his wife were scrapped as founders. However, two donations can certainly be made to his name; the aforementioned document from 1449, a transport deed of himself from the Smeyngha estate in Birstens (Birstum to the North of Akkrum, Utingeradeel) has been preserved with the charters of the Franciscan Tertiary Monastery in Aalsum (to the north of Dokkum), to which he donated it. When the latter took place, it is not reported. Possibly the series of well-preserved discharges and renunciations of this and the accompanying Amkema source, of which the oldest is of 3 March 1464 (Sipma 1/109 n ° 171), are connected with it. Since the sisters of Aalsum themselves are only mentioned in a deed of renunciation, which Tzommes cousin Tzallinck Pibazoen Wierda delivered on September 22, 1474, also in the name of his brother Doecke, the sisters do not seem to be in possession of the property until after Tzomme's death. The other, also unquestionable, donation took place on February 28, 1472; after he transferred on 26 July 1471, as testamentary from someone from Oosterwierum, land to the Holy Sacraments Guild in Leeuwarden, the Guild was charged with taking care of the house-sitting poor, he now donated the Syurdisma properties to Lekkum to this brotherhood. However, the legacy was entrusted with the payment of a number of legacies, primarily to the Barefoot Brothers, ie the Franciscan Observants in Galilee, who received two Rhine guilders a year for a soul mass on Friday before St. Michael's Day for his wife (that is probably her day of passing away in 1471 - on September 27), after copying this for his own death for an equal purpose with the same amount. In addition to the poor in Goutum and the Genaert monastery (Genezareth under Hallum of the Cistercian women), the Franciscan tertiaries of Fiswerd near Leeuwarden were conceived on condition that the latter would adopt the stricter rules of life. Tzomme appears to have been well informed about the then relationships and problems with the Franciscan people. He circumvented the prohibition on dealing with money at the Observants, which inhabited Galilee, by stipulating that the (2 x 2) Rhine guilders should be paid in food and drinks. The H . Sacraments Guild was also in 1478 burdened with the care of the then-established St. Jacobs guesthouse, with which St. Anthony guesthouse in Leeuwarden was already transferred to by an older will in the next century (before 1534). In 1865 this fact increased the placement option for the elderly through the foundation of a second building consisting of a main building and four perpendicular wings, the custody of the latter after former benefactors of the guesthouse and since those of the Holy Sacraments Guild were considered by the aforementioned transitions as benefactors of "Sint Antoon", the fourth and most Eastern wing was given the name Wiarda wing. The cross wings bear the names and weapons of all historic benefactors such as Burmania, Minnema, Auckema and Wiarda. This wing, always occupied by men, was completely renovated in the context of modernization in the years 1965-1967. The first year, the upstairs rooms in the "Wiarda apartment " were completed, in 1966 the Wiarda wing followed with the adjacent service rooms, at the end of which a completely new hall was built and in 1967 the complex was expanded with a new beautiful recreation room. In 2020 you can still admire this beautiful complex.


Sipma I, "79 no. 126 en 93 no. 148",
S. A. Gaubema, "De Historie van Friesland", Gouda 1703, p. 59
Sipma 11, "236 no. 217",
Sipma II, "90 no. 87",
Worp van Thabor, "Friesch Gen.", 11/116
P. Hoynck van Papendrecht, Analecta Belgica J, Hagae Comitis 1743, "p. 275",
Sipma 1/165, "Hij was in elk geval 18 Mei 1474 dood, no. 247",
H W. Eekhoff, "Geschiedkundige beschrijving van Leeuwarden I (1846) p. 98",
P. Beda Verbeek, "Oud en Nieuw Galilea. De kloosters der minderbroeders in Leeuwarden", Joure 1951 (Frisi. Catholica XIV)
Sipma 1/169, "no. 254",
Sipma 1/145, "no. 222",
R. Visscher, "De archieven van het St. Anthony Gasthuis (1921) p. 262, regest 42",
Sipma 1/145, "no. 222",
VAN LENNEP, M. J, "Tzomme Wyarda en de Wiardagang in het nieuw st Anthony Gasthuis te Leeuwarden", S. WIARDA (ed.), Wiarda 1369-1969, Bolsward, A.J. Osinga NV, 1970, 26-30
Website Historisch Centrum Leeuwarden, "Sint Anthony Gasthuis", Website
Sint Anthony Gasthuis, "Gasthuis", Website
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Bucho Wiarda


Our knowledge of him is piecemeal. After all, he lived in a troubled time that, for the sake of his belief, drove him to flee from his native country. In such turbulent times there is often a lack of records. We also don't know anything about its exterior. Because although we still have pictures of Bucho 's son, Chancellor Dothias Wiarda, in "today in uninterrupted order, the picture previously attributed to him must represent a later Bucho Wiarda, according to the experts. It is therefore not surprising that his year of birth was controversial There is a manuscript from the beginning of the 18th century regarding the genealogies of some East Frisian families, in which manuscript also reports from Bucho under "Korte Genealogie der Wiarda" and his year of birth is given as 1536. According to the Knyphausens lineage Bucho Wiarda was born in 1530. However, the year 1532, which historian Tileman Dothias Wiarda determined based on old family papers, is probably correct, but his fatherly origins have been more controversial for a long time. De Haan Hettema tried to solve this question, which they are unable to cope with because Tileman D. Wiarda had a Dothias in his genealogy when the father of Bucho had stated what later proved to be a mistake, they came to the conclusion that Bucho was the illegitimate son of the priest Doytse Wiarda. They wrote: " Zie hier den eenigen Doytse, aan wien een zoon Bucho kunnen toekennen ". Tileman Dothias Wiarda did not yet know about the genealogy written by Viglius van Aytta himself, which is printed in the book by Hoynck van Papendrecht "Vita Viglii ab Aytta".

According to the news in this book and with today's knowledge, the origin of the Bucho Wiarda by Boko Wiarda and Rema Tyepma, as recorded by Hans von Wiarda in the German Family Book, appears to be sufficiently justified. This Boko was the 3rd son of Dothias Wiarda and Minthia van Aytta, Dothias died at Barrahuis in 1498,. This is also indicated by the names that Bucho Wiarda gave to his sons: Onnius (named after the brother of Dothias who died in 1498), Dothias (after Dothias w also died in 1498) and Viglius (after the nephew of Minthia van Aytta, Viglius) van Aytta). So Bucho would be a half-brother of Jorrit Bock Wiarda, who is mentioned several times as the owner of Tjerksma State. Bucho Wiarda studied in Groningen (see Joannes Huninga Oostwoldanus, oratio funebris Groningen 1616). In this oratio Bucho is expressly mentioned with his sons Dothias (the later Chancellor) and Ennius (meaning the later professor juris Dr. Onnius Wiarda). According to the family papers, Bucho Wiarda described himself as a licentiate of rights for letters and entries, while Aggäus Albada speaks of Magister Bucho Wiarda in his letters published by Gabbema. He married Aalke Hoitets, daughter of lntet Hoitets, mayor of Bolsward. He professed to the Reformed denomination early on, while his relatives adhered to the Catholic faith. When Duke Alba (from Spain) now threatened to break into the Netherlands, many of the Reformed sought their rescue in East Frisia and various city-states. In 1567 alone there were said to be around 350 households (see: de Vrije Fries V. p. 403). Gabbema gives an illustrative report in "Verhael van Leeuwarden" p. 494: " Dies krielde de Eems en Weser Strooms van Schepen, gestmot vol banen Vlugtlingen, die na Emden en Bremen, daar de gezuiverde Godsdienst bloeide, en zy in vort mogden leven werden ". Among the refugee families we find the names of old Frisian genders, such as the de Wingene, de Pollere, Haringa, etc., who founded flourishing families in East Frisia, from which significant men and women emerged. Heinrich von Wiarda describes in his notes the big picture in the Aurich house of the historian Tileman Dothias Wiarda "Exodus of the de Pottere family". This picture was created by the Dutch painter Ruisdale and is printed in "The Groenevelds" in 1958. It was brought in through marriage by Tileman Dothias' wife, Teelke Susanna de Pottere, a daughter of Helene Maria van Wingene. In the picture you can see the getaway carriage with the de Pottere coat of arms. Like the de Pottere, other families, including those of Bucho Wiarda, were able to save larger assets. This is the only way to explain that he had three sons who studied and also went on longer travels. A registration in Marburg in 1579 shows that Bucho Wiarda, Frisius Licentiatus juris, was in Marburg at the time, probably on the occasion of his son Dothias' transfer from education to university. It can be assumed that Bucho left his land ownership, partly to his relatives. This is supported by a letter from de Vries from the Rijksarchief to Leeuwarden "In 1585 blijken de wezen van Pybe Aedesz. Wyaerda en Cathryn Kempodr. 300, - goud guldens guilty te zijn aan Mr. Bucho Wyaerda. Ze besitten dan een derde van een boerderij onder Bolsward Duitsland, uit het erfgoed van zijn vrouw, die afkomstig was uit Bolsward? "

