Spytihněv I, Duke of Bohemia

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Spytihněv I (c. 875 - 915) was Duke of Bohemia from 894 or 895 until his death.

He was the eldest son of Duke Bořivoj I, the first historically-documented Bohemian ruler of the Přemyslid dynasty, and his wife Ludmila. He was still a minor upon his father's death c. 889, and the Bohemian lands were placed under the regency of their suzerain Prince Svatopluk I of Great Moravia. After Svatopluk died in 894, an inheritance conflict arose between his sons Mojmír II and Svatopluk II. Spytihněv took advantage of the situation to free himself from Moravian vassalage. According to the Annales Fuldenses, he appeared at the 895 Reichstag in Regensburg and paid homage to the East Frankish king Arnulf of Carinthia.

Spytihněv is known for his alliance with Margrave Luitpold of Bavaria, who in 898 fought against Mojmír II, finally separating Bohemia from the Greater Moravian realm. Designed to protect Bohemia against the ravages of Magyar raiders, this pact also opened Bohemia to East Frankish Carolingian culture and paved the way for the eventual triumph of Roman Catholicism in Czech spiritual affairs. Spytihněv continued the extension of Prague Castle as the administrative center of the Přemyslid duchy.

Spytihněv I, Duke of Bohemia
Born: ~875 Died: 915
Preceded by
Bořivoj I
Duke of Bohemia
c. 894–915
Succeeded by
Vratislaus I