Henrikki Laavunpoika of Kankainen

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Henrik Klasson Horn

knight Henrikki Laavunpoika or Henrik Klasson, lord of Kankainen and Haapaniemi, of Töytärinhovi etc., according to some anachronistic literature surnamed "Horn af Kanckas" (c.1512–1595) was a Finnish in service of Sweden army commander, officer and gentleman of Kankainen. He was the son of the Finnish High Councillor Klaus Henrikinpoika, lord of Joensuu and Kankainen (c1445 - c1520), in Swedish Klas Henriksson, anachronistically Horn, and his second wife Kirsti/Kristina, and uncle of the baron Klaus Kristerinpoika/ commander Klas Kristersson Horn (as the Swedish language wants to have his name).

Henrikki's elder half-brother. his paternal brother Krister Laavunpoika of Joensuu (est 1480 - c1519), bailiff of Turku castle, was decades older than Henrikki and deceased pretty much the same time (c1520) as their father Klaus, possibly even a bit earlier. Krister left a daughter and a son, the future baron Klaus of Joensuu, the admiral-general (born c1518 or 1519, merely half a decade younger than the young uncle, Henrikki).

Knight Henrikki's Coat-of-Arms depicted a drinking horn, like Arms of his paternal forebears already in the 1400s.

Henrikki was born in c1513 or already in 1512 as son of the (almost) seventy-year-old Klaus of Joensuu, High Councillor, castellan and justiciar, and his second wife lady Kirsti of Salmenkylä of Vehkalahti. According to Sjöström (2011), "Medieval landed inheritances of the Junkar and Vilken lineages of Vehkalahti, Finland", Journal of the Foundation for Medieval Genealogy, vol 3 issue 5 (January 2011), pp 425–461: The parents presumably married in 1511 when justiciar Klaus was commander of the Viipuri castle and administered that province where the young heiress, lady Kirsti resided. Lady Kirsti of Salmenkylä (born before c1495; died in c1553) was heiress of Töytärinhovi manor and its estate (1/4 mantal), as well as of an estate in Reitkalli (1/4 mantal), an estate in Salmenkylä (½ mantal), an estate in Sivatti, an estate in Pyöli (1/6 mantal), and a house and harbor estate in Hietakylä (today Hamina), near the medieval church of Vehkalahti, and additionally heiress of a portion of the Vanhakartano manor of Lammi, in Häme.

The boy´Henrikki was not even ten years old when the elderly father died, probably in Summer of 1520. Mother and son resided chiefly in Haapaniemi manor in Kisko, in borders of Nylandia and Proper Finland, where the mother lady Kirsti, is recorded as widow at least in 1524 and in 1530. In c1531 or in 1530, the widowed mother married anew, with Jaakko Vundrank (fl. 1529, d c1548), an administrator in service of King Gustav I, and a fiefholder of Elimäki in Kymenlaakso. According to: Sjöström (2011), "Medieval landed inheritances of the Junkar and Vilken lineages of Vehkalahti, Finland", Journal of the Foundation for Medieval Genealogy, vol 3 issue 5 (January 2011), pp 425–461: That marriage produced (sometime in the 1530s) a younger half-brother to knight Henrikki, namely Tyni Jaakonpoika Vundrank, lord of Salmenkylä (fl 1560s & 1570s, died before 1584).

In the 1530s the young nobleman Henrikki was in service of king Gustav I, both in royal court and in the military. Apparently he was a competent military, as his services were yet more utilized in those tasks. He was even briefly over-governor of Stockholm castle. Then in various tasks in Finland, inspector of royal revenues, commander of Finnish infantry, since 1549 the justiciar, lawspeaker (chief judge) of Southern Finland.

Henrik worked under king Gustav I of Sweden and his two oldest sons Erik XIV and John III (who ruled Finland under the title of Duke John). He became chief judge in southern Finland during 1549 – 1561. He was also appointed governor of Finland in 1551. In 1555 Henrikki participated in the campaign against Pähkinälinna/Nöteborg.