But what are all saved assets in such a situation! Fate of emigrants, separation of relatives and friends, detachment from the homeland, all of this is reflected in letters that have been preserved. In a letter dated October 8, 1584, Bucho Wiarda thanked his "goeden vrunt" Ackema for the comforting words that he had written in " deze bedroofte starvenstijd ". Bucho Wiarda initially stayed in Bremen. It speaks for his reputation that he soon got to know important men, such as with the count Holstein council and syndic of the cathedral chapter Dr. jur. Tileman Zernemann, who in 1594 became the father-in-law of his son Dothias, who later became Chancellor of East Frisia. Also the correspondence with the famous legal scholar Aggäus van Albada and the councilor Rembertus Ackema probably helped him over many cloudy hours. A letter from the Albada to Ackema on September 25, 1583, printed by Gabbema p. 767, shows that Aggäus van Albada took the son of Mr. Bucho Wiarda as his family friendship and for reasons of friendship (whether amicitiam et affinitatem) , It will have been Ennius Wiarda (also called Onnius). However, the connection between Albada and Ennius Wiarda could not have lasted long since Albada died in August 1584 and Ennius became Professor juris zu Erfurt in 2285 at the age of 22.

Bucho's wife Aalke seems to have come to terms with being a refugee and to have been a caring wife and mother. In any case, one can conclude this from the tone with which Bucho speaks in his letters of his "huysfrau". The couple had 4 sons and 2 daughters. All sons have achieved respected positions in life. Of particular importance to us is the Chancellor Dothias Wiarda, from whom the current German Wiarda’s descend in a direct line. The daughter Regina was with the Brunswick and Nassau council Dr. Arnold Creisser, the daughter Fouka married to the councillor Schmidt in Groningen. Bucho Wiarda died in 1595. Bremen is given as the place of death at one point. But this is hardly likely to be true, because there is more credible information that he most recently lived on the aristocratic Heerd zu Bingum (Rheiderland), which he acquired, and also died there. This farm, also known as Veste Bingum, was still owned by Wiarda at the time of historian Tileman Dothias Wiarda (1746-1826) and was later inherited on the Freiherr von Rheden, a grandson of Gerhard Bucho Wiarda. We can assume with some certainty that he spent his last days far from his direct homeland, but still in the Frisian country and found his peace there due to the professional success of his sons and sons-in-law. Six years later his wife died in Emden, where she lived with her son, then lawyer of the city of Emden, Dothias Wiarda.


WIARDA, Siegfried, "Bucho Wiarda, stamvader van de Duitse Wiarda", S. WIARDA (ed.), Wiarda 1369-1969, Bolsward, A.J. Osinga NV, 1970, 31-34
Wikipedia: Fresheneesz, "The Low Countries", Wikipedia website
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Dothias Wiarda


Dothias Wiarda was a chancellor in East Friesland from 1611.

Wiarda studied at the University of Basel, where he obtained his doctorate in law in 1592. In 1595 he became the first syndic (sort of a lawyer or pensioner) of the city of Emden during the revolution against Count Enno III (1595 when the Reformed took over power ). On September 29, 1601 he crossed over to the side of Count Enno III and became a councillor. Johannes Althusius succeeded him as the syndic of the city of Emden. In 1611, Wiarda was appointed chancellor to succeed Thomas Franzius. He lived in an apartment in the Weinhaus in Aurich and had an office there until his death in 1637. Count Ulrich II then appointed Arnold von Bobart (1585–1653) as Chancellor of East Friesland in 1637.

(* 1565 in West Lauwer Friesland; † February 20, 1637 in Sandhorst) was Chancellor (head of government) in East Friesland from 1611)


Wikipedia, "Dothias Wiarda", Wikipedia website
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Tilemann Dothias Wiarda


Tileman of Tilemann Dothias Wiarda was an East Frisian historian and first secretary of the East Frisian Landscape (a governing body consisting of the provinces of Leer, Wittmund, Aurich and the city of Emden; the district of East Friesland).

He comes from an old West Frisian family. His father was Georg Ludwig Wiarda (born January 26, 1711, † May 3, 1781), first landscape secretary. His mother was Anna Elisabeth Loesing (1716-1773). The two had been married since 1745.


Shortly after his birth, Tileman Dothias Wiarda moved with his parents to Aurich in 1749. There he went to the Gymnasium Ulricianum. In April 1765 he studied law at the University of Duisburg. In September 1766 he moved to the University of Halle. In 1768 he returned to Aurich and became auscultator (trainee) with the East Frisian government. He then became a lawyer at the city and district court of Aurich in March 1770. On January 1, 1781 he was appointed to the government's deputy council, but in May he moved to the East Frisian Landscape to become his father's successor. Back then Wiarda had already built up a good reputation .

1789 - A deputation of four people, including Tileman Dothias Wiarda, was sent to Berlin to resolve various important (national) conflicts and was received by King Friedrich Wilhelm of Prussia. The expressions of thanks afterwards clearly show the extent to which East Friesland was satisfied with the outcome of the negotiations.

1808 - At the request of the King of Holland, an East Frisian deputation (the deputation consisted of members of the government, chamber and the Landscape), including Tileman Dothias Wiarda, travelled to the court in Utrecht at the beginning of January. The deputation was received three times in public (on audience).

In the years that followed, Wiarda was very productive in writing and worked his way through countless documents and files available to him. His literature is not very exciting, but very meticulous and dry. However, he was not the only chronicler, the pastor Johann Dietrich Funk had previously worked on East Frisian Chronicles.

With the defeat of Prussia in the battle of Jena and Auerstedt, the Prussian period ended in 1806. East Frisia was initially added to the Napoleonic Dutch Kingdom but then placed under the First French Empire (Ems-Oriental department). With Napoleon new laws came into force and the old structures were dissolved. Wiarda was still elected head of the Landscape in 1808. When staff were needed for the new structures, he decided to register and therefore became part of the French governing council. Napoleon was defeated in 1813 and East Friesland fell again under Prussia. After the Congress of Vienna in 1815 it passed to the Kingdom of Hanover. With this the landscape structure became valid again and Wiarda was restored as the first secretary of the Landscape, which he remained until his death. He wanted to write down his experiences in other books about East Frisian history and tried to publish as much as possible. He wrote until an old age and died on March 7, 1826.

The author

As the secretary of an institution as old as the East Frisian Landscape and as a lawyer in a country with an old jurisdiction (a jurisdiction that was different from the Prussian laws). A jurisdiction that was even written in Old Frisian, at the time a language that was no longer spoken, it was probably because of this environment, that Wiarda was given the impetus to write down East Frisian history.

