Southern Anthology

Families on the Frontiers of the Old South

Saint Mathilde de Ringelheim, Queen of Germany, Lay Abbess of Nivelles

Saint Mathilde de Ringelheim, Queen of Germany, Lay Abbess of Nivelles[1, 2]

Female Abt 895 - 968  (~ 73 years)

Personal Information    |    Media    |    Sources    |    Event Map    |    All    |    PDF

  • Name Mathilde de Ringelheim 
    Saint Matilda
    Saint Matilda
    Title Saint 
    Suffix Queen of Germany, Lay Abbess of Nivelles 
    Nickname Matilda 
    Born Abt 895  Engern, Westphalia, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Female 
    Died 14 Mar 968  Quedlinburg, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Buried Quedlinburg Abbey, Quedlinburg, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Quedlinburg Abbey
    Quedlinburg Abbey
    Quedlinburg, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany
    Notes 
    • Queen of Germany, wife of King Henry I (The Fowler), b. at the Villa of Engern in Westphalia, about 895; d. at Quedlinburg, 14 March, 968. She was brought up at the monastery of Erfurt. Henry, whose marriage to a young widow, named Hathburg, had been declared invalid, asked for Matilda's hand, and married her in 909 at Walhausen, which he presented to her as a dowry. Matilda became the mother of: Otto I, Emperor of Germany; Henry, Duke of Bavaria; St. Bruno, Archbishop of Cologne; Gerberga, who married Louis IV of France; Hedwig, the mother of Hugh Capet. In 912 Matilda's husband succeeded his father as Duke of Saxony, and in 918 he was chosen to succeed King Conrad of Germany. As queen, Matilda was humble, pious, and generous, and was always ready to help the oppressed and unfortunate. She wielded a wholesome influence over the king. After a reign of seventeen years, he died in 936. He bequeathed to her all his possessions in Quedlinburg, Poehlden, Nordhausen, Grona, and Duderstadt.

      It was the king's wish that his eldest son, Otto, should succeed him. Matilda wanted her favourite son Henry on the royal throne. On the plea that he was the first-born son after his father became king, she induced a few nobles to cast their vote for him, but Otto was elected and crowned king on 8 August, 936. Three years later Henry revolted against his brother Otto, but, being unable to wrest the royal crown from him, submitted, and upon the intercession of Matilda was made Duke of Bavaria. Soon, however, the two brothers joined in persecuting their mother, whom they accused of having impoverished the crown by her lavish almsgiving. To satisfy them, she renounced the possessions the deceased king had bequeathed to her, and retired to her villa at Engern in Westphalia. But afterwards, when misfortune overtook her sons, Matilda was called back to the palace, and both Otto and Henry implored her pardon.

      Matilda built many churches, and founded or supported numerous monasteries. Her chief foundations were the monasteries at Quedlinburg, Nordhausen, Engern, and Poehlden. She spent many days at these monasteries and was especially fond of Nordhausen. She died at the convents of Sts. Servatius and Dionysius at Quedlinburg, and was buried there by the side of her husband. She was venerated as a saint immediately after her death. Her feast is celebrated on 14 March.

      Two old Lives of Matilda are extant; one, Vita antiquior, written in the monastery of Nordhausen and dedicated to the Emperor Otto II; edited by KOEPKE in Mon. Germ. Script., X, 575-582, and reprinted in MIGNE, P.L., CLI, 1313-26. The other, Vita Mahtildis reginae, written by order of the Emperor Henry II, is printed in mon. Germ. Script., IV, 283-302, and in MIGNE, P.L., CXXXV, 889-9220. CLARUS, Die heilige Mathilde, ihr Gemahl Heinrich I, und ihre Sohne Otto I, Heinrich und Bruno (Munster, 1867); SCHWARZ, Die heilige Mathilde, Gemahlin Heinrichs I. Konigs von Deutschland (Ratisbon, 1846); Acta SS., March, II, 351-65.

      MICHAEL T. OTT [3]
    Person ID I11181  Dickinson
    Last Modified 13 Feb 2017 

    Father Theodric,   d. 8 Nov 917 
    Relationship Birth 
    Mother Reginlind 
    Relationship Birth 
    Family ID F3944  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Henry I the Fowler, King of Germany,   b. 876, Memleben, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 2 Jul 936, Memleben, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 60 years) 
    Married 909  Wallhausen, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
     1. Otto I the Great, Holy Roman Emperor,   b. 23 Nov 912, Wallhausen, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 7 May 973, Memleben, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 60 years)  [Birth]
    +2. Gerberga of Saxony,   b. Abt 913, Nordhausen, Thuringia, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 5 May 984, Reims, Marne, Champagne-Ardenne, France Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 71 years)  [Birth]
    +3. Hedwig of Saxony,   b. Bef 922,   d. Aft 965  (Age ~ 44 years)  [Birth]
    Last Modified 23 May 2014 
    Family ID F3171  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - Abt 895 - Engern, Westphalia, Germany Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 909 - Wallhausen, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 14 Mar 968 - Quedlinburg, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBuried - - Quedlinburg Abbey, Quedlinburg, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Documents
    The Ottonians
    The Ottonians
    Chronica sancti Pantaleonis (1237)

    Histories
    Divines
    Divines

  • Sources 
    1. [S336463] Medieval Lands: A prosopography of medieval European noble and royal families, Charles Cawley, (Online: The Foundation for Medieval Genealogy, http://fmg.ac/Projects/MedLands/), fmg.ac/Projects/MedLands/SAXONY.htm#Mathildedied968.

    2. [S336470] Wikipedia, (Online: https://en.wikipedia.org), "Matilda of Ringelheim", http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matilda_of_Ringelheim.
      "Saint Mathilda (or Matilda, c. 895 - 14 March 968) was the wife of King Henry I of Germany, the first ruler of the Saxon Ottonian (or Liudolfing) dynasty, thereby Duchess (consort) of Saxony from 912 and Queen (consort) of Germany (East Francia) from 919 until her husband's death in 936. Their eldest son Otto succeeded his father as King of Germany (East Francia) and years later was crowned Holy Roman Emperor in 962, thus ending the vacancy of this office begun in 924 with the death of Holy Roman Emperor Berengar I of Italy. Matilda lived to see the imperial crown restored under her son. Matilda's surname refers to Ringelheim, where her comital Immedinger relatives established a convent about 940."

    3. [S336459] Catholic Encyclopedia, (New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1913), [Public Domain]., vol. 10.