Canute the Great, b. ca. 985/95 in Denmark, d. 12 November 1035 in Shaftesbury, Dorset, England, buried aft. 1035 in Winchester, Hampshire, England
Father: Sven I "Forkbeard" King of Denmark, b. ca. 960 in Denmark, d. 3 February 1014 in Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, England, He became King of Denmark, 986 in Denmark, He became king of England, 25 December 1013 in England, buried aft. 3 February 1014 in Roskilde Cathedral, Denmark
Mother: Gunhilda (Sigrid "the Haughty"), Queen of Svithjod, b. ca. 965 in Poznan, Poznan, Poland, d. aft. 2 February 1014
Spouse: Aelgifu of Northampton, b. ca. 992, d. aft. 1035
Father: Aelfhelm, Ealdorman of Northampton
Aelgifu married Canute some time during the Danish invasion of England. She went to Denmark with their son Sveyn to help him rule. They were both hated by the Danes because of her harsh rule and high taxation. They were driven out of Denmark by Erik the Victorious. Sveyn died before returning to England, but Aelgifu returned and helped her son Harold become king.
Aelgifu (or Elgifu or Elfgifu) was also the name of the wives of kings Edgar "the Peaceable" and Ethelred. The name means "gift of the elves".
Married ca. 1016.
Spouse: Emma of Normandy, b. ca. 988, m. Ethelred II "the Unready" King of England, 1002, d. 6 March 1052
Father: Richard I "The Fearless", Duke of Normandy, b. 28 August 933 in Normandy, France, d. 996 in Rouen, France
Mother: Gunnora (Gunhilda) of Denmark, b. ca. 936, d. 1031
It is the marriage of Emma to Ethelred that William the Conqueror claimed gave him the right to the English throne. Emma was queen of England twice; by her marriage to Ethelred, and later by her marriage to Canute.
Sven I "Forkbeard" King of Denmark, b. ca. 960 in Denmark, d. 3 February 1014 in Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, England, He became King of Denmark, 986 in Denmark, He became king of England, 25 December 1013 in England, buried aft. 3 February 1014 in Roskilde Cathedral, Denmark
Father: Harald I Bluetooth, King of Denmark, b. 910, d. 1 November 986, He became King of Denmark, 958 in Denmark, He became King of Norway, ca. 970 in Norway, buried aft. 986 in Roskilde Cathedral, Denmark
Mother: Gunhild Olafsdotter, b. 923 in Denmark
According to Adam of Bremen, Sven was driven out of Denmark by Erik the Victorious just before Erik's death in 994 or 995.
Following the death of Olaf I, King of Norway, in the Battle of Svoldr, Sven became ruler over part of Norway, with Eirik Hakonsson as his vassel. Sven was probably behind the raids on England from 1003 until 1012 following the St. Brice's Day Massacre of England's Danish inhabitants in November 1002. In 1013 he launched a full invasion.
Northumbria quickly bowed to him, followed by Lindsay and the Five Boroughs. Sven fought his way through England and soon approached London. It is said the the Londoners destroyed the bridges that crossed the Thames (London Bridge is falling down). Sven's army suffered heavy losses and was foced to withdraw. But Sven was accepted as ruler of England and, after Ethelred the Unready fled to Normandy, was crowned King on Christmas Day.
Sven's nickname, wich was probably used in his lifetime, refers to a long, pitchfork-like moustache, not to a full beard. Such a moustache was the fashion at the time, particularly in England.
Spouse: Gunhilda (Sigrid "the Haughty"), Queen of Svithjod, b. ca. 965 in Poznan, Poznan, Poland, m. Erik VIII "the Victorious" Bjornsson, ca. 973, div. bef. 993, d. aft. 2 February 1014
Father: Mieszko I, Prince of the Polanians, b. 935 in Poznan, Poznan, Poland, d. 25 May 992 in Poznan, Poznan, Poland, buried aft. 25 May 992 in Cathedral of St. Peter and St. Paul, Poznan, Poland
Mother: Dubravka the Czech, b. ca. 925 in Praha, Praha, Czechoslovakia, d. 977
Her Polish name was Sygryda Swietoslawa; we have used the Norse variation since it is the one most likely to be encountered. She is also believed to be the same person as Gunhilda, who is often listed as the wife of Sven I "Forkbeard". Also, her father is sometimes listed as Skoglar Toste, or the mythical "Burislav". Burislav is considered to be a combination of Miezko I and Boleslaw of Poland.
After she divorced from Erik, she was given Gotaland as a fife. Olaf Trygvasson proposed to her, but demanded that she convert to Christianity. This proposal insulted her, and she began to actively orchestrate Olaf's downfall by allying Sweden and Denmark against Norway. She was successful when Olaf fell in the Battle of Swold in 1000. She also had Harald Grenske burned to death to discourage other petty kings from proposing to her, thus earning the nickname "haughty".
Married 998 in Denmark.