His first book was Von den Landtagen der Friesen in the mittlern Zeiten bey Upstalsboom, published in 1777. That he wrote a book about the Old Frisian language is easy to understand in his context. His most important work is without a doubt The East Frisian history in nine parts (later expanded). Its meaning can only be compared with the work of Ubbo Emmius (1547–1625). His work was received with so much applause that the provinces felt compelled to donate a sum of money to Wiarda for his work, Wiarda then refused (probably to preserve his independence).

He was a member of a number of scientific associations of his time:

1778 Pro excolendo iure patrio (Groningen)

1808 Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences (Amsterdam)

1817 Academy of Sciences in Göttingen [3]

In 1817, the Law Faculty of the University of Kiel awarded him an honorary doctorate in law.


1777, Von den Landtagen der Friesen in the mittlern Zeiten bey Upstalsboom

1784, Geschichte der ausgestorbenen alten friesischen or sächsischen Sprache

1786, Alt Frisian Wörterbuch

1800, Ueber deutsche Vornamen und Geschlechtsnamen

1800, Stammtafeln einiger ostfriesischen Hauptlinge, zur Erläuterung der Geschichte

1805, Asega-Buch: ein alt-frisian Gesetzbuch der Rüstringer

1808, Geschichte und Auslegung des Salischen Gesetzes und der Malbergischen Glossen

1820, Willküren der Brockmänner, eines freyen friesischen Volkes

Fragments from the history and topography of the city of Aurich until 1813, composed of his legacy and his published parts about the East Frisian history ::

Until 1441, part 1, (1791)

1441-1540, part 2, (1792)

1540-1611, part 3, (1793)

1611-1648, part 4, (1794)

1648 - 1668, part 5, (1795)

1668-1714, part 6, (1796)

1714 - 1734, part 7, (1797)

1734 - 1758, part 8, (1798)

1758 - 1786, part 9, (1798)

Appendix (1818)

Also partially described with volume 10, volume 11, volume 12:

1817, last East Frisian history 1786-1806

1817, last East Frisian history 1806-1813


Wikipedia (nl), "Tilemann Dothias Wiarda", Wikipedia website
Wikipedia (de), "Tilemann Dothias Wiarda", Wikipedia website
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Adam Forster


Adam Forster was born Carl August Wiarda circa 1850 into a Prussian family, with estates in East Prussia. He grew up in Emden where his lawyer father was a judge and senator. Following tradition the young Carl was sent to Military School, studied medicine, became an officer in the elite Prussian Guard, and won the Iron Cross, First Class, during the Franco-Prussian War. But he was sickened by the slaughter and destruction he witnessed, and saddened by the pathetic plight of refugees, especially during the invasion of Paris. Soon afterwards he gave up his commission and emigrated to South Africa.

He had a talent for figures and went into business in the Cape Province. Here he was attracted to a different sort of figure and married the daughter of the first mayor of Port Elizabeth, beautiful 19-year-old Mary Emma Smith. After the disruption of the First Boer War he realized he could make a better and more stable life for his family in Australia.

Leaving Mary and their three children behind until he could establish himself, he sailed on the Cutty Sark, and en route decided to change his German name to Adam Forster, to create a more acceptable identity in the British colony. On arriving in Sydney at first he did it tough, sleeping under newspapers in the Domain until he again found opportunities.

In 1897 he was appointed Registrar of the Pharmaceutical Board, an office he held for 23 years until his retirement. Also a staunch member of the Pharmaceutical Association, he took an active part in introducing new safety measures for poisons and medicines, including ridged bottles which warned anyone groping for them in the dark that the contents were potentially dangerous. Fluent in seven languages, he was a foundation member of the Sydney German Club, but only English was spoken in the home and he became a naturalized Australian. However he maintained the tradition of decorating the Christmas tree for the children with gingerbread men obtained specially from Germany.

Adam Forster was a distinguished-looking man with a fine flowing mustache, and his gentle, courteous nature, youthful enthusiasm, happy disposition and intelligence made him many friends. They included Billy Hughes, later Prime Minister; Ernest Wunderlich, manufacturer of tiles and stamped metal ceilings; and most importantly the naturalist and pioneer conservationist David George Stead, father of the novelist Christina Stead.

David Stead, co-founder of the Wild Life Preservation Society in 1909, was keen to educate young Australians and encourage their love of nature. He saw the need for a handbook of Australian wild flowers and suggested to George Robertson of Angus and Robertson that Adam Forster would be the ideal illustrator.

Forster had inherited artistic talent from his father, an accomplished portrait painter. But it was his interest in the flora of his adopted country, so different from that of Europe and South Africa, which led him to develop that talent. He set himself the goal of depicting one thousand Australian wild flowers in all their diversity and beauty, and worked assiduously in his free time to achieve his aim. Traveling by tram and train at weekends, accompanied by his wife or one of his daughters, he ranged in search of specimens from Ashfield to the Botanic Gardens, Dee Why and other areas of Sydney where the bushland has long since been cleared, and further afield to Goulburn and the Shoalhaven. The more delicate flowers he painted on site. Others he took home with him.

He was a member of the New South Wales Naturalists' Society and as he occasionally exhibited his work in Sydney, word of his skill and botanical accuracy spread. Soon naturalists from as far away as Western Australia were sending him specimens, each stem carefully embedded in a half potato and packed in damp cotton wool. Forster accepted George Robertson's commission to illustrate a text written by Edwin Cheel, State Botanist of New South Wales, and delivered miniature paintings copied from his larger works to Angus and Robertson in batches. Soon after completing 248 images for the book in 1928, he suffered a massive heart attack and died. About the same time George Robertson also died and the project was shelved.

Almost 10 years later George Ferguson, Robertson's grandson, discovered the blocks and manuscript in the company strongroom. He also was passionate about publishing Australian material, and consulted Stead. Stead by then was in a long-term relationship with teacher and environmental advocate Thistle Harris and deeply admired her knowledge and expertise as a botanist. He recommended that Angus and Robertson should seek her opinion of the material.

Harris considered that the text was too academic for the general reader, who needed less technical information. She agreed to write more reader-friendly notes, but later decided that students required something additional, and compiled a comprehensive botanical key. All for the miserly sum of £15. According to her biographer, Joan Webb, Harris had misheard the verbal offer and thought she had accepted £50! The fee paid to Forster is not known.

But more problems awaited. Like Ellis Rowan and other flower painters, Forster had depicted some specimens against a coloured background to show them better. While the publisher wanted a botanical arrangement, and Harris had prepared one, this was not feasible for printing purposes. So the illustrations and accompanying text had to be reorganized to group them according to backgrounds, which resulted in aesthetically pleasing pages, but not the desired botanical order. Even through later editions when printing techniques allowed the backgrounds to be blocked out, the original arrangement stood. Forster had completed 918 paintings at the time of his death. Most were drawn mainly from plants growing on the east coast, including some of Australia's best known and loved flowers, such as golden wattle, the national emblem, and the handsome waratah, the New South Wales state emblem. But other state emblems such as the striking kangaroo paw and brilliant Sturt desert pea, were also among his subjects, as well as many lesser known and shy species only noticed by keen observers. His images are exquisite, meticulously accurate and elegantly composed. According to his granddaughter, Danise Johnson, botanists sometimes came to watch him work and admire his lifelike watercolours. Once when he had left the room, he returned to find one of them trying to lift the flower from the paper with his fingernail, suspecting that it had been pressed on.

Adam Forster did not live to see his work in print. But in Wild Flowers of Australia Thistle Harris paid a warm and well-deserved tribute to his passion.

'In his enthusiasm he took infinite pains to make his collection as wide as possible, and to this end made many a long and arduous bush trek. I remember him, in his later years, as virile and active as a schoolboy, scrambling over rocky precipices, pushing his way through dense scrub, walking miles without apparent fatigue. And his great joy when some new or long-sought plant was finally discovered. With infinite care the treasure would be stowed for transport; or, if it were too fragile, down he would sit, with little regard to his personal comfort, and make the painting on the spot, filled with the joy of bringing the plant to blossom again on his paper’.

