Ragnhild Eriksdotter

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Ragnhild Eriksdotter (d. 984?) was the daughter of Eric Bloodaxe and his wife, Gunnhild. According to the Orkneyinga Saga, she was a scheming woman who sought power. Her first marriage was with Arnfinn Thorfinnsson in 954. Gunhildr and her children were returning after Erik's death at Stainmore. Her mother soon left for Denmark and Ragnhild sought her own power. Her husband was supposedly murdered at Murkle in Caithness sometime around 979. Her next husband was Arnfinn's brother, Havard. Havard may have been involved in his brother's murder, but he soon fell prey to Ragnhild's lust for power. Ragnhild convinced Einar Klining, possible nephew of Havard, to kill Havard for which she would marry him and make him Earl. This Einar promptly did. Havard was killed at Stenness on Orkney, though the date is uncertain. Before he could marry her, Ragnhild had promised Einar Hard-Jaw, who may have been another nephew, the same thing, if he would kill Einar Klining. This he did, but then Ragnhild took Havard's younger brother Liot as her husband. After Liot went on to defend Orkney and his claim the Earldom, he died of his wounds after the Battle of Skidmoor in Caithness. No more is heard of Ragnhild.