Harald I Bluetooth, King of Denmark, b. 910, d. 1 November 986, He became King of Denmark, 958 in Denmark, He became King of Norway, ca. 970 in Norway, buried aft. 986 in Roskilde Cathedral, Denmark
Father: Gorm "the Old", King of Denmark, b. ca. 850 in Denmark, d. 958 in Denmark
Mother: Thrye Danebold, b. ca. 870
He was known as Harald Blätand (blä meaning "dark skinned" and tan maning "great man"). After Harald converted to Christianity around 965, he had the unfinished "Jellinge Mounds" begun by his pagan father turned into Christian monuments to his parents. An inscription on one reads: Haraltr kunukr bath kaurua thausi aft kurm fathur sin auk aft thaurui muthur sina, sa Haraltr ias sar uan tanmaurk ala auk nuruiak auk tani karthi kristna. Which is translated from Old Norse as: King Harald raised this monument to the memory of Gorm his father and Thyre his mother. Harald conquered all of Denmark and Norway and made the Danes Christian.
Harald built the bridge near Ravning and several "ring" castles in strategic locations around Denmark.
Spouse: Gunhild Olafsdotter, b. 923 in Denmark
Father: Olof "Mitkg" Bjornsson, b. 885 in Sweden, d. bef. 983
Mother: Ingeberg Thrandsdotter, b. 886 in Uppsala, Sweden
Married ca. 950.
Gorm "the Old", King of Denmark, b. ca. 850 in Denmark, m. Assur Tote of Halogoland, ca. 900, d. 958 in Denmark
Father: Hardicanute I Sigurdsson, King of Denmark, b. ca. 820, d. ca. 948 in Denmark, Became king of Sweden and Denmark, ca. 916 in Denmark
He was called Gorm den Gamle, and a variation of Gorm, Guthrum. It is by Guthrum he is called in the stories of his battles with Alfred the Great, King of England. He was called "the Old" because there was a later Gorm called "the Younger".
Legend has it that Gorm and Thyre slept with a sword between them during their first years of marriage because they were suspecious of the other's true intentions.
Gorm was on the verge of defeating Wessex but was decisively defeated by Alfred the Great at the Battle of Edington. Gorm was forced to sign the Treaty of Wedmore in which he accepted Christianity and consented to the division of England into two kingdoms: Alfred's Wessex and his own Danelaw. It may be at that time that he married Thyre Danebold, the daughter of Alfred's brother, Aethelred (Ethelred).
It is believed that his remains have been found at the site of the first Christian church at Jellinge. His son, Harald, supposedly moved his body from its original resting place to the church at Jellinge, but left the original mound as a memorial to his father.
Spouse: Thrye Danebold, b. ca. 870
Father: Aethelred I, King of England, b. 837 in Wessex, England, d. 23 April 871 in Merton, England, He became King of England, 865 in Kingston-upon-Thames, Surrey, England, cause of death was the Battle of Merton, buried aft. 23 April 871 in Wimborne, Dorset, England
Other sources list Thyre's father as Harold, Jarl of Jutland, or Harald of Denmark. Most sources say her father is Aethelred, or Ethelred, of England. The dates seem to work better with Aethelred, and it would make sense for Thyre to be given to Gorm to wife by Alfred the Great, her uncle, as a kind of peace treaty.
Married ca. 879.
Hardicanute I Sigurdsson, King of Denmark, b. ca. 820, d. ca. 948 in Denmark, Became king of Sweden and Denmark, ca. 916 in Denmark
Father: Sweyn Sigurdsson, b. ca. 800
He was also known as Harde-Knud Canute I.
Hardicanute may have been born in Norway or the Danelaw (Danish territories in East Anglia, England). He arrived in Denmark around 916 and deposed the young king Sigtrygg Gnupasson. In around 934, Hardicanute was forced to pay tribute to the German ruler Heinrich I (Henry I the Fowler).
Sweyn Sigurdsson, b. ca. 800
Father: Sigurd "Snake Eye" Ragnarsson, d. 803, Became king of Denmark, 794
Mother: Heluna (Bleja), Princess of England
Aethelred I, King of England, b. 837 in Wessex, England, d. 23 April 871 in Merton, England, He became King of England, 865 in Kingston-upon-Thames, Surrey, England, cause of death was the Battle of Merton, buried aft. 23 April 871 in Wimborne, Dorset, England
Father: Aethelvulf, King of England, b. 795 in Aachen, Rhineland, Germany, d. 13 January 858, He was crowned King of England, 4 February 839 in Kingston-upon-Thames, Surrey, England, buried aft. 13 January 858 in Steyning, England, buried aft. 860 in Winchester Cathedral, London, England
Mother: Osburga, d. 855
Aethelred (or Ethelred) was not able to control the Danish raids. He defeated the Danish army at the Battle of Reading on January 4, 871, but was killed in the Battle of Merton just a few months later. He was succeeded by his brother, Alfred.
Married ca. 857.
Olof "Mitkg" Bjornsson, b. 885 in Sweden, d. bef. 983
Father: Bjorn "the Old" Eriksson, b. ca. 867 in Uppsala, Sweden, d. 923
Spouse: Ingeberg Thrandsdotter, b. 886 in Uppsala, Sweden
Father: Thrand, Jarl of Sula
Married ca. 902.
Thrand, Jarl of Sula