There was considerable interest in acquiring Forster's magnum opus, and the German Government offered him a large sum for the collection. But it was Forster's express wish that it should not leave Australia. In 1949 his family respected his desire to give his paintings to the Australian people and they found a home in the National Library, Canberra, which now holds the copyright. Today they are part of the Library's rich Pictures Collection and have featured in a major exhibition of botanical exploration and illustration in Australia, alongside the works of Ferdinand Bauer and Sydney Parkinson. They have aIso been reproduced on wrapping paper and cards for everyone to enjoy.


Australian National Botanic Gardens, "Adam Forster biography", ANBG website
Wikipedia (en), "Adam Forster", Wikipedia website
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Edzard von Wiarda


Edzard von Wiarda and the creation of the Wiarda family association

Edzard von Wiarda was born on October 9th , 1900. After graduating from high school when he was 17 he moved to the 1st Hanover Infantry Regiment in the First World War. Since he spoke French, he was used as a mounted courier between Germany and France. After the war he studied electrical engineering, a brand new introduced subject in that time. Edzard has been very successful in power supply business throughout his professional life.

From 1960 Edzard continued the genealogical work partly prepared by his father Hans. He followed the individual branches of the family in the Netherlands and Germany and collected countless addresses. In 1965 he was able to convene the first family day with Siegfried Wiarda in Neuenhausen. There the Familienverband Wiarda” was founded and Edzard was elected as the first chairman, this he remained for 24 years.

A family reunion and regular branch elders' meetings every 2 years, alternately in Holland and Germany, were prepared and led by Edzard. He founded our organ, the "Wiarda Nachrichten" and published 14 issues himself. He wrote more than one genealogical contribution for each issue, thus establishing an important link between the family members. The creation and editing of the extensive "name lists" was his work, from which we still benefit today!

In 1970, on the 600th anniversary of the family (1369-1969), Siegfried Wiarda published a Wiarda book (300 pages) with Edzard, with numerous genealogical articles and illustrations in Dutch / German, which was funded by donations for many years.

On a small hill in Goutum, the Wiarda State stood from about 1400, of which our ancestor, Sjoerd Wiarda, had operated. Edzard’s great-grandfather, Christian Heinrich Wiarda, visited Wiarda State with his son Tileman in 1873, which was then demolished in 1882. Edzard had long wanted to create a Wiarda memorial here. In 1980 the family association commissioned the architect Tido Wiarda from Apeldoorn to create the cuboid on a stele. The stele contains the year 1369, the year in which Sjoerd Wiarda was first mentioned in writing. The large cuboid in light stone bears the Wiarda coat of arms and an inscription in four languages: Frisian, Dutch, German and English. The monument was financed exclusively from donations from family members. The monument was handed over to the municipality of Leeuwarden in a big ceremony.

Edzard was able to trace the line of his ancestor line far back using large portrait pictures. The oldest were painted on wood. Many of these pictures were lost during World War II. The Russians processed the oldest pictures painted on wood into firewood. Today there are still 20 ancestral paintings in the possession of his granddaughter Minthia von Wiarda, 13 of which are hung in the house of his son Siurt.

After World War II, Edzard had to work his way back up from scratch . Also he became in 1960 a member of the Lions Club and, together with his wife, was actively involved in many social projects, even when both were over 90 years old . Until Edzard's death in the age of 95, he still wrote many genealogical works for the family.

Author: Siurt v. Wiarda, 2019

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Siegfried Wiarda


Siegfried Wiarda was born Tileman Dothias Siegfried Bucho Wiarda on December 10, 1901 in Jemgum in East Friesland. The naming with three old Wiarda first names already pointed in the direction in which Siegfried would later devote much of his time. He started an academic education which he completed as a doctor of natural sciences (rerum naturalium). Siegfried married Emilie (or as she was later called in the family association, Tante (aunt) Milly) Schirrmacher and had nine children with her. During the Second World War the family lived in Prague (then Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, now the Czech Republic) and tragedy struck, they lost 2 daughters in a bombing raid on Prague (14 February 1945[Wikipedia]).

After the war the family settled in Hestrup and then in Neuenhaus, county of Bentheim. In his working life he was an agricultural policy advisor to the then government (Oberregierungsrat). Siegfried was allowed to put his "theoretical" knowledge of animal husbandry into practice as a farmer in Hestrup. Breeding in particular had his special attention, even after he retired. He contributed to the education of a young new generation of farmers, passing on knowledge to them about assessing and inspecting livestock; he has also published various articles in professional journals on these subjects. He organized excursions for this new generation of farmers, including to Friesland. He was also active in the Emsland studbook. In addition to his work, he was involved in the family studies working group of the "Ostfriesische Landschaft", he researched family histories and published articles about them in the yearbooks of the "Heimatverein" of the County of Bentheim. He was also an active member of the "Vereinigte Evangelische Mission". Siegfried was at the heart of the community and was appreciated for this.

In 1952 Siegfried and Edzard von Wiarda (1900-1996) shared the wish to find many Wiarda’s again after the war, in Germany and the Netherlands. Siegfried was tireless to fathom the family connections and reported about it again and again to Edzard in a very small, very neat handwriting.

It was also Siegfried who in 1952 had already made the first personal contact with Hyltje S. Wiarda in Nijland (near Sneek, Fryslân), which ultimately resulted in the first family meeting in 1965. In the memory of many within the association who knew Siegfried (or Onkel (uncle) Siegfried as he was also called) it was especially the memories of his participation in the Wiarda family days. Siegfried was also known for his tireless efforts in the field of family research and inspiring the members of the Wiarda association. Siegfried, for example, was the one who, commissioned by the family association, complied the family book “Wiarda 1369-1969” (published by A.J. Osinga N.V. Bolsward in 1970).

The first family meeting was held on May 23, 1965 in Neuenhaus Germany. On that family day, Siegfried stood at the entrance of the then Hotel Sickerman to greet everyone personally with a firm handshake. It was then that the first contacts were made between the Dutch and German Wiarda’s. The course of that family gathering was recorded in the first edition of the Wiarda Announcements. There was also an article in the local newspaper of the County of Bentheim, to which Neuenhaus belonged, entitled “85 Wiarda’s trafen sich in Neuenhaus. Eine alte friesische Familie - 1969 600 years Jubilaum ”. And after that many family days were held in which Onkel Siegfried and Tante Milly were present. Siegfried could quite surprise participants in Wiarda meetings because he did not want to go to bed despite the late hour and after a long meeting; he thought it strange that he could not get tired and preferred to have a drink and a cigar. And the next morning at breakfast he surprised everyone because at night he had already drawn up the report of the previous day plus a program of what should still happen that day. His inexhaustible strength and enthusiasm were characteristic of Siegfried. Siegfried wanted to bring all Wiarda’s - anywhere in the world - together and from 1965 his dream came true!


Wikipedia (en), "Bombing of Prague", Wikipedia website
WIARDA, Jan, "herinneringen aan Siegfried Wiarda", Wiarda Mededelingen/ Wiarda Nachrichten, No 11/Ausgabe 11, november 1983, p 65 / s. 65 & E-mails Jelle & Siurt von Wiarda
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Gerard Johannes Wiarda


Gerardus Johannes Wiarda (Amsterdam, 4 September 1906 - The Hague, 12 June 1988) was a Dutch lawyer. He specialized in administrative law. His publications had a civil-law perspective and they dealt with the intersection between public and private law. He also often drew parallels with civil law.

In 1938, Wiarda obtained his doctorate cum laude from Professor Paul Scholten on the dissertation Agreements with Governments, in which he unfolded some thoughts that later contributed to the development of administrative law in the Netherlands and also to the development of public-private partnerships.

