Emperor Otto I Saxony HOLY ROMAN EMPIRE
(Abt 851-912)
(Abt 856-Abt 903)
Count Theodoric RINGLEHEIM
(Abt 853-)
Countess Ludmilla Ragnhildis RINGLEHEIM
(Abt 858-)
King Henry GERMANY, I
(Abt 875-936)
Queen Saint Matilda Westphalia GERMANY
(Abt 878-968)
Emperor Otto I Germany HOLY ROMAN EMPIRE


Family Links

1. Queen Edith England GERMANY

2. Empress Saint Adelaide Burgundy GERMANY

Emperor Otto I Germany HOLY ROMAN EMPIRE

  • Born: 23 Nov 912, , Saxony, Germany
  • Married (1): 928-930
  • Married (2): Dec 951, , Lombardy, Italy
  • Died: 7 May 973, Memleben, Saxony, Germany
  • Buried: Cathedral, Magdeburg, Germany

   Other names for Otto were GERMANY Emperor, HOLY ROMAN EMPIRE Emperor, "The Great", Otho and GERMANY King.

   Ancestral File Number: 8HR7-TX. User ID: 4840895692.

   General Notes:

"The Great", King of GERMANY Reigned 936-973, Emperor of GERMANY, Emperor
of HOLY ROMAN EMPIRE Reigned 962-973.

Kings and Queens of Great Britain, Genealogical Chart, Anne Taute and Romilly Squire, Taute, 1990: "Edith Daughter of Edward King of England and Aelflaed, Mar Otto I The Great German Emperor Died 973."

Wall Chart of World History, Edward Hull, 1988, Studio Editions, Germany Saxon Dynasty 936: "Otho the Great, King of Germany 936-973, King of Italy 961-973, Son of Henry I, Makes Rome his Capital..."

The New Columbia Encyclopedia, 1975, p2030, Otto I The Great: "Born 912, Died 973, Holy Roman Emperor (962-973) and German King (936-973), son and successor of Henry I of Germany. He is often regarded as the founder of the Holy Roman Empire.Boldly developing the policies that his father had begun, Otto brought the Middle Kingdom of the Carolingian Lothair I, including Italy, Burgundy, and Lotharingia, under German influence and broke the independence of the duchies. The rebellionsof Otto's brother, Henry, and of Duke Eberhard of Franconia were ended by the battle of Andernach (939) and Henry's submission (941). King Louis IV of France, hoping to gain Lotharingia, had assisted the rebels, and Otto campaigned against him(940) with Hugh the Great; in 942, however, Otto and Louis reached an agreement, and Otto helped Louis to defeat Hugh (950). In 951, Otto invaded Italy, taking advantage of an appeal from the widowed Italian queen, Adelaide, who was about to be forced into a marriage with the son of Berengar II. Defeating Berengar, Otto assumed the title King of the Lombards, married Adelaide, and returned to Germany, where Berengar eventually paid him homage. In Germany another revolt was brewing.Rivalry and jealousy among the dukes, particularly against Otto's brother, Henry, whom he had made Duke of Bavaria in 947, resulted in a rebellion in 953 led by Conrad the Red and Otto's son Duke Ludolf of Swabia. New attacks by the Magyars ended the rebellion and forced the dukes to form a united front against the invaders, who were defeated (955) in the Battle of Lechfeld. Otto had already begun to counter the ducal power by creating the `Ottonian System,' entailing close alliancebetween the crown and the higher prelates. An important exponent of the alliance was his brother and chief adviser, St Bruno, Archbishop of Cologne, whom Otto mad Duke of Lotharingia. Meanwhile, in Italy, Berengar II resumed his aggression. Pope John XII appealed to Otto, who entered Rome and was crowned Emperor early in 962, reviving the imperial title of the Carolingians and legitimizing the German Kings' claim to the Middle Kingdom; Otto thus linked the destinies of Italy and Germany. John soon found the Emperor too powerful and, while Otto was campaigning against Berengar, secretly negotiated with Otto's enemies. Otto hastened back to Rome (963), deposed John, and installed a new Pope, Leo VIII. The Romans, seeing allindependence lost, rose in 964 and restored John, but John died the same year and Otto reinstated Leo. Otto's campaign (966-972) to gain control over S Italy was unsuccessful, but a minor diplomatic triumph was scored in 972 when Emperor JohnI of Byzantium gave a Greek princess in marriage to Otto's son and successor, Otto II."

Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1981, Micropaedia, Vol VII, p625, Otto I the Great Emperor: "Born 23 Nov 912, Died 7 May 973 Memleben Germany, German King and Holy Roman Emperor, consolidated the German Reich by his suppression of rebellious vassals and his decisive victory over the Magyars. His use of the church as a stabilizing influence created a secure empire and stimulated a cultural renaissance. "Beleaguered by internal problems with treacherous relatives, he crushed insurrections and twice forgave his younger brother Henry for plotting against him (939 and 941). He directed the foundation of the monastery in Magdeburg (937) and bishoprics in Denmark (968) to strengthen his rule. After quelling the rebellion of his son Liudolf he ended the Magyar threat at the Battle of the Lechfeld, near Augsburg (955). He was crowned Holy Roman Emperor by Pope John XII (2 Feb 962), who by treaty accorded him privileges in church affairs. Having replaced John XII with Pope Leo VIII (Dec 963), he solidified relations with the Eastern Empire by marrying his son Otto II to the Byzantine princess Theophano (972).

EncyclopaediaBritannica, 1981, Macropaedia, Vol XIII, p768, Otto I the Great Emperor: "Otto was born on November 23, 912, the son of the future King Henry I, of the Liudolfing, or Saxon, Dynasty, and his second wife, Matilda...He married Edith, daughter ofthe English King Edward the Elder, in 930; she ob- tained as her dowry the flourishing town of Magdeburg. Nominated by Henry as his successor, Otto was elected king by the German dukes at Aachen on 7 Aug 936 a month after Henry's death, and crowned by the archbishops of Mainz and Cologne...
"When Henry I had controlled his vassal dukes only with difficulty, the new king firmly asserted his suzerainty over them...In 939, Otto's younger brother henry revolted...supported by the French King Louis IV. Otto was again victorious: Eberhard of Franconia fell in battle, Giselbert of of Lotharingia was drowned in flight, and Henry submitted to his brother. Nevertheless, in 941 Henry joined a conspiracy to murder the King. Thiswas discovered in time; and, whereas the other conspirators were punished, Henry was again forgiven. Thenceforward he remained faithful to his brother and, in 947, was given the dukedom of Bavaria. The other German dukedoms were likewise bestowed on relatives of Otto...
"Despite these internal difficulties, Otto found time to strengthen and extend the frontiers of the kingdom...Otto's first campaign in Bohemia was, however, a failure, and it was not until 950 that the Bohemian Prince Boleslav I was forced to submit and to pay tribute...
"...When the Burgundian Princess Adelaide, the widowed Queen of Italy whom the Margrave Berengar of Ivrea had taken prisoner, appealed to him for help, Otto marched into Italy in951, assumed the title of King of the Lombards, and married Adelaide himself, his first wife having died in 946...
"...Otto had to break off his first Italian campaign because of a revolt in Germany, where Liudolf, his son by Edith, had risen against him with the aid of several magnates...the position of the rebels began to deteriorate when the Magyars invaded Germany in 954, for the rebels could now be accused of complicity with the enemies of the Reich. After prolonged fighting, Liudolf had to submit in 955. This made it possible for Otto to defeat the Magyars decisively in the Battle of the Lechfeld, near Augsburg, in August 955; they never invaded Germany again...
"In May 961 Otto procured the election and coronation of the six-year-old Otto II, his elder son by Adelaide, as German King. Then he went for a second time to Italy on the appeal of Pope John XII, who was hard pressed by Berengar of Ivrea. Arriving in Rome on February 2, 962, Otto was crowned emperor, and 11 days later a treaty known as the `Priviegium Ottonianum', was concluded, to regulate relations between emperor and pope...
"...In 966 Otto marched for a third time to Italy, where he stayed to 972. He subdued Rome and even advanced into the Byzantine south of Italy. Prolonged negotiations with Byzantium resulted in the marriage of Otto II to the Byzantine Princess Theophano, in 972. Having returned to Germany, the Emperor held a great assembly of his courtat Quedlinburg on 23 Mar 973. He died in Memleben on 7 May 973, and was buried in Magdeburg at the side of his first wife.
"Otto I's achievement rests mainly on his consolidation of the Reich. He deliberately made use of the bishops to strengthen his rule and thus created that `Ottonian church system of the Reich' that was to provide a stable and long-lasting framework for Germany. By his victorious campaigns, he gave Germany peace and security from foreign attack; and the pre-eminent position that he won as ruler gave him a sort of hegemony in Europe. His Italian policy and the acquisition of the imperial crown constituted a link with the old Carolingian tradition and was to prove a great responsibility for the German people in the future. All areas under Otto's rule prospered, and the resultant flowering of culture has been called the Ottonian renaissance."

