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Boleslaus I of Poland

Boleslaw I Chrobry ('Boleslaus the Brave') (born 966/967, died 1025), duke of Poland 992- and in 1025 king, probably the son of Mieszko I and his first wife, the Czech princess Dubrawka.

Boleslaus's Career

In 984 Boleslaus married Rikdaga, the daughter of the margrave of Meissen, followed by the Judith, the daughter of Geza the Great Prince of Hungary , then Enmilda, the daughter of one Dobromir, a Lusatian prince; and Oda, daughter of the margrave of Meissen. His wives bore him sons including Bezprym, Mieszko II and Otton, and a daughter, Mathilde.

In 997 Boleslaus sent St. Adalbert of Prague to Prussia on the Baltic Sea to attempt to convert the Prussians to Christianity. In 990 he conquered Silesia. By this time he was already in possession of Pomerania with its main city of Danzig, and of Little Poland with its main city of Cracow, and of Slovakia.

In A.D. 1000, while on a pilgrimage to the tomb of St. Adalbert at Gniezno, the emperor Otto III invested Boleslaus with the title Frater et Cooperator Imperii ("Brother and Partner of the Empire"). On the same visit Otto III raised Gnesen/Gniezno to the rank of an archbishopric[?].

After the untimely death of Otto III in 1002 at the age of 22, Boleslaus conquered Meissen and Lusatia (German Lausitz), in an attempt to wrest imperial territory for himself during the disputes over the throne; he and his father had both backed Henry the Quarrelsome against Otto earlier, and he accepted the accession of Henry II of Germany, the earlier Henry's son.

Boleslaus conquered and made himself duke of Bohemia and Moravia in 1003-1004; he defeated the Russians and stormed Kiev in 1018, annexing Grody Czerwienskie[?] and making prince Sviatopelk[?] his vassal there. The intermittent wars with Germany were terminated with the Peace of Bautzen, Budziszyn[?] in 1018, which left Meissen and Lausitz temporarily in Polish hands.

Boleslaus was forced by the next emperor, Henry II, to give a pledge of allegiance again for the lands he held in fief. When Henry died in 1024, Boleslaus made himself king, passing the title to his successors.

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