Sven Gabelbart

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Sven Gabelbart

Sven I. "Gabelbart" ( Danish Svend Tveskæg ; sometimes also Sven Haraldsson ; * around 965 ; † February 3, 1014 in Gainsborough ) was King of Denmark from 986 and was declared King of England in 1013 .


Sven Gabelbart having a funeral beer ( Sumbel ) for his father Harald (national romantic history picture by Lorenz Frølich , 1883–1886)

Sven I. is said to have driven his baptized father Harald I. Blue Tooth from the throne of Denmark in an uprising in 986 because Harald did not want to consider Sven in the succession to the throne. Given the tendentious reports in the sources, this is uncertain. Harald died after a stay of unknown duration in exile in 987 in Jomsburg . After a brief Swedish invasion in 991 under King Erik Segersäll , as a result of which he was probably only released after paying a ransom, Sven came back to the Danish throne. He was a Christian and built a large cathedral in Roskilde, but did not recognize the suzerainty of the Archbishop of Hamburg. In 994 he led a Viking attack on London with Olav Tryggvason . He devastated large parts of south-east England and received a Danegeld of 16,000 pounds of silver to end his looting the following year . Norway had become independent again after the battle of Hjørungavåg in 986 and Olav Tryggvason became king there. He took part in the battle off the island of Svold on September 9, 1000 on the Wendish side against Denmark and died in this battle. Sven I. now ruled over Norway by means of two Jarles .

After participating in some raids led by Norway in the years 994-995, Sven carried out some large-scale invasions against England (1003-1005, 1006-1007, 1009-1012 and 1013) in which he collected the Danegeld. Previously, the English king Æthelred II had ordered the St. Brice's Day massacre , in which all Danish residents of England were to be killed on November 13, 1002, including Gabelbart's sister Gunhilde. In 1013, Gabelbart succeeded in conquering England, driving Æthelred II to Normandy . On December 25, 1013 he was declared King of England and was the actual ruler of England until his death 40 days later.

Sven Forkbeard died on February 3, 1014 Gainsborough in the county of Lincolnshire , which he had made his capital, shortly before his planned coronation. With a reign of 40 days, Sven Gabelbart was the English king with the shortest reign. His body was transferred to Denmark and buried in Roskilde Cathedral. According to the biography of a Flemish monk, King Canute's deeds or an award book for Queen Emma , he was "buried in the church that this king had performed in honor of the Trinity , in the tomb he had set up." That would then be in Lund The oldest church was built by Sven from wood as the Holy Trinity Church. During the excavations, a grave-shaped pit was found under the floor of this church. Only the builders of a church used to be buried here, so it is entirely possible that he was buried there first.

His eldest son, Harald II , was his successor as King of Denmark . After his death in 1018, his second son Knut the Great ruled over a North Sea region that included Denmark and Schleswig as well as England and Norway.

Wives and children

After Steenstrup he was married first to Gunhild von Polen , a daughter of the Abodritic velvet ruler Mistislaw , then to Sigrid Storråda , Sigrid the proud . Another source mentions Świętosława of Poland as a wife, she may have been identical to Gunhild.

Children :

  1. Richard II , Duke of Normandy , † 1027, cast out ( Rollonids )
  2. Ulf Jarl , † 1026 - the parents of Sven Estridsson ( Haus Estridsson )
  • Santslaue
  • another daughter

See also


  • Thietmar von Merseburg : Chronik (= selected sources on German history of the Middle Ages. Freiherr-vom-Stein-Gedächtnisausgabe. Volume 9). Retransmitted and explained by Werner Trillmich , Darmstadt 1957; Text VII. 36.


Web links

Commons : Sven Gabelbart  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. M. Kaufhold: Europe's north in the Middle Ages: The integration of Scandinavia into Christian Europe. P. 64.
  2. Ole Feldbæk, p. 23.
  3. Sweyn Forkbeard: England's forgotten Viking king on BBC News , December 25, 2013, accessed December 27, 2013.
  4. Fredrik Svanberg: Vikingatiden i Skane. Lund 2000, p. 89.
  5. ^ Johannes CHR Steenstrup: Gunhild . In: Carl Frederik Bricka (Ed.): Dansk biografisk Lexikon. Tillige omfattende Norge for Tidsrummet 1537-1814. 1st edition. tape 6 : Gerson-H. Hansen . Gyldendalske Boghandels Forlag, Copenhagen 1892, p. 304 (Danish, - first wife of Sven Gabelbart).
  6. ^ Johannes CHR Steenstrup: Svend Tveskjæg . In: Carl Frederik Bricka (Ed.): Dansk biografisk Lexikon. Tillige omfattende Norge for Tidsrummet 1537-1814. 1st edition. tape 17 : Svend Tveskjæg – Tøxen . Gyldendalske Boghandels Forlag, Copenhagen 1903, p. 1–3 (Danish, - Sigrid Storråda, second wife of Sven Gabelbart).
predecessor Office successor
Harald Blue Tooth King of Denmark
Harald II
Harald Blue Tooth King of Norway
Olav I.
Olav I. King of Norway
Olav II.
Æthelred King of England