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Eydis of Álengiamark (The Kalmar Union)

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Eydis
Eydis Álengia (The Kalmar Union).png
Eydis
Queen of Álengiamark
Reign 1st November, 1201 - December 1225
Predecessor Iofridr
Successor Frida
Spouse Birgir Gudjónsson

Halfdan Tantaquigsson

Issue Frida Birgirsdottír

Gudlaug Birgirsdottír
Birgir Birgirsson
Thorunn Birgirsdottír
Sigurjón Birgirsson
Baldur Birgirsson
Hafsteinn Birgirsson
Kristjana Birgirsdottír
Karí Halfdansson
Hafdis Halfdansdottír
Gudrun Halfdansdottír

Full name
Eydis Ulfsdottír
House Eiriksdottír
Father Ulf Jokullsson
Mother Iofridr Karísdottír
Born February 1166
Isafjordhur, Vinland
Died December 1225
Thyrnirvithur, Álengiamark

The eldest daughter of Iofridr, Eydis restored peace to Álengiamark after the civil war period. During her reign Álengsk military power was projected outwards into the largely un-tamed Leifian North-East however she did little to stop the decentralisation of political power at home.

After the Vinlanders had captured St. Hafdiss and executed the usurper Yrsa I, Iofridr and Eydis travelled to Álengiamark to restore Eiriksdottír, and Althing, rule. Iofridr returned to Vinland not long after being crowned, leaving Eydis to be her regent. Union between the two states was out of the question as it was felt that the Norse colonies were too spread out as it was and unified government would be essentially impossible.

Governing Álengiamark was almost impossible as it was. Eydis however, was the best candidate for the job. While her sisters ruling in Vinland could rely on earls who were more of less united, Eydis faced a deeply divided nobility. Although the civil war had exhausted much of their energies it still took all of her diplomacy and skill to carry through even the smallest policies of unity. To rebalance the Álthing she rolled back the pro-Suderfolk laws that had been introduced during Yrsa I's short reign and by 1203 the entire country was once again turning out for the Althing. Contemporary chronicles and sagas praise her as being extremely clever. She is said to have spoken Vinlandic, Danish, Latin, Beothukic (Vinlandic Skraeling), Quiripi and Passamaquoddy and could best anyone at games of skill.

In 1206 her sister Thorey II was killed in a hunting accident. Their next youngest sister, Kristjana I, appeared to seize the Vinlandic throne with undue haste and it was soon rumoured that she and her lover the Earl of Konunglegursaey had arranged the 'accident'. Eydis prepared for an invasion however was forced to abandon plans thanks to resurgent Kanien'gehaga. This event soured relations between the sisters and two states for decades to come.

Partially to counter Kristjana I and Vinland's seizure of what would soon become Fjallasay Eydis began to specifically target the Fraeburt Votnum. Rather than the tentative campaigns of Elisiv's reign the new campaigns looked for decisive victories that would put the neighbours off their raids. Well managed set-piece battles against the tribes now forming the Six Nations broke their control of the Kanien'gehaga River (though the Kanien'gehaga themselves remained stubbornly unbowed). This culminated in 1210 when the Wenro tribe on the South coast of Ontario Vatn, previously picked on by their neighbours, became an Álengsk protectorate (the future Ontario Fylk). This was mostly Eydis's doing as judicious bargaining and marriages had convinced its chief to ally, then formally accept protection. He was made an earl and its peoples a part, though often absent part, of the Althing. The yearly campaigning season would soon form a pattern; a host would be drawn together at St. Hafdiss in the spring, travel to Margirhaedeyja to pick up further men and supplies then campaign against the northern tribes. Resting in Ontario for midsummer the campaign would then turn against the tribes to the west and south; Eriac, Aniyunwiyan and others. On some years the host reached as far as the Yesan. This unified armed action forged a feeling that together the county was powerful, and certainly amongst its neighbours generated a fear of Álengsk military power. However at home away from the battles the country continued to fall apart.

To lure the earls and towns back to the Althing Eydis restated the various laws that allowed them to raise their own taxation and militia. Once the yearly campaigns proved so successful she attempted to back-pedal and re-centralise the organs of state. At this point however the lords would dig their heels in. Mistrust was still very much rampant. And Eydis probably knew if she ever dared to use the yearly Álengsk army against the earls or the towns she'd probably face another civil war.

While relations had deteriorated with Vinland this did not stop settlers from Vinland travelling southwards to join Álengiamark's growing prosperity. With the end of the pro-Suderfolk laws the entire country was open to settlement and as the raids from the Suderfolk became less common the farms multiplied. Previously Norse farmers had only really settled along the coast of Sudervik Fylk and around St. Hafdiss. Now the interior was much more open. The new settlers certainly had no allegiance to any Álengsk earl or city or abbey so only helped fuel the divisions as the lords attempted to extend their control over new settlements. And while the populations did not immediately mix the spread of settlement certainly helped the blending of peoples, culture and language in future generations.

Eydis married twice and had 11 children, many of whom were married off to prominent nobles in the name of forging internal alliances. She would be succeeded by her eldest surviving daughter Frida.

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