After a short career as a judge (where, among other things, he was a judge in criminal proceedings against master forger Han van Meegeren, whom he asked in jail to paint a fake Vermeer), he was appointed professor of Administrative Law at the University of Utrecht in 1948 . His career as a professor would last only a short time.

In 1950, at the age of 44, he was appointed to the Supreme Court of the Netherlands where vacancies were open after the Second World War. During his career at the Supreme Court, he was also active as a director for the Custodia Foundation in Paris (closely related to the Institut Néerlandais). He wrote articles in all kinds of libres amicora and legal journals. In 1962, for example, he wrote an essay on Three Types of Legal Invention, which later - independently published - would belong to the standard literature of all Dutch law students for decades.

Gerard Wiarda was involved in the reform of administrative justice in the Netherlands. From 1973 to 1976, Wiarda was president of the Supreme Court of the Netherlands. After his retirement he first became active at the European Court of Human Rights, where he had been the Dutch representative for several years and of which he would remain president until 1987. Upon his retirement as President of the European Court of Human Rights, he received the Knight Grand Cross in the Order of Orange Nassau.

Born in Dordrecht, the son of a judge, Gerard Wiarda went to study law in 1924 at the University of Amsterdam. His brother Jan Wiarda, who was two years younger, followed him in that study two years later. In 1932 he married Sandra Moltzer (1908 -2009), daughter of a Remonstrant pastor and also a lawyer, who was later involved in the development of poverty alleviation and the social movement. They had four children.

In 1938, under the supervision of professor Paul Scholten, Wiarda obtained his doctorate cum laude on a dissertation concerning Agreements with Governments, in which he unfolded some thoughts that later contributed to the development of administrative law in the Netherlands and also to the development of public-private partnerships.

He owned a small farm in Woold near Winterswijk since 1961. He ordered that none of his awards should be mentioned in his obituary.


Niels Wiarda,
Wikipedia (nl), "Gerard Wiarda", Wikipedia website
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Jan Wiarda


Justice is a wonderful thing; that creeps up on me in everything I read about it, and it never lets go ... Adio, vale and as always
- w.g. Vader

[closing sentence from a letter from Jan to his son-lawyer, April 19, 1988]

How would Father Jan himself started to describe his own life, apart from the fact that he would judge it as completely hypothetical something autobiographically entrusted to the paper…

Probably not at birth, but that of one of his ancestors in the third, fourth, fifth generation. And mention the years, places of residence, education, spouse and profession. Completeness with footnotes to the sadness of the reader, however: a complete picture of the subject had to and should be painted, whether it was about family affairs of all ages - see his contributions to the family book WIARDA 1369-1969 [a, see sources at the end] - or in his numerous legal publications.

Do not be afraid, I will limit myself.

In hindsight, Jan himself would have applauded that, I think…


Jan Wiarda -IV - was born on March 5, 1909 in Dordrecht, where his Father - Jan III [1870 - 1946] - was a judge. A few years later, the family, consisting of mother Louise Lucks [1876 - 1931] and brother Gerardus Johannes [1906 - 1988], moved to Amsterdam, where brothers Gerard and Jan attended the Barlaeus Gymnasium and next studied law. For Jan, this study in no way pointed towards a major scientific career, when he wrote years later:

My oral candidate exam was extended by twenty minutes [“extended exam”, which I applied, recalling what had happened to me, here in Groningen during a few oral doctoral exams]: and I still hear the iudicium in my doctoral degree: “The faculty has at last decided to let you pass”. [B]

Even after their studies, the brothers' lives ran more or less parallel for some time:

Next to Gerard’s' job at the Amsterdam Tax Authorities and that of Jan as an assistant to their admired teacher Prof. Paul Scholten, they each worked on their thesis under the guidance of their promoter - you guessed it - Paul Scholten.

In my mind I see the two brothers in their [ex-] student rooms in the parental home amidst books, old lecture notes and annotations studying their subject, interspersed with trips to the university library. Jan:

I carried many entrusted folio editions Cujacius and Donellus…. by tram, line 2, home, Koninginneweg 130 (top)… [B]

In 1937, Jan obtained his doctorate on the subject Cessie of overdracht van schuldvorderingen op naam naar Nederlands Burgerlijk Recht [i.e. Cession or transfer of registered debts in Dutch Civil Law], a book that for decades was cited as Wiarda's Cession as the comprehensive work on the subject. [B]

In 1939 Gerard planted the seed for his interest in the legal aspects of the private and public relationship between Government and Citizen, which he would always demonstrate in his publications and work with the thesis Overeenkomsten met overheidslichamen [i.e Agreements with government bodies. [D]

In time he targeted the famous notion Algemene beginselen van behoorlijk bestuur [i.e.General principles of good administration].

 Jan then remained a professor at the University of Groningen from 1946 to 1979. He himself has always avoided the usual title of professor and he discouraged students and others from addressing him that way.

After a number of functions in the judiciary and a professorship in Utrecht, Gerard became a member and later President of the Dutch Supreme Court and President of the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. [E]

Mother Louise died in 1931. Half a year later his brother married Alexandra Moltzer and Gerard left the parental home in Amsterdam, where Gerard and Jan had also lived during their student days. Both were fond of their mother. Jan, then 22, couldn't think of leaving his father alone in the big house, the first years after her death. In 1940 Jan married Lucie ter Braak from Eibergen .

Many years later, Father told us how much grief he had from the early death of his mother, but that he had fully reconciled with it and was actually happy that his mother, as a German born, didn’t had to experience the horrors of Nazism in all its expressions.

Gerard and Sandra had four children: Louise [1933], Clara [Claar, for her Uncle Jan, 1934] Elise [1937] and Just [1944]

Jan and Lucie were blessed with four sons: Jan [1941-1993], Willem [1943], Gerard [1944] and Sjoerd [1947].

Further family details of these two generations can be found in the book WIARDA 1369 - 1969, pp. 282/283, nos. XVIh and XVIj, and that of the children and grandchildren in the Wiarda booklets, Branch 7/05 - 7 / 21b.


Wiarda family life was initially very surveyable: two brothers with their wives and each with their four children. Were there any other Wiarda’s? Not that they were aware of….

With heyday in the far north, Gerard wrung his long body into a real Citroën 2CV to attend Groningen holidays.

Jan swore by the train simply because he had never learned to drive a car.

 For mother Lucie this was limited to taking driving lessons in her youth in Eibergen, where she received her driving license after she had succeeded in rounding the Reformed Church opposite her parental home without dents. After that she would never turn the wheel again…

This house on the Groote Straat was the regular holiday destination for the Groningen family at Easter and the summer holidays.

In his old days, father let it slip that those holidays were always the most stressful weeks of the year for him, afraid that the four-in-hand sons from toddler to adolescent age would disturb the rest of his elderly in-laws too much.

Was this one of the reasons that Jan urged one or two of the sons to Münster and Bielefeld in Germany every summer to visit two sisters of his mother Louise - his only direct relatives on the mother's side - who were [also] born in Bielefeld?

The trip was a party for the children: from Aunt Auguste they each received a - in the period of spending restriction in the Netherlands, in the mid-1950s: special - -gift of their choice: a leather football, a real Mont Blanc fountain pen, even an original Lederhose .

 And the daily Kaffee und Kuchen at Aunt Theodore was so exuberant that the sons invariably concluded with an Ich bin satt after presenting the umpteenth slice of the cake. Their first German words, pronounced with a chuckle, because the literal translation in their own language – ik ben zat - was not General Civilized Dutch and therefore out of the question at home….


And then appeared in the early 1960s Onkel Siegfried from Neuenhaus, who had found Wiarda’s living in all kinds of archives all over the world - from Australia to America.

The Wiarda Family Association was founded on his proposal. It was also decided to publish a book about the ups and downs of the Wiarda family from 1369 on, the year in which the name Wiarda was first mentioned in an official Certificate.

