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Thyri of Vinland (The Kalmar Union)

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Thyri
Thyri Vin (The Kalmar Union).png
Thyri
Queen of Vinland
Reign 17th September, 1280 - 14th November, 1287
Coronation n/a
Predecessor Kristjana II
Successor Kristjana III
Spouse Olaf Skulisson
Issue Vilhjálmur Olafsson

Kristjana III Olafsdottír

Full name
Thyri Invarsdottír
House Eriksdottír
Father Invar Gudmundursson
Mother Halldora Halfdansdottír
Born 23rd March, 1259
Sjóeyjor, Markland, Vinland
Died 14th November, 1287
Myllametstram, Nor-Hafsvaedaland, Vinland

Thyri, Queen of Vinland's reign is chiefly famous as the end of the conquest of Hafsvaedaland. She was also the first queen who was elected, not by right of inheritance, but by the will of the Althing.

Her predecessor, Kristjana II never formally designated her successor but it was assumed by the nobility that it would fall to either of her two daughters, Snaedis or Áslaug. However their father Gardar Ivarsson had fallen out with several Althing members over taxation rights. Normally this would not have changed anything, the royal family was frequently at odds with the Althing or the nobility over the boundaries of their rights, however in this case the Althing had a powerful army at their disposal. In the year before her death Kristjana had worked closely with the Althing to bring a large (about 500 men) Icelandic army to campaign in the Hafsvaedaland as a way of out-competing the earls and bending them finally to central authority. This army, sat waiting on Konunglegursaey, allowed the Althing to dictate the succession. Snaedis and Áslaug, sat in distant Fjallasay, were quietly ruled out. Instead the Marklandish Thyri was chosen.

The great-granddaughter of Jakobina I, Thyri had spent five years running the earldom of Markland as regent for her much younger brother Kári and was well regarded within the Althing for good orderly government. Crowned in Isafjordhur in October 1280, it would be under her name that the Icelanders campaigned in the Hafsvaedaland and it would be under her name that the Treaty of Mississaugua would be signed in 1282.

The Icelanders were armed with crossbows, a weapon which had not been seen in Leifia until that point and quickly proved its superiority over the bow-wielding and poorly armoured tribes. Unlike the previous attempts of the earls the Icelanders did not raise forts to control areas, they simply advanced, sweeping aside those tribes unwilling to make peace. Meanwhile, the 'royal' army tidied up the rear. The earls quickly added their own forces to the advance, eager to join in the conquest and hopefully be rewarded for their loyalty. At the Siege of Saginaw, the Sauk capital, the sheer power of the crossbows were overwhelming and the fort was taken in a bloody massacre of the defenders. Though the Sauk, and their allies, would continue to harass the Vinlandic army for decades to come the tribal nature of Hafsvaedaland had in effect been broken. At Mississauga in May 1282 the earls of Markland, Ingolfursey and Eikland signed peace with a host of Algonquin tribal leaders confirming their allegiance to Thyri and the Althing. The boundaries were set at the edge of Aniyunwiyan land to the south, and the friendly tribe of Neshabek to the west. To the north, the Atikamekw were recognised as separate (probably thanks to their continued help in pacifying the lands) but the border was somewhat fluid and settlements were not always permanent. The Icelanders largely departed in 1283 for Europe - incidentally unwittingly introducing the Great Pox to Europe - and Vinlandic military advantage was only maintained by prodigious use of mercenaries from all over North-Eastern Leifia.

The considerable lands taken by the Treaty took the rest of Thyri's reign to parcel out. All the tribal leaders present at the signing, plus one or two others, were granted earldoms. Other prime locations were handed to minor lords, importantly many outside the Eiriksson family. Although a concerted effort was made to settle the region it would take centuries to become 'Vinlandic' and it would suffer constant turmoil as the tribal earls fought against the confines of their overlords. The Sauk lands to the west of the Briedurass became something akin to a vassal-state and no attempts would be made to settle until much later. The settled area was divided up into counties just like the lands to the east, each county bound to send a representative to Isafjordhur each year (although many simply couldn't thanks to a general absence of people). The whole point of the exercise of conquering the Hafsvaedaland was to increase the earls, and the crown/Althing's, incomes. However virtually no tax was ever sent to Isafjordhur for the first 150 years. Instead it disappeared into the pockets of the local lords and churches, mindful they had to pay to maintain their forts (which in turn guaranteed their revenues). The crown instead relied more and more on the tolls collected at Fjallasay whilst the Althing relied on what settlements in the east it could realistically tax and what it could skim off Atlantic trading routes.

Her reign also saw the crossing of Leifia and the first sighting of the Roasjoinn from the party of Hjortur Elvarsson. It also saw the rapid improvement of relations with Álengiamark after the succession of Thyri's cousin Thorey II to the throne following forty years of Aniyunwiyan domination.

Thyri died in 1287, apparently in childbirth and was succeeded by her young daughter Kristjana.

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