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Christopher I of Denmark (The Kalmar Union)

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Christopher I
Christopher I Den (The Kalmar Union).png
Christopher I
King of Denmark
Reign 9th September, 1478 - 6th December, 1485
Predecessor Eric VIII
Successor Erix IX
King of Svealand and Viken
Reign 9th September, 1478 - 6th December, 1485
Predecessor Eric IX
Successor Erix X
Spouse Margaret of Meissen
House Estridsson
Father Eric VIII
Mother Joanna of Oldenburg
Born 10th June, 1443
Died 6th December, 1485
Øresund, between Copenhagen and Malmø

King of Denmark and Svealand for seven years in the late 1400s Christopher I is remembered for very little other than stoking Svealandic passions.

The eldest son of Eric VIII and acted as regent of the kingdoms during the War of the Lions when his father was abroad fighting in Flanders. His governing style was described as unimaginative and he deferred many decisions, either until the solved themselves or his father could return.

His succession was marred by a long dispute with the nobles of Svealand. The Danish nobles had arranged a light and not particularly onerous håndfæstning agreement with Christopher as a formality but when Svealand attempted to pass a different version with considerable limitations Christopher became enraged and refused. The Danish lords then had to be pestered for several months before they would raise an army to threaten Svealand with. This army, with Christopher at its head would march into Stockholm in 1480 without a fight, whereupon the Svealandic lords watered their document down. Though they had given in the high-handed way Christopher dealt with their grievances rankled and would eventually breed a movement amongst its nobles to regain their independence. The fact that the Vikene nobles had simply adopted the Danish version without much fuss pointed the way for its divorce from Svealand and eventual absorption by Denmark.

Christopher married Margaret of Meissen in 1463 but the marriage was loveless and he was accused of ignoring and belittling her. They would have no children, though he is known to have had at least three illegitimate children, and he would not remarry when she died in 1479. When he died in 1485 (after getting drunk and falling overboard into an ice-packed Øresund) the various lands would be inherited by his brother Eric. As his body was lost to the sea he would be the last Danish monarch not to have a proper burial. A man (usually identified as Olof Jernskjæg) claiming to be Christopher would appear in Lade in 1496 but he received little popular support and was quickly dealt with by the Ladish lords.

Ancestry

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