Leopold (Bavaria)

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Leopold , the Generous , (* around 1108 ; † October 18, 1141 in Niederaltaich ) was from 1136 to 1141 as Leopold IV. Margrave of Austria and from 1139 to 1141 Duke of Bavaria (as Leopold of Bavaria ).

Leopold IV. On a window of Heiligenkreuz Abbey , ca.1290
Leopold IV during the siege of Regensburg ( Babenberger family tree , around 1490, Klosterneuburg Abbey)


Leopold came from the ruling family of the Margraves of Austria since 976 , who were later called Babenberger and was one of the younger sons of Margrave Leopold III, the saint . Through his mother Agnes von Waiblingen , a daughter of Emperor Heinrich IV , he was related to the house of the Hohenstaufen .

After the death of his father in 1136 he followed him as Leopold IV and Margrave of Austria. Why he was preferred to his older brothers Adalbert “the devotee” (c.1098–1138) and Heinrich “Jasomirgott” is controversial.

One of the first measures of his brief government in 1137 was the exchange treaty between Mautern and Bishop Reginmar von Passau . The bishop received St. Peter's Church , the oldest parish church in the city ​​of Vienna , while the margrave received extensive land around Vienna with the exception of an area outside the city wall, where a large new parish church was to be built - today's St. Stephen 's Cathedral .

King Conrad III. , who was his half-brother through the same mother, planned a reorganization of the political situation in the empire and therefore relied on his Austrian half-brothers in the course of the fight against the Welfs . He enfeoffed Leopold's older brother, Heinrich Jasomirgott, with the Palatinate Countess near the Rhine and Leopold IV. In 1139 with the Duchy of Bavaria , which in 1138 had been revoked from Duke Heinrich the Proud of Welf.

Leopold IV was able to assert himself there quickly and received homage from the Bavarian greats in Regensburg . He had an important support, especially in the bishops, since his brother, the famous historian Otto von Freising, had recently been Bishop of Freising and the Bavarian episcopate under the leadership of the elderly Archbishop of Salzburg Konrad I von Abensberg stood on the side of the king .

After the surprising death of Heinrich the Proud in 1139, Albrecht the Bear had to flee from Saxony again in the spring of 1140 while Welf VI was in Bavaria . , the younger brother of Heinrich the Proud, continued the fight against Duke Leopold IV. As Welf VI. In the spring of 1140 Duke Leopold IV fled from Burg Valley in Upper Bavaria , the Guelph party in Bavaria received a new boost. Also a victory that King Conrad III. towards the end of the year 1140 with personal commitment at Weinsberg against Welf VI. won, brought no decision. Since King Konrad realized that he had not achieved his goal by force of arms, he tried in the coming years to resolve the conflict with the Guelphs through a clever family policy.

When the Duke and Margrave died unexpectedly in the autumn of 1141 after a brief reign on the way to Austria in Niederalteich Monastery, he was buried in the Cistercian monastery Heiligenkreuz Abbey in the Vienna Woods ( Lower Austria ), which had been founded by his father in 1133. His death paved the way for a reorganization of conditions in the empire.

Since Leopold IV left no heirs, his brother Heinrich II. Jasomirgott succeeded him in 1141 as Margrave of Austria and Duke of Bavaria, but before that he had to do without the Palatinate near Rhine and the Salian property from his mother.

Leopold IV had been married to Maria von Böhmen († around 1160) since 1138 . She was a daughter of Duke Soběslav I of Bohemia and Princess Adelheid of Hungary , who was a daughter of Álmos , Prince of Hungary and King of Croatia and the Grand Duchess Predslava of Kiev .

His widow Maria of Bohemia later married the Margrave Hermann III. from Baden .

Individual evidence

  1. a b Heinz Dopsch: 1122–1278. The countries and the empire. P. 128.
  2. Heinz Dopsch: 1122-1278. The countries and the empire. P. 129.


Web links

Commons : Leopold IV. (Bavaria)  - Collection of images, videos and audio files
predecessor Office successor
Heinrich X. Duke of Bavaria 1139–1141
Armoiries Bavière.svg
Heinrich II./XI.