The Story of Civilization, Will Durant, Vol IV, The Age of Faith, Bk IV, The Dark Ages, Ch XX, The Rise of the North, Sec VI, Germany, p511: "Otto I the Great (936-973) was the Charlemagne of Germany. He was twenty-four at his accession, but was already a king in bearing and ability. Sensing the value of ceremony and symbolism, he persuaded the dukes of Lorraine, Franconia, Swabia, and Bavaria to act as his attendants in his solemn coronation at Aachen by Archbishop Hildebert. Later the dukes rebelled against his growing power, and induced his younger brother Henry to join in aplot to depose him; Otto discovered and suppressed the conspiracy, and forgave Henry, who conspired again and was again forgiven. The subtle King gave new duchies to his friends and relatives, and gradually subordinated the dukes; later monarchs would not inherit his resolution and skill, and much of medieval Germany was consumed in conflicts between feudalism and royalty. In this contest the German prelates sided with the King, and became his administrative aides and counselors, sometimes his generals. The King appointed bishops and archbishops as he named other officials of the government; and the German Church became a national institution, only loosely attached to the papacy. Using Christianity as a unifying force, Otto fused the German tribes into a powerful state.
"On the urging of his bishops, Otto attacked the Wends, and sought to convert them to Christianity by the sword. He compelled the king of Denmark and the dukes of Poland and Bohemia to accept him as their feudal suzerain. Aspir-ing to the throne of the Holy Roman Empire, he welcomed the invitation of Ade- laide, the pretty widow of King Lothaire of Italy, to rescue her from the indignities to which she had been subjected by the new King Berengar II. Otto combined politics deftly with romance: he invaded Italy, married Adelaide, and allowed Berengar to retain his kingdom only as a fief of the German crown (951). The Roman aristocracy refused to acknowledge a German as emperor and therefore as master of Italy; now began a contest that would last for three centuries. The rebellion of his son Ludolf and his son-in-law Conrad called Otto back to Germany, lest in trying to become emperor he should cease to be king.When the Magyars again invaded Germany (954), Ludolf and Conrad welcomed them, and supplied them with guides. Otto put down the rebellion, forgave Ludolf, reorganized his army, and so decisively defeated the Magyars at the Lechfeld, near Augsburg (955), that Germany won a long period of security and peace. Otto now devoted hemself to internal affairs- restored order, suppressed crime, and for a time created a united Germany, the most porsperous state of its time.
"Imperial opportunity returned when Pope John XII appealed for his aid against Berengar (959). Otto invaded Italy with a strong force, entered Rome peaceably, and was crowned Roman Emperor of the West by Joh XII in 962. The Pope, regretting this action, complained that Otto had not fulfilled a promise to restore the Ravenna exarchate to the papacy. Otto took the extreme step of marching into Rome, summoning a synod of Italian bishops, and persuading it to depose John and make a layman Pope as LeoVIII (963). The papal territory was now confined to the duchy of Rome and the Sabine region; the rest of central and northern Italy was absorbed into a Holy Roman Empire that became an appanage of the German crown. From these events German kings would conclude that Italy was part of their inheritance; and the popes would conclude that no man could become Roman emperor of the West except by papal coronation.
"Otto, nearing death, forestalled disorder by having his son Otto II crowned coemperor by Pope John XIII (967); and he secured as his son's wife Theophano, daughter of Romanus II the Byzantine Emperor (972); Charlemagne's dream of a marital union of the two empires was transiently made real. Then, old in deeds butstill only sixty years of age, Otto passed away (973), and all Germany mourned him as its greatest king..."

Ancestral File Ver 4.11 8HR7-TX.

   Marriage Information:

Otto married Queen Edith England GERMANY, daughter of King Edward Wessex ENGLAND, I and Queen Aelflaed Wessex ENGLAND, in 928-930. (Queen Edith England GERMANY was born about 910 in , Wessex, England, died on 21 Jan 946-947 in , , Germany and was buried in Cathedral, Magdeburg, Germany.)

   Marriage Information:

Otto also married Empress Saint Adelaide Burgundy GERMANY, daughter of King Rudolph BURGUNDY, II and Queen Bertha Von Swabia BURGUNDY, in Dec 951 in , Lombardy, Italy. (Empress Saint Adelaide Burgundy GERMANY was born about 931 in , Burgundy, France and died on 16 Dec 1000 in Selz, Alsace, France.)

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