[By the way: this reference was moreover due to a wrongful act than to the heroic action of our oldest namesakes: in a judgment of April 30, 1369, the Grietmen of the district of Winninge ruled that Wiarda's people had imprisoned a number of Frisian citizens for no reason. and that these should be set free.]

A board was formed, with German and Dutch family members.

Siegfried started production and editing of the book Wiarda 1369-1969. Many family members contributed.

The book included a family tree, in which the personal register of all Wiarda’s was divided into functional chapters - Branches / Sipping - and the elders of the Branch head/ Sippenältesten made their entrance.

The rest is history: the book was published in 1969 in Leeuwarden at the celebration of the 600th anniversary of the family.

And we went with the times: in 2019, at the commemoration of the 650th anniversary in Goutum, it was decided to design a website!


Back to the actual topic.

The professional day since 1946 often started with a bicycle ride from the house in Helpman, then uptown Groningen, to the building of the University in the centre of the city, where the lecture halls were situated.

Given the broad teaching task - Civil Law, Commercial Law International Private Law and, later, Civil Procedural Law - giving lectures was a regular activity:

Because Wiarda was often carried away by his own eloquence, his students sometimes did not know which of the many subjects they had been listening to  [F]

It was reported that it often happened that at a next lecture Jan asked his student audience about what subject he had discussed the last time….

Unique in the country was his Litigation college:

 a meeting during which a case invented by the students, a legal dispute, was handled and decided by them in the lecture hall throughout the academic year, in which each student had his or her own role as judge , clerk, bailiff, witness, party, lawyer and so on.

 After the written procedural documents and the exchange of arguments during the year, the student court pronounced its verdict just before the start of the academic holiday, in the garden of our childhood home in Helpman, while enjoying beer and wine and mother’s homemade cheese biscuits. [G]

As the evening highlight [?] Jan appeared at the end of the party on the balcony and sang songs by his beloved Swedish composer Carl Michael Bellman, accompanying himself on his twelve-string lute. On many family visits to Sweden in his youth, he had learned the principles of that language.

To this day I meet former students of my father - I am also a lawyer, which helps - and one of the first memories, which they recall, is the garden party at the Verlengde Heereweg….

In addition to teaching, Jan has many scientific publications to his name.

It is beyond the scope of this article to write about this in more detail.

One exception is his magnum opus [1247 pages…]:

in 1957 his adaptation of a part of the so-called Asser series was published, a collection of handbooks covering various areas of law: Personal and Family Law.

As it was said later on: the size of this Asser-volume ... grew out of usual proportions, but it was consulted by every lawyer because every detail was described in it.[F]

Here, too, the elaborate footnotes may have contributed to this.

Where did Jan find all this skills and wisdom?

His own library was extensive. In the old-fashioned deep wall cabinets in his study, dozens of empty cigar boxes from his father [with images of Central Station, Rijksmuseum, etc.] served as a stepping stone for a row of books at the back, so that they remained visible, despite the books in the first row. An unprecedented technical insight for a man, who did not hesitate to ask the carpenter to turn a screw into the wall to hang a painting….

In addition, the University Library was an almost inexhaustible source of books and writings, which really had to be consulted for an article [completeness, remember…]. The books were borrowed by cart loads and because a cart/car was not part of the household goods, everything was carried along on the back of the bicycle. To be returned by taxi after several warnings from the University Library that the loan period had long passed and with a sorry-cake for the employees, on the very last day before school holidays…

Jan's writing life was more and more dominated by his inner conviction and attitude to life, expressed by, among others, the frequently quoted Roman jurists Justinian and Ulpianus, in the ius est ars aequi et boni and honest vivere, neminem laedere et suum cuique tribuere. [Justice is the art of living honestly and the good, honourable life, not hurting one another and giving each one his due. In other words: honest living, reasonableness and fairness.

The choice of the subject of his thesis mentioned above - de Cessie - does not yet indicate this. As an explanation goes that this subject had been suggested to him by his promotor Paul Scholten, because - in his words - your Father's Chamber [in the Court of Appeal; ww] recently issued a judgment about this, which has been annulled by the Supreme Court. It is up to you to study this case.[B]

Nor does the revision of the handbook the Bill of Exchange and Check Law, published in 1950. After all, this was a subject with a specific business character. Jan could not decline the invitation to revise the book of the widow of the editor of the previous edition, his teacher F.G. Scheltema [1891-1939], and his brother and colleague in Groningen. H.J. Scheltema….

In his inaugural speech at the University of Groningen in 1947 [English translation] About the nature and meaning of legal principles, in particular the principles of good faith and fairness in our positive law, his thoughts on law and morality are clearly expressed, which he later elaborated on in various publications, very prominent in his prorectoral speech in 1963 Mercatura Honesta, on the connection between commercial law and commercial morality. [H]

This speech frequently refers to the 16th-century theologian Dirk Volkertsz Coornhert, the tolerant humanist, heretic both Roman Catholics and Mennonites, who may count as an important leader in his legal philosophy to think. As Jan put it in an interview in 1991 [J]:

A virtuous and just life, the art of living, one of the most beautiful Commandments, but people no longer know it. They no longer know who Coornhert is, the apostle of the tolerance and author of the wonderful “Moral Art that is the Art of Well-Being. "

Jan's legal interest shifted thinking from the “I”, the material, the property law - in his words: “business law is such a greedy right” [G] - to the immaterial “We”, the person, the community, the brotherhood.


“All people are your brothers”, I sang for years in the Amsterdam Music Choir, conducted by Willem Mengelberg. This also applies to the largest criminals. Just tell me what's right. You have to understand that people are so incredibly complicated. [J]

Jan referred to his mother, who had trained him with the Alle Menschen werden Brüder, and: I am also a Liberal ,an Arminian, so I don't think along specific lines. [G]

With the spirit of honesty and reasonableness and fairness as constant factors in his way of thinking, those lines were less pronounced in his previous publications on legal claims and commercial law Business transactions simply require a clear legal framework [his words: but what is clear?]. In family law the margin for human relations can play a greater role. There too, however, it cannot result in a complete Vrijheid, Blijheid [Be Happy and Free], his motto in life.

The same motto is fully in line with the statement of principle of the Remonstrant Brotherhood, which places worship to Our Lord - it says God, but Jan found this name too distant and did not use it - faithful to our principle of freedom and tolerance.

Originally raised, he remained throughout his life a faithful and active Arminian.

 The aforementioned Handbook on Personal and Family Law from 1957 shows Jan's growing interest in the more conceptual legal areas.

Among many other subjects, civil youth law is thoroughly discussed from the beginning in classic antiquity.

Thus it was not surprising that in 1965 Jan was appointed chairman of the Government Commission for Juvenile Justice, which prepared a major change to the entire system of juvenile justice and youth protection. Many recommendations of the committee from its report Youth Protection Law [1971] on, among other things, adoption, parental rights and the position of stepchildren have led to various statutory regulations, the best known of which is the law - only introduced in 1988, civil mills - to lower the age of majority from 21 to 18 years…

His university career ended in 1979.

In a letter of November 5, 1979 to the more than fifty persons, who wrote to me that they could not attend my farewell lecture on Tuesday, September 18, 1979, he wrote:

The subject of the college was: LAW. BROTHERHOOD. COMMUNITY. CHARITY. FAITH . And the intention of this is that we should think less in terms of “law” ; and more in terms of “brotherhood, communion, charity, faith/faithfulness” (not to mention the question whether or not these concepts can and may be distinguished!). In doing so, I recalled a few things from the 1909-1979 development of legislation and case law;

and, remembering the performance of the orchestra DE HARMONIE

 before …[the orchestra] son Gerard with his baton; looked at me with a look and attitude that I will never forget.

In short, about everything that was close to his heart in his personal and professional life.

