Béla I. (Hungary)

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Bust of Béla I, Ópusztaszer Open Air Museum
Béla I., lithograph by Josef Kriehuber after a drawing by Moritz von Schwind , ca.1828

Béla I (around 1015/20; † 1063 ) from the Árpáden family was Duke of the Duchy of Nitra (1048 to 1060) and King of Hungary (1060 to 1063). Béla was a brother of his predecessor Andreas I.


Around 1045, Béla lived in Poland, where he married a sister of Prince Casimir and participated in the consolidation of Kazimir's rule in Poland. 1050 he received as a potential successor to Andrew I. the Principality of Nitra .

In 1057 Andreas I had his son and Béla's nephew Solomon crowned king. Béla saw it as a break in the succession according to the seniority principle and claimed the throne for himself. With the help of Polish troops, he defeated the Hungarian army in two battles, which had been reinforced by German contingents. Since Andreas died on the run, Béla took over the Hungarian crown in 1060 or 1061. But Solomon remained the anti-king and found refuge in the Holy Roman Empire .

Béla now tried to consolidate his rule. To this end, he convened a state parliament to which the two elders from each village belonged. However, this meeting remained largely without influence, because the elders of Béla demanded a return to paganism, which this did not want to recognize. This conflict led to riots, so that Béla had the state parliament forcibly dissolved. This incident suggests that Christianization was already well advanced in the Hungarian aristocratic class, but hardly advanced in the common people. In addition, there was a pagan uprising in the Tisza region at the same time .

Béla died in 1063 when his wooden throne collapsed beneath him. The dynastic battles continued, as his sons Géza and Ladislaus claimed the throne as did the expelled Solomon, who returned to Hungary in 1063 with German help and took over the crown.


Bela was married to a daughter of King Mieskos II of Poland , who is traditionally called Ryksa . A second marriage to Tuta von Formbach is historically controversial .


  • Géza I (* 1044/45, † 1077), King of Hungary (1074–77)
  • Ladislaus I , the Saint (* 1048, † 1095), King of Hungary (1077–95)
  • Jelena the Beautiful († 1095), ∞ King Zvonimir of Croatia
  • one daughter, ∞ Count Lambert von Hontpázmány
  • Euphemia († 1111), ∞ Prince Otto I of Moravia
  • Lambert († 1095), duke in southern Hungary
  • Sophia († 1095), 1. ∞ Ulrich I , Margrave of Carniola, 2. ∞ Magnus , Duke of Saxony


  • János M. Bak: Béla I. In: Biographical Lexicon for the History of Southeast Europe . Volume 1. Munich 1974, p. 173
  • György Györffy: Béla I . In: Lexicon of the Middle Ages (LexMA). Volume 1, Artemis & Winkler, Munich / Zurich 1980, ISBN 3-7608-8901-8 , Sp. 1831 f.

Web links

Commons : Béla I.  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Entry on Bela I in the online edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica , accessed on August 9, 2018.
predecessor Office successor
Andreas I. King of Hungary