Estrid of the Obotrites

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Estrid of the Obotrites
Queen consort of Sweden
QueenChess11thCentury.jpg
A Swedish depiction of a queen as a chess piece carved in bone in the times of Queen Estrith
Queen consort of Sweden
Tenure 1000–1022
Predecessor Aud Haakonsdottir of Lade
Successor Gunhild
Spouse Olof Skötkonung
Issue
Anund Jacob
Ingegerd Olofsdotter
House House of Munsö (by marriage)
Father A tribal chief of the Polabian Obotrites
Born 979
Died 1035 (aged 55–56)

Estrid (or Astrid) of the Obotrites (ca. 979 – 1035) was a medieval and Viking age Swedish Queen consort and West Slavic Princess, married to Olof Skötkonung, the King of Sweden, ca. 1000–1022, mother of King Anund Jacob of Sweden and the Kievan Rus' Saint and Queen (Grand Princess) Ingegerd Olofsdotter.

Biography[edit]

Legend says that Estrid was taken back to Sweden from a war in the West Slavic area of Mecklenburg as a war-prize. She was most likely given by her father, a tribal chief of the Polabian Obotrites, as a peace offering in a marriage to seal the peace, and she is thought to have brought with her a great dowry, as a great Slavic influence is represented in Sweden from her time, mainly among craftsmen.

Her husband also had a mistress, Edla, who came from the same area in Europe as herself, and who was possibly taken to Sweden at the same time. The king treated Edla and Estrid the same way and gave his son and his two daughters with Edla the same privileges as the children he had with Estrid, though it was Estrid he married and made Queen.

Queen Estrid was baptised with her husband, their children and large numbers of the Swedish royal court in 1008, when the Swedish royal family converted to Christianity, although the king promised to respect the freedom of religion - Sweden was not to be Christian until the last religious war between Inge the Elder and Blot-Sweyn of 1084-1088.

Snorre Sturlasson wrote about her, that Estrid was unkind to the children (Emund, Astrid and Holmfrid) of her husband's mistress Edla; " Queen Estrid was arrogant and not kind towards her stepchildren, and therefore the king sent his son Emund to Vendland, where he was brought up by his maternal relatives".

Not much is known of Estrid as a person. Snorre Sturlasson mentions her as a lover of pomp and luxury, and as hard and strict towards her servants.

Children[edit]

References[edit]

  • Herman Lindqvist: "Historien om Sveriges drottningar" (History of the queens of Sweden) (2006) (In Swedish)
  • Åke Ohlmarks: "Alla Sveriges drottningar" (All the queens of Sweden) (In Swedish)
  • Snorri Sturluson

Succession[edit]

Estrid
Born: 979 Died: 1035
Swedish royalty
Preceded by
Aud Haakonsdottir of Lade
Queen consort of Sweden
1000–1022
Succeeded by
Gunhild