It was a real “happening” that lasted for hours and which, as he did often, ended by singing some old Dutch and Swedish songs while accompanying himself on the lute. [H]

Even after his retirement, Jan continued to read the 7 [seven!] Magazines to which he remained subscribed, as well as the handbooks, but only as far as those parts of the law which were of particular interest to him. He also continued to publish, especially in so called Libri Amicorum for colleagues in the country who were taking leave. [K]

Do you remember the cigar boxes in the bookcases in his room?

After his death in 1993, the question was what to do with those thousands of books and writings - including his own lecture notes as a student and as a professor….

It was a god sent that the Library of Groningen University offered to take stock of the collection.

Everything was transported to the library in a three-ton truck. Two years later, the University Library invited us to view the result of the inventory: every item was neatly classified and catalogued… 240 running meters….

Specially the librarian mentioned that there were 70 titles , which were not part of the University Library itself.

The family was given the opportunity to find out which items they wanted to keep and subsequently donated the entire library to the University Library.


In addition to the legal work, there was time for social activities.

 As chairman of the Groningen branch of child protection association Pro Juventute, he regularly visited pupils in family replacement institutions across the country. During holidays sometimes accompanied by a son, their contemporaries, to make easy contact.

Jan was also for many years a member of the Education Council for Scientific Education, an advisory board of the national government.

And in his spare time? Music and Walking.

In Groningen, Jan continued his love of singing, which he had started in Amsterdam in the Amsterdam Toonkunstkoor under Willem Mengelberg, the conductor of the Concertgebouworkest.

 In Groningen for years he attended every Monday the repetitions of the Music Choir Bekker, a broad repertoire from Jeanne d'Arc au Bûcher from Honegger to, of course, Bach’s Matthaeus Passion. The latter with, partly successively, the four sons in the boys' choir, as long as their voices were not breaking….

At every family celebration a self made song on an old German [Boerlala, Jan Hinnirk] or Swedish melody, with lute!

Walking and cycling on the Wadden Islands, until every beach and dune pan had been visited, all the lighthouses had been climbed and the last self-stuck kite had failed. Then, the Austrian Alps became a regular destination during the summer holidays.

Not to forget the annual walk with “his” students in the neighbouring national park Appèlbergen,

The sons have fond memories of the three-day hikes, they each made with their father in his seventies in the German region Sauerland: eight hours a day next to your dearest stroller, constantly humming, and then a glass of beer ...


This is a story about my father.

 But it is only half the story: it is not complete without my mother's share,… his wife, who was not unjustly called the mother of the faculty[G]

Without her, Jan would have sailed unruly through the waves in the oceans of all those letters in books, brochures and numerous articles, enjoying the beauty of legally coloured vistas and destinations looming in the fog. But without worrying about the course, wind direction, position of the sails, forage [have I already had my second cup of tea?]. And above all, the unconditional support of the real captain!

A loving couple, more than 50 years…

Mother, who engraved a glass artwork for her Jan with Vondel's text:

Waar werd oprechter trouw
dan tussen man en vrouw,
ter wereld ooit gevonden.

[where does one find fidelity
as between a man and his lady
anywhere in the world…]

And father who presented every Saint Nicholas a chocolate letter to his Lucie with the text:

De L-iefste letter, gij weet het wel,
blijft voor mij de letter… L!

[the letter L of Love, you know it so well,
to me forever remains … the letter L ]


Witten by Willem Wiarda, Broek in Waterland, 10th of April 2020


[A] WIARDA 1369 – 1969, "Siegfried Wiarda", uitgeverij Osinga, 1969
[B] Ars Aequi, "juridisch studentenblad, nr 34 [1985] 12 [special “Op gezag van…”]",
[C] Jan Wiarda, "proefschrift Cessie of overdracht van schuldvorderingen op naam naar Nederlands Burgerlijk Recht, 15.01.1937",
[D] Overeenkomsten met overheidslichamen, "academisch proefschrift", Zwolle, 1939
[E] Tjeenk Willink, "Ex tunc ex nunc, bundel interviews met o.a. Gerardus Johannes Wiarda, W.E.J.", 1990
[F] Jan Lokin, "De Groningse faculteit der Rechtsgeleerdheid", uitgeverij Boom, 2019
[G] Terecht Gesteld ,Groninger juridisch fakulteitsblad, Wiarda nummer, "jaargang 14.1, 18.09.79",
[H] Mercatura Honesta, "prorectorale rede", 23.08.62
[J] UK, "universiteitskrant RuG", 11.04.1991
[K] Nederlands Juristenblad, "Nestor Speciaal", jaargang 65, 13.12.90
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Yme Hendrik Wiarda


Yme was born in Donkerbroek (Municipality of Ooststellingwerf) as the oldest in a family of 4. After successfully completing his A-levels, Yme went to the maritime training School in Amsterdam. At the time, that was the prior education that you had to follow to become a pilot. This had always been Yme's deepest wish since his childhood in Friesland. He was already active in gliding before he moved to Amsterdam. After the German troops invaded the Netherlands and the Dutch troops had surrendered on May 15, 1940, the Netherlands was occupied and the maritime training school was closed. As a result, Yme was forced to return to Friesland where he started taking courses in electrical engineering and then looking for a job. He found that job at Philips in Eindhoven.

As Germany needed more and more workers in the course of the war to keep the factories running because most German men were in the army, workers were actively recruited in the occupied countries, including the Netherlands. Yme absolutely did not want to go to Germany and just before the notorious SD (the Sicherheitsdienst) wanted to arrest him he went into hiding. From his hiding place he applied internally within Philips for a position in the workplace in Camp Vught (the so-called Philips Kommando), in the lion's den.

Camp Vught was a concentration camp where Jewish Dutchmen had to go as the first station before they were eventually transported to the extermination camps in Germany. Dutch political prisoners were also detained, including those sentenced to death for acts of resistance against the Germans. In 1943, the Germans had asked Philips to establish a workshop within the barbed wire of Camp Vught. At the urgent request of "Berlin", work had to be provided to the prisoners of Camp Vught. Director Frits Philips agreed subject to conditions. These conditions were that Philips was in charge of the workplace, that Philips employees could freely enter and leave the camp and that Philips determined what work was done.

Yme reasoned that the Germans would definitely not be looking for him there. He thereby became one of the Philips civilists: they formed an important link in the contact of workers of the Philips Command with the outside world. They passed on messages that prisoners could not write in the official letters or who could not wait that long. Yme played an important role in this. Through him, for example, a father hears the birth of his first son. He also actively helped the Jewish internees within the Philips workshop, for example, by taking a solder test with Jewish girls. If the girl does not do the test properly, then he does the test again, so that she was nevertheless accepted, which was of vital importance to her otherwise she immediately went on transport to the extermination camps in Germany.

On his birthday on August 25, 1944, Yme was arrested by the SS within Camp Vught after being caught exchanging information with a prisoner about his upcoming trial. He was imprisoned in the infamous "Bunker", a prison within Camp Vught. Until 6 September he was alone in a cell, totally isolated from the outside world, waiting for the many interrogations of the SD he had to undergo. In August 1944, prisoners were taken from the bunker by the SS and SD almost every day and executed outside the camp without trial.

My father has given a testimony about this period that has been archived at the NIOD (Netherlands Institute for War Documentation) in Amsterdam. In it he accurately describes the circumstances in the bunker, his cell, the food and the interrogations that he had to undergo.

Because of the approaching Allied troops, the Germans fled around "Mad Tuesday" on 5 September 1944 and evacuated the camp. The remaining prisoners were deported to Germany and the next day Yme was released. A few weeks later he experienced the liberation of Eindhoven and Vught on October 19, 1944. Soon after, he was invited by the Dutch government to complete his pilot training in England with the Royal Air Force. In January 1945 he started training as a Bomber pilot in Bridgenorth. Even before he could fly as a fighter pilot (June 1945), the whole of the Netherlands was liberated and Germany had capitulated.

