Margaret Fredkulla

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Three kings on the contemporary Skog tapestry have been thought by historians Lagerqvist and Åberg possibly to allude to the Scandinavian summit meeting where Margaret the Colleen of Peace was betrothed to the Norwegian king.

Margaret Fredkulla of Sweden (1080s – 4 November 1130) was a medieval Scandinavian queen, Princess of Sweden and Queen consort of Denmark and Norway, married to King Magnus III of Norway and King Niels of Denmark, and regent de facto of Denmark. She is known as Margareta Fredkulla in Sweden, Margret Fredskolla in Norway and Margrete Fredkulla in Denmark.[1] An English exonym is Margaret Colleen-of-Peace.

Biography[edit]

Margaret was born a royal princess as one of four children of King Inge the Elder of Sweden and Queen Helena. The exact year of birth and place of birth is not recorded.[2]

In 1101, she was married to King Magnus of Norway. The marriage had been arranged as a part of the peace treaty between Sweden and Norway. She was often referred to as Margaret Fredkulla (Margaret the Maiden of Peace). She brought with her large fiefs and areas in Sweden as her dowry, probably in Västergötland. In 1103, she was made widow after two years of marriage, and soon left Norway. The marriage was childless. Her departure from Norway was seen as an insult by the Norwegians who expected her to stay, and she was accused of having stolen the holy relics of Saint Olav.

In 1105, she married King Niels of Denmark. Niels was made king in 1104, but he was described as a passive monarch who lacked the capacity to rule and who left the affairs of the state to his queen. With his blessing, Margaret became the de facto Queen regnant of Denmark. She is described as a wise ruler, and the relationship between Denmark and her birth country Sweden was very peaceful during her time as queen. It was said that: Styrelsen beroede for størstedelen paa den ædle dronning Margrete, saa at fremmede sagde, at Danmarks styrelse laa i kvindehaand (English: "The rule was so much dependant on the noble Queen Margaret, that foreigners remarked that the rule of Denmark lay in a woman's hand"). She minted her own coins, something unique for a queen consort of this time. The Danish coins printed during this period bears the inscription: Margareta-Nicalas ("Margaret-Niels").[3] In 1114, Margaret was sent a letter by Thibaud d'Étampes (Theobaldus Stampensis) thanking her for a liberality to the Church of Caen.[4]

Queen Margaret had two children with King Niels:

After her death in 1130, King Niels married Queen dowager Ulvhild of Sweden. Margaret's lands in Sweden became a base for her son, Magnus when he claimed the throne of Sweden through her. When Margaret's first cousin King Inge the Younger died, Magnus claimed the throne as the eldest grandson of King Inge the Elder and reigned as King Magnus I of Sweden.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Margrete Ingesdatter “Fredkolla” (Store norske leksikon)
  2. ^ Margrete Fredkulla (Dansk Kvindehistorie)
  3. ^ Margareta Fredkulla (Ingesdotter)
  4. ^ Bernard Gineste, "Thibaud d'Étampes", in Cahiers d'Étampes-Histoire 10 (2009), pp. 43–58, showing that this letter was not sent to Margaret of Scotland, dead in 1089, but to Margaret Fredkulla.

Other sources[edit]

  • Harrison, Dick Gud vill det – Nordiska korsfarare under medeltiden (2005)
  • Nanna Damsholt Kvindebilledet i dansk højmiddelalder (1985)

External links[edit]

Succession[edit]

Margaret Fredkulla
Born: 1080s Died: 1130
Preceded by
Ingerid of Denmark
(Queen consort)
Royal Consort of Norway
(Queen consort)
1101–1103
Succeeded by
Ingebjørg Guttormsdatter
(Queen consort)
Preceded by
Boedil Thurgotsdatter
(Queen consort)
Royal Consort of Denmark
(Queen consort)
1104–1130
Succeeded by
Ulvhild
(Queen consort)