Ottokar I. Přemysl

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Depiction of Ottokar I in the St. George's Basilica in Prague
D F.II. 171 , the recognition of hereditary royal dignity
Tumba of Ottokar I in St. Vitus Cathedral in Prague

Ottokar I. Přemysl (* around 1155 in Königstädtel (?); † December 15, 1230 ), son of Vladislav II. And Judith of Thuringia , was King of Bohemia from the Přemyslid dynasty . He enforced the elevation of his country to a hereditary kingdom.


Ottokar I fought for a long time with various pretenders for power. First he was appointed Margrave of Moravia by his older brother Friedrich in 1179 and briefly held the dignity of Bohemia in 1192/1193. When Ottokar changed sides in the dispute between the Staufers and Guelphs, he was defeated by Heinrich VI in 1194 . deposed and had to his former ally Heinrich Břetislav III. , Bishop of Prague , who had been installed as Duke of Bohemia by the king.

On June 22, 1197, his brother Vladislav Heinrich was made duke. Shortly afterwards, Ottokar made an agreement with him, according to which Vladislav received the margraviate of Moravia as a Bohemian fiefdom, and Ottokar himself the Bohemian throne. This meant that the two principalities were separated again for a short time. In September 1198, Ottokar von Philipp von Schwaben acquired the royal dignity as a reward for his followers (agreement on September 8th in Mainz ) and was crowned a few days later in Boppard . For the first time in the history of Bohemia, it was not a personal, but a hereditary crown.

In 1203, Ottokar was deposed by Philip because he fled the party and expelled his wife Adelheid von Meißen , but in return he received recognition of his rule from Innocent III. and Otto von Braunschweig ; In 1204 he was reconciled with Philip again. With Otto, whom he had initially recognized, he fell apart again and in 1212 joined Friedrich II , who finally recognized the Bohemian hereditary kingship in the Golden Sicilian Bull in 1212 and described Ottokar as the “most noble imperial prince”.

In 1216 he arranged his succession by electing his son Wenceslaus as king. In addition, around 1200 the Moravian branch line of the Přemyslids was finally extinguished, so that the two parts of the empire Bohemia and Moravia formed a unit from that point on. All of the following Bohemian kings also carried the Moravian margrave title, which was usually given to them as heir to the throne.

During the reign of Ottokar and his son Wenceslaus, there were far-reaching social changes in Bohemia. Areas not previously populated were increasingly colonized. In addition to the Bohemian residents, Germans also increasingly immigrated and founded new settlements and cities. This not only led to an increase in the population, but also to the intensification of agriculture and the introduction of new cultivation methods. The ordinances, laws and ownership structures also had to be redefined or changed. The surpluses from agriculture, but also from the flourishing handicrafts, had to be sold. New trade routes and relationships emerged, and money management had to be adjusted. The increasing demand for precious metals and metals in general led to the growing importance of mining.

The structure of the settlements and cities changed, a new class of citizens was added. New layers of administrators emerged who were oriented towards the nobility, alongside craftsmen, traders and entrepreneurs. The landowners, in particular, became increasingly important. The successful came into the sphere of power, the less successful gathered around the successful, the nobility, which was mostly financed from the proceeds of its fiefdoms. An important symbol of the recognition of the Bohemian rulers was the right to inherit the title of king. In addition to acquiring the hereditary royal crown, Ottokar I also enforced the primogeniture , which ended the centuries-long destabilization of Bohemia through the seniority principle . There were also changes in the Church. Their independence and independent internal administration was recognized, and their interference in political decisions often had to be accepted.


Ottokar was married twice, first to Adelheid von Meißen , with whom he had three or four children, depending on the source, and from 1198 to Konstanze von Ungarn , with whom he fathered eight or nine children depending on the source.

1. Marriage (1178) with Adelheid von Meißen :

2nd marriage (1198) Constance of Hungary :

  • Vratislav (around 1200–?)
  • Judith, also Jutta , Judita Přemyslovna , (? –1230) ∞ (1213) with Bernhard von Spanheim
  • Anna of Bohemia , also Anna Lehnická , (1204–1265) ∞ Henry II , Duke of Silesia and Princeps of Poland
  • Wenceslas I , also Václav I (1205–1253)
  • Vladislav II, Margrave of Moravia (1207–1227)
  • Přemysl , Margrave of Moravia (1209–1239)
  • Blaschena, also Wilhelmina , Blažena , Vilemína Česká or Guglielma (1210–1281)
  • Agnes of Bohemia (1211-1282)


Web links

Commons : Ottokar I. Přemysl  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files
predecessor Office successor
Wenceslas II Duke of Bohemia
Heinrich Břetislav III.
Vladislav Heinrich King of Bohemia
Wenceslaus I.