In the mid-1540s (presumably in c1544), the knight Henrikki had married the Finnish lady Elina Arvintytär of the Teräskäsi-crested family (d 1577 at Kankainen manor, Masku, southwestern Finland), herself daughter of squire Arvi Eerikinpoika, lord of Sydänmaa manor, justiciar of Karelia, castellan of Hämeenlinna (fl 1489, d 1529), and his wife Kirsti Nuutintytär of Laukko (fl 1515; d 1551 at Grabbacka manor, Karjaa), and stepdaughter of the renowned Niiles Grabbe, castellan of Viipuri (d 1549 at Grabbacka manor, Karjaa). In his marriage with Lady Elina, knight Henrikki had at least ten children, including three adult sons Kaarle, Arvi and Yrjänä, and adult, married daughters Kirsti, Kaarina, Piriitta, Elina, Elisabeth and Anna. Particularly through his daughters, within a few generations (such as, from the 1600s), knight Henrikki and his wife Elina became ancestors of almost all the aristocracy of Finland.

King Eric XIV knighted him at his royal coronation (1561). Was sent as commander-in-chief to the Livonian front.

Between 1558 and 1563 Henrikki was one of Duke John's closest advisors. Knight Henrikki then served under King Erik XIV, and was made a colonel in the Livonian War in October 1563. Governor of Estonia (seated at Tallinn, i.e. Reval in Swedish) and highest commander of infantry in service of Sweden in the Baltic provinces. Vanquished a German mercenary force near Tallinn in 1565. Knight Henrikki was summoned to a position of High Councillor in 1566. In 1565 Henrikki became governor of Reval and over Livonia. After commendable activity in Estonia, he lost command in 1567 after the failure of the Swedish siege of Narva in 1579, and was replaced by Pontus de la Gardie.[1]

King John III appointed him as governor-general of Finland, and he served as such 1572- c 1580, including commander-in-chief of all troops in Finland. He was one of leaders of attempted conquest of Northwestern Russia, in 1578-80, but successes were only sporadical in midst of all sorts of failures.

In the 1580s, he acted relegated in defence tasks: castellan of Käkisalmi fortress and governor of Eastern Finland. In 1580s, he settled to Taipale manor which he had built in Masku, and left Kankainen to his eldest son Kaarle Horn, the future Marshal.

By 1584, his maternal half-brother Tyni Jaakonpoika Vundrank, lord of Salmenkylä (fl 1560s & 1570s, died before 1584) had deceased, apparently without own progeny, and Tyni's holdings in Vehkalahti (estates in Salmenkylä, Reitkalli, Hietakylä and Husu-Pyöli) passed to knight Henrikki. Later, in early 1600s, a part of the Vehkalahti properties belonged to Henrikki's grandson Klaus Kaarlenpoika Horn and another part (Töytärinhovi of Vehkalahti) belonged to his other grandson, Henrikki Fleming.

Lord Henrikki died on 21 June 1595 at the age of 83 in their manor of Kankainen, in Masku, southwestern Finland.

His biography (Blomstedt 1921) writes that knight Henrik's name never showed any surname in records in his own time. In the 1500s, usually noblemen in Finland did not use surnames which were exceptions at that time. This means that all variants of surnames attached to him are anachronistic.


  1. ^ Roberts, Michael (1968), The Early Vasas: A History of Sweden, 1523–1611, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p. 263, ISBN 1-00-129698-2 
  • Blomstedt, Kaarlo (1921) Henrik Klaunpoika Horn - Ajankuvaus, I. Kustaa Vaasan ja Juhana herttuan palveluksessa. 1921. 544 pages.
  • Elgenstierna, Gustaf: ättartavlor ... introducerade adeln, vol III
  • Sjöström (2011), "Medieval landed inheritances of the Junkar and Vilken lineages of Vehkalahti, Finland", Foundations: Journal of the Foundation for Medieval Genealogy, vol 3 issue 5 (January 2011), pp 425–461