Ellie Wood Keith Genealogy

Mieszko I Dagon, Grand Duke of Poland 966-992

Mieszko I Dagon, Grand Duke of Poland 966-992

Male Abt 935 - 992  (~ 57 years)

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  • Name Mieszko I Dagon 
    Suffix Grand Duke of Poland 966-992 
    Born Abt 935 
    Gender Male 
    History Mieszko was born about 935, the son of the semi-legendary Ziemomyse. He was the first historically known Piast duke of the Polans, who gave their name to the country that would later be called Poland. Mieszko was not the duke\'s actual name but was given to him later - contemporary documents called him Mesco, Misico, Mesico, Msko or similar, with one strange exception - he also appeared as Dagome in document called _Dagome iudex._

    Mieszko\'s first wife\'s name is not recorded. In 965 he married Dobrawa/Dubrawka of Bohemia, daughter of Wratislaw I, duke of Bohemia, and they had a son Boleslaw and daughter Gunhild/Swjatoslawa/Sygryda, both of whom would have progeny. Swajatoslawa (generally accepted by historians as the best approximation of her Slavic name) was the wife (as Queen Sigrid \'the Haughty\') of Eric Segersall \'the Victorious\', king of Sweden and Denmark, and then (as Queen Gunhilda) of Svend I \'Forkbeard\', king in Denmark, Norway and England, and mother of Knud \'den Store\' (Canute), king of England, Denmark and Norway.

    In 980 he married Oda von Haldensleben, daughter of Dietrich von Haldensleben, Margrave von der Nordmark, after abducting her from the monastery of Kalbe. They had three sons of whom only one, also called Mieszko, would have progeny.

    The early career of Mieszko was dominated by fighting with the tribes of Wieletes and Volinians south of the Baltic Sea, and their ally, the Saxon count Wichman. Mieszko was baptised in 966, probably under the influence of his Christian first wife, or perhaps in order to avoid confrontation with the Holy Roman Empire to the west. He built a church dedicated to Saint George at Gniezno, and in 968 he founded the first Polish cathedral in Poznán dedicated to Saint Peter. Those events are also known as \'the Baptism of Poland\'.

    At the time of the reign of Mieszko no single place served as the capital; instead he built several castles around his country, of which the most important were Poznán, Gniezno and Ostrów Lednicki. The latter was a ring-fort some 460 feet in diameter, containing his residence, a fine stone palace which represented the country\'s first monumental architecture.

    He probably had one sister of unknown name, and two brothers: one of them, name unknown, was killed in battle around 964; the second, named Czeibor, helped Mieszko to defeat Count Hodo in the Battle of Cedynia in 972.

    Some historians suggest that Mieszko I had pledged allegiance to Emperor Otto I \'the Great\', to Emperor Otto II and again to Emperor Otto III. However there is much dispute over this point from the Polish side - mainly whether his allegiance represented the whole of Poland, or only part (the disputed fragment is \'usque in Vurta fluvium\' from the medieval chronicle _Thietmari chronicon._ This also stated that Mieszko pledged allegiance to Margrave Gero, but since the chronicle itself is believed to be an abstract of another which does not mention this, it is now generally considered to be a myth. Mieszko\'s reign began around 962 in Greater Poland (Wielkopolska), in Kuyavia (Kujawy) and possibly in eastern Pomerania. In the 960s he probably at least partly conquered western Pomerania, and in the 990s he conquered Silesia and Little Poland (Malopolska).

    Much of his military activity was along the Baltic coast, in territory later called Pomerania. He defeated Margrave Hodo of the Northern March at Cedynia in 972, and reached the mouth of the Oder (Odra) river in 976. The decisive battle, fought in 979, ensured Mieszko\'s position as ruler of the area (or forced him to an allegiance with Emperor Otto II). The following year he celebrated his temporary conquest by dedicating a fortress at Gdansk. Settlements there have existed for millennia, and Pomeranian and Prussian territories overlap at the mouth of the Vistula River.

    In 981 Mieszko I lost land known only as Grody Czerwienskie to Vladimir I, prince of Kiev. In 986, after the death of Emperor Otto II in 983, he pledged allegiance to the Emperor Otto III after initially opposing him, and he helped Otto in wars against the Polabians. Shortly before his death he gifted his state to the pope and received it as a fief of the pope in a document usually called the _Dagome Iudex._ This document indexes the lands of Mieszko, referred to as \'Dagome\' in the document, and his wife, the former nun Oda von Haldensleben and her sons by him. His son Boleslaw I from his previous marriage is not mentioned. On this basis, some historians have concluded that Mieszko\'s real name was Dago or Dagr, and that he was of the royal Daglinger of Norway.

    Mieszko died on 25 May 992, and was succeeded by his son Boleslaw I.  [1
    Died 25 May 992 
    Person ID I1799  Ellie Wood Keith
    Last Modified 3 Mar 2018 

    Father Ziemomyse (Siemomysl), Duke of Polans c. 930-950,   d. Bef 964 
    Relationship putative 
    Relationship putative 
    Family ID F1129  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Dobrawa (Dubrawka), of Bohemia,   d. 977 
    Married 965 
    +1. Boleslaw I Chrobry, King of Poland,   b. Abt 967,   d. 17 Jun 1025  (Age ~ 58 years)
    Last Modified 23 Feb 2018 
    Family ID F1128  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Photos
    Mieszko I, King of Poland
    Mieszko I, King of Poland

  • Sources 
    1. [S64] Genealogics, Leo Van de Pas, http://www.genealogics.org/getperson.php?personID=I00049952&tree=LEO.