Monday, June 28, 2010

Erik II Emune, -- 1137 -- ~ Malmfred -- 1130 --

Dansk Biografisk Lexicon
Carl Fr. Bricka
Project Runeberg

Erik Emune, --1137, king, illegal son of Erik
I Ejegod. E. joined during his father's brother
king Niels' government his brother Knud Lavard,
who had given him some islands to govern. When
Knud was murdered 7. January 1131,E. wasn't in
the country, but he came quickly demanding
revenge; archbishop Asser reached a settlement
though on the condition that Magnus Nielsen
left Denmark. This was however not respected,
which made E. and his halfbrother Harald Kesja
urge the people to do a revolt. E. was let down
by king Lothar of Germany, while Niels bought
Lothar's friendship, and E. had to endure a tough
siege in Schleswig in the winter 1131-32, but he
got away in spring and succeeded in beating Magnus
at Sejerø. Soon after he suffered a defeat at
Onsild Bridge and was saved only by the braveness
of Bjørn Ironside(Harald Kesja's son) and Åge
Christiernsen. Harald Kesja had however joined
king Niels, and E. fought against both him and the
king, who won a victory at Værebro. At that time E.
had married Sigurd Jorsalfarer's repudiated wife
Malmfred, a daughter of the Russian Grand Prince
Mstislaw or Harald, and he hoped for assistance
from Norway, but king Magnus let him down. After
archbishop Asser had joined E., Niels tried to
start a main battle, but at Fodevig on Whit Monday
(4 June) 1134 E. was the victor, especially with
the assistance from his cavalry. 3 weeks later
king Niels was killed by the Gildebrødrene
(Brothers of the guild, Knud Lavard's friends)
in Schleswig (25 June 1134), and Erik was paid
tribute as king. The by-name Harefoot, which
his earlier roaming had given him, was replaced
after the victory by the name Emune, which meant
"the forever memorable". When Harald Kesja the
next year (1135) let himself proclaim king at
Urnehoved Thing, E. captured both him and his
many sons except one and let them kill.Shortly
after E. brought his cavalry across the sea to
Rügen and forced the Wends to submission and
christening, but the fleet had hardly left the
island, before they took up their old paganism.
King Magnus persuaded E. to an expedition to
Norway, but he met a serious resistance and
had to withdraw. When E. 18. Sept. 1137 held a
thing at Ribe or Urnehoved, a landlord, Sorte
Plov, stepped forward in front of the king. He
wanted revenge for having suffered an unjustice,
and when he noticed that the king did not wear
a coat of mail, he thrusted his spear through
him. E. was buried in Ribe Cathedral.

E. owned several qualities which also
characterized Knud Lavard, like courage,
enterprise and stamina, and he had, while he was
with his halfbrother, whose memory he honoured,
trained himself to be a great warrior. On the
other hand he was a different person, and his
character was blemished by thoughtless desire
of conquest,harshness and cruelty. He had no
children by Malmfred who survived him; before
his marriage he had a son Svend (Grathe) with
a mistress Thunna.

Suhm, Hist. af Danmark V.
Dahlmann, Gesch. von Dannemark.
Ræder, Danmark under Svend Estridsen og hans Sønner.
H. Olrik, Knud Lavards Liv og Gærning.

Johannes C. H. R. Steenstrup.

Malmfred, --1130--, queen, was a daughter of
the Russian prince Mstislav or Harald and
Christine, a daughter of the Swedish king Inge.
M.s maternal aunt Margrethe Fredkulla, king
Niels' wife, seems to have worked for relations
between the Nordic principalities, it might
therefore be she, who arranged a marriage
between M. and the Norwegian king Sigurd
Jorsalfar ab. 1120, like she had arranged a
marriage between M.'s sister Ingeborg and Knud
Lavard. Sigurd and M. had a daughter Christine,
who was later married to Erling Skakke. In
his last years Sigurd, who was mentally sick,
repudiated M. and took another wife. M. was
then married to her sister's brother-in-law
Erik Emune ab. 1132 and shared his changing fate
during the battles with king Niels and Magnus,
she followed him on his flight to Norway in 1133.
In 1134 she became queen at Erik's accession
to the throne, but nothing is known of her later

Munch, Det norske Folks Hist. II.
Olrik, Knud Lavard.

Johannes C. H. R. Steenstrup.

Dansk Biografisk Lexicon
Carl Fr. Bricka
Project Runeberg
translation grethe bachmann  ©copyright