After the end of the war, the Royal Dutch Airlines KLM had a large shortage of pilots; Yme’s ambition had always been civil aviation instead of military aviation, so he joined KLM. He has been with KLM for more than 30 years until his retirement in 1976. During his employment he has flown on many aircraft, switched from aircraft with propeller propulsion to jet engines, he was at the basis ofAssociation of Dutch Pilots (union) in the battle for recognition with the KLM management. He was also stationed for KLM at the start of his career in the Dutch East Indies, Surinam and in the Dutch Caribbean, in the early 1960s he was loaned to TAP Portugal and lived with his family in Estoril. Yme is one of the few pilots who has spent more than 20000 flying hours in the air. These high numbers are no longer achieved because the current aircraft are much faster. During his career he has flown, among other things, on the Tiger Moth (RAF training plane) and for KLM on the Super Conny (The Lockheed Constellation) and DC 7, the last propeller planes employed by KLM. After intensive training, he became captain on the long 8 (DC-8) to eventually end his flying career on the DC 10. After his retirement with KLM at a relatively young age (56), he continued to fly on the DC 10 for 2 years with Martinair, a Dutch charter company.

In 1953 Yme married NonnyAmersbeek in Amsterdam (1926-2012); together they had 3 children and in the late 50s they moved to Bilthoven. From the beginning, Yme was involved with the Wiarda association. After the unexpected death of Hijltje Wiarda in 1967, Yme became chairman of the Dutch Wiarda Association. As a result, he was actively involved in the birth of the association, the Wiarda book and the family days. In 1989, Yme took over the chair of the entire family association from Edzard von Wiarda and remained so until his death on September 3, 1993, when he died at the age of 73 after a short illness


WIARDA, Tjalling, "Mijn trip naar het Joop Westerweel woud", Wiarda Mededelingen No 29, Oktober 2017, 8-17
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Howard Wiarda


Born in Grosse Pointe, Mich., he grew up in Grand Rapids and received his bachelor’s degree in history and political science at the University of Michigan in 1961 where he was editor of the student newspaper. He earned his doctorate in political science at the University of Florida in 1965.

Wiarda came to UMass Amherst directly from graduate school. He began as an assistant professor and quickly rose through the ranks to become a full professor at 33 (a record unbroken for the department) and was one of the youngest full professors in the history of the university.While here, he served as editor of Polity. He was also the director of the Center for Latin American Studies and chairman of the University’s Council for International Studies

Wiarda joined the political science department in the fall of 1965 and retired in 2003 to become the founding head of the department of international affairs at the University of Georgia and the Dean Rusk Professor of International Relations. Wiarda was a world-class scholar and major figure in the study of comparative politics and foreign policy.

He was a visiting scholar/research associate at the Center for International Affairs at Harvard University,where he also directed the faculty comparative politics seminar. From 1981-87 he was resident scholar and founding director of the Center for Hemispheric Studies at the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research in Washington. He divided his time between Washington, Cambridge and Amherst, regularly teaching undergraduate and graduate courses for the political science department and directing doctoral dissertations. He served as lead consultant (1983-84) to the National Bipartisan (Kissinger) Commission on Central America and was Thorton D. Hooper Fellow in International Security Affairs (1987-88) at the Foreign Policy Research Institute. He joined the Center for Strategic and International Studies in 1992, becoming a senior associate. In 2000 he was appointed public policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

He served by appointment of the president of the United States on the Presidential Task Force on Project Economic Justice. He was a consultant and adviser to four presidents and a variety of private foundations, business firms and agencies of the federal government, including the Department of Defense, the National Defense University and the Center for Hemispheric Studies.

He was a member of the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. In 1988 he served on Vice President George H.W. Bush’s foreign policy advisory team. In 2012 he was inducted into the Order of Columbus by President Leonel Fernández of the Dominican Republic, his former student at UMass Amherst, for a lifetime of service to and writing about the Dominican Republic.”

Wiarda was the author and/or editor of more than 100 books and the author of more than 300 scholarly articles, book chapters, op-eds and congressional testimony. Among his many books are The Dominican Republic: Nation in Transition,” Politics in Iberia: The Political Systems of Spain and Portugal,” Corporatism and Comparative Politics,” The Soul of Latin America,” and Divided America on the World Stage: Broken Government and Foreign Policy.” He also was co-author and editor with Harvey F. Kline (a former member of the political science department) of the leading textbook Latin American Politics and Development,” now in its eighth edition).


Umass, "Obituary: Howard J. Wiarda", Umass website , 15-09-2015
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Jan Wiarda


Jan was a farmer's son from the Frisian Wymbritseradeel. Next to a lifelong passion for horse riding, he derived from that heritage a quirkiness and the belief that people need space to shape their lives.

In 2005 when he said goodbye as project leader Police of the Dutch EU presidency he stated that it was his father who had instilled that view in him.

Jan Wiarda was admitted to the National Institute for the Training of Senior Police Officers in 1959, aged eighteen. He belonged to the second batch that could start without military officer service and therefore received extended training, with many military components as compensation. The twenty-five boys were internally and noticed little of the beginning of prosperity growth or of the first (turmoil) in society.

However, when they ended up in the corps as inspectors after three years, they discovered that they were much better trained than their immediate superiors. Also later they reacted very differently to the new youth culture of the sixties. For many, this awareness was the seed of a later urge for reform. Wiarda was placed with the Utrecht municipal police. In 1979 he left the police for a short time to become head of the security service of the Nederlandse Middenstandsbank (NMB).

In 1982 he was asked for the position of chief superintendent at "his" Utrecht corps. The confidential committee and especially the mayor of Utrecht Lien Vos van Gortel wanted an innovator and they got it with Wiarda . After taking office, Wiarda made it clear that he was serious about placing young, kindred colleagues in all vital positions. Wiarda showed decisiveness, but it was also clear that after the years at NMB he was more relaxed in life. This, while young and youthful, gave him a sovereign attitude that gave confidence to his associates. Their identification with the new boss was reinforced by the fact that Wiarda, through his involvement with civilians, plunged into all kinds of incidents and then did not shy away from making sly statements as a policeman. Famous is his understanding of robbery-haunted shopkeepers who kept a baseball bat under the counter.

Wiarda is considered an outspoken leader. He has proven his managerial qualities when transforming the Utrecht municipal police into a regional police force. He sees himself as an 'Einzelganger'. If I don't like it, then I'll say it too. If they all want to turn right and I think it should go left, the best chance is that I will turn left. ”

In September 1997 he left for the Haaglanden Corps where he remained chief of police until August 2003. After this, he started to prepare the police program of the Dutch EU Presidency. The end result was The Hague Program, which until 2010 determined European policy for police and justice

Jan Wiarda was a special policeman in a special time. More than a designer, he was the inspiration and catalyst for the drastic change and improvement of the police in the last four decades. He recognized early on that the police in which he worked had fled in routine and bureaucracy, thus avoiding its social challenge. Breaking this trend was his second nature: he had inherited that from home, he led in the seventies and later also managed his corps. He was concerned with civilians and their problems. Police could do something about it and should not fail to do so. That engagement with citizens also meant that all his leadership skills were not seen by his employees as a management trick, that he could really get them moving.

Wiarda enjoyed the commotion he caused in this way, more than the actual administration. For a police who like to lock themselves up in their own world, such chiefs are indispensable.


MEERSHOEK, Guus, "Jan Wiarda: geëngageerd, dwars en loyaal", Het Tijdschrift voor Politie , jaargang 75, Nr 3/13, 23-26, 2013
BOUMA, Joop & George MARLET, "Jan Wiarda weet wat hij wil, en daarom vonden ze hem lastig", Trouw Website , 22-08-1997
Provinciale Zeeuwse Courant, "N.N., Oud-Korpschef Wiarda overleden", Website , 07-02-2013
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