Gisela of Swabia
|Gisela of Swabia|
Depiction in the Babenberg family tree at Klosterneuburg Monastery, c. 1490
|Empress consort of the Holy Roman Empire|
|Coronation||26 March 1027
St. Peter's Basilica, Rome
|Queen consort of Germany|
|Coronation||21 September 1024
|Spouse||Brun I, Count of Brunswick
Ernest I, Duke of Swabia
Conrad II, Holy Roman Emperor
|Liudolf, Margrave of Frisia
Ernest II, Duke of Swabia
Herman IV, Duke of Swabia
Henry III, Holy Roman Emperor
Matilda of Franconia
|Father||Herman II, Duke of Swabia|
|Mother||Gerberga of Burgundy|
|Born||11 November 989 or 990|
|Died||14 February 1043
Imperial Palace of Goslar, Saxony
Gisela of Swabia (11 November 989 or 990 – 14 February 1043), a member of the Conradiner dynasty, was Queen consort of Germany from 1024 to 1039 and Empress consort of the Holy Roman Empire from 1027 to 1039 by her third marriage with Emperor Conrad II. She was the mother of Emperor Henry III.
She first married the Saxon count Brun I of Brunswick, about 1002. Upon Brun's death, her second marriage was to the Babenberg scion Ernest, who had been enfeoffed with the Duchy of Swabia by King Henry II at the death of Gisela's brother, Duke Herman III and aimed at legitimising himself as his heir. After Ernest's early death in 1015, Gisela became regent for their minor son Duke Ernest II of Swabia (Herzog Ernst). She was then removed from the regency by her third husband on grounds of her being too closely related to the late Babenberg duke, an incident which later led to a major conflict between Ernest II and his stepfather.
Her third marriage, in 1016 or 1017, was to Conrad II, who was elected King of the Romans in 1024 and became Holy Roman Emperor in 1027. According to Thietmar of Merseburg, Archbishop Aribo of Mainz refused to crown her Queen of Germany, as he stated Gisela and Conrad were too closely related. Nevertheless, thirteen days after his coronation, Archbishop Pilgrim of Cologne crowned her instead.
Gisela played an active part in politics, attending Imperial councils and having her uncle King Rudolph III of Burgundy transfer the succession of his Arelat realm to her husband Conrad. Also, she participated in several synods of the church. She took care of her sister Matilda's daughters Sophie and Beatrice, who would both go on to play political roles as Countess of Bar and regent in the Italian March of Tuscany respectively. After Conrad's death in 1039, she and her son Henry III led the mourning progression.
The empress died of dysentery at the Imperial Palace of Goslar in 1043. She is interred in the grotto of Speyer Cathedral, Germany along with several emperors and other members of the imperial family. Her tomb was opened in 1900 and Gisela's mummified body was found to be 172 cm (5' 8") tall, with long blond hair.
Gisela and Brun I, Count of Brunswick had:
- Liudolf, Margrave of Frisia (c. 1003–1038)
- and one other son and two daughters
Gisela and Ernest I, Duke of Swabia were parents to two sons:
- Ernest II, Duke of Swabia (c. 1010 – 17 August 1030)
- Herman IV, Duke of Swabia (c. 1015 – 28 July 1038)
Gisela and Conrad II, Holy Roman Emperor were parents to three children:
- Henry III, Holy Roman Emperor (28 October 1017 – 5 October 1056)
- Matilda (1027 – January 1034), betrothed to Henry I of France
- Beatrix (c. 1030 – 26 September 1036)
|Ancestors of Gisela of Swabia|
- Kagay and Villalon (2003). Crusaders, Condottieri, and Cannon: Medieval Warfare in Societies around the Mediterranean. Koninklijke Brill NV.
- Wolfram and Kaiser (2006). Conrad II, 990-1039: Emperor of Three Kingdoms. The Pennsylvania State University Press.
- "Women in power 1000-1100" from Guide2womenleaders.com, last accessed January 15, 2007
- Braunschweigisches Biographisches Lexikon, Appelhans 2006, ISBN 3-937664-46-7
Gisela of SwabiaBorn: 11 November 989 or 990 Died: 14 February 1043
Cunigunde of Luxembourg
|Queen consort of Germany
Gunhilda of Denmark
|Empress consort of
the Holy Roman Empire
Agnes of Poitou
Ermengarde of Savoy
|Queen consort of Burgundy