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Eric V of Svealand (The Kalmar Union)

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Eric V
Eric V Svea (The Kalmar Union).png
Eric V
King of Svealand
Reign c. 970 - c. 995
Predecessor Bjorn III Eriksson?
Successor Olof I Skotkonung
Spouse Sigríð Storråda/Swietoslawa?
Issue Olof I Skotkonung
House Munso
Father Bjorn (III) Eriksson
Born c. 945
Died c. 995

Eric V is the first king of Svealand about whom anything is known. Previous kings, including Erics I-IV are considered unhistorical, however when the regnal numbers of the Svealandic kings were fixed in 1765 Eric's supposed ancestors in the sagas were taken as canon.

He appears in the records as victorious over the Jomsvikings in 970 in the Battle of Fýrisvellir a victory which gave him the epithet Segersäll or Victorious. Though this seems to have been a real event much of the rest of Eric's exploits are shrouded in myth.

Possibly not ruling over much of modern Svealand other than Uppland and the north of Lake Malaren the sagas suggest he had some sort of overlordship over Götaland as well as ruling over Denmark after defeating Sweyn Forkbeard, however these claims are generally rejected by Danish, Gothenlandic and Svealandic historians alike. The sagas also describe his marriage to the probably fictional Sigríð Storråda but this is problematic as she is said to have married Sweyn I after his death and she may be a amalgam of several women.

Supposedly Eric had been baptised in Denmark but forgot Christianity when he returned to Svealand, but as far as it is known Eric remained a pagan throughout his life. His victory at Fýrisvellir was apparently by presaged by sacrifices to Odin. He would die in 995 and would be succeeded by his only attested child Olof I Skotkonung.

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