Gerrit de Graeff (I.) van Zuid-Polsbroek

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Gerrit de Graeff (I.) van Zuid-Polsbroek
Gerrit de Graeff (1711-1752).jpg
Chairman of the Dutch East Indies Company and the Dutch West Indies Company
In office
1736 / 1737–1752
Preceded by Mattheus Lestevenon I
Personal details
Born 1711
Died 1752
Nationality Dutch
Political party States faction
Spouse(s) Elizabeth Lestevenon
Relations Mattheus Lestevenon (brother in law)
Children Geertruid Joanna, Gerrit, Elisabeth Jacoba
Residence Castle Ilpenstein and a Cityhouse at Herengracht 573
Occupation Regent, Landlord

Gerrit de Graeff (I.) van Zuid-Polsbroek (February 27, 1711 in Amsterdam – November 10, 1752) was a member of the De Graeff – Family from the Dutch Golden Age. De Graeff was known for his wealth and notorious for his stinginess.[1]


Gerrit was the son of Johan de Graeff and his wife Johanna Hooft.

In 1734 he married Maria Elisabeth Sautijn, and in 1739, after his first had died, with Elizabeth Lestevenon (1716–1766). Mattheus Lestevenon, the Dutch ambassador to France, became his brother-in-law. With his first wife he had one child, Johan de Graeff, who died at the age of 19. With his second wife he had six children; Abraham (1743–1744), Pieter (1746–1762) and Elisabeth Jacoba de Graeff (1748–1750) died young.

  • Geertruid Joanna de Graeff (1740–1801) was first married to Isaac Ernst des H.R. Rijksbaron de Petersen (1737–1783), and in 1790 to Mr. François Jacob van de Wall (1756–1834).
  • Gerrit de Graeff II. (1741–1811) married in 1765 Christina van Herzeele (1748–1798).
  • Elisabeth Jacoba de Graeff 1751–1802 married in 1768 Jan des H.r. Rijksbaron De Petersen (1745–1786), the younger brother of Isaac Ernst.

Career, art and lifestyle[edit]

In 1732 De Graeff finished his studies at the University of Leiden.[2] In 1736 he became one of the chairmen of the Dutch East Indies Company (VOC).[2] One year later he was also appointed as one of the Chairmen of the Dutch West India Company (WIC).[3] In 1739 he became a member of the vroedschap, and captain in the schutterij. From 1748 to 1752 he was one of the directors of the Company of Surinam and commissaris in Noorderkwartier.

Gerrit de Graeff lived at Herengracht, in a mansion now the Tassenmuseum Hendrikje. In the first half of the 18th century an extensive renovation of the building takes place, particularly of the interiors. In the large period room various ceiling paintings and a mantelpiece with richly carved and gilded ornaments were installed. A richly ornamented chimneypiece in the late Louis XIV style was placed in the small period room.[1] Most of the time he resided at his castle Ilpenstein. He also owned Bronstee, a country estate near Heemstede. De Graeff had a famous art collection, and sold some of the family paintings to an art dealer from Hamburg. William VIII, Landgrave of Hesse-Cassel bought Jacob Blessing the Sons of Joseph (the sitters were Wendela de Graeff and her two sons)[4] and the Portrait of Andries de Graeff[5] The two famous paintings, both by Rembrandt, can be seen in Wilhelmshöhe in Kassel.

Noble titles[edit]

Gerrit de Graeff (I.) van Zuid-Polsbroek
Born: February 27 1711 Died: 10 November 1752
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Johan de Graeff
Lord of the semisouverain Lordship Zuid-Polsbroek
Succeeded by
Gerrit de Graeff II.
Preceded by
Cornelis de Graeff II.
21st Lord of the Free and high Lordship Purmerland and Ilpendam
Succeeded by
Elizabeth Lestevenon


  • Graeff, P. de (P. de Graeff Gerritsz en Dirk de Graeff van Polsbroek) Genealogie van de familie De Graeff van Polsbroek, Amsterdam 1882.
  • Bruijn, J. H. de Genealogie van het geslacht De Graeff van Polsbroek 1529/1827, met bijlagen. De Bilt 1962–63.
  • Moelker, H.P. De heerlijkheid Purmerland en Ilpendam (1978 Purmerend)
  • Elias, J.E., De Vroedschap van Amsterdam 1578–1795 (1903–1905 Haarlem), p. 693.


  1. ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on September 28, 2007. Retrieved September 28, 2007.  House at Herengracht 553, now called Tassenmuseum Hendrikje
  2. ^ a b [1] Gerrit de Graeffs Biographie at the "DBNL" (dutch)
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on June 24, 2015. Retrieved February 14, 2009.  De Graeffs Biographie from Heren van Holland
  4. ^ [2][permanent dead link] Rembrandts Jacob Blessing the Sons of Joseph, Staatliche Museen Kassel
  5. ^ [3] Rembrandts Portrait of Andries de Graeff, Staatliche Museen Kassel