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Aldona of Lithuania

Aldona (baptized Ona or Anna; her pagan name, Aldona, is known only from the writings of Maciej Stryjkowski;[1] c. 1309 – 26 May 1339) was Queen consort of Poland (1333–1339), and a princess of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. She was the daughter of Gediminas, Grand Duke of Lithuania.

Aldona of Lithuania
Anna lithuania.jpeg
Queen consort of Poland
Tenure1333–1339
Coronation25 April 1333
PredecessorJadwiga of Kalisz
SuccessorVacant
(title next held by Adelaide of Hesse)
Bornc. 1309
DiedMay 26, 1339(1339-05-26) (aged 29–30)
SpouseCasimir III of Poland
IssueElisabeth, Duchess of Pomerania
Cunigunde, Duchess of Bavaria
HouseHouse of Gediminas
FatherGediminas
MotherJewna

BiographyEdit

Aldona married Casimir III of Poland, when he was 15 or 16 years old. The bride was probably of about the same age. The marriage took place on 30 April or 16 October 1325 and was a purely political maneuver to strengthen the first Polish–Lithuanian coalition against the Teutonic Knights.[2] Casimir was seeking allies in the dispute over Pomerania with the Order. Gediminas had just undertaken an unsuccessful attempt to Christianize Lithuania. This coalition was a prelude to the Union of Krewo in 1385, and the Union of Lublin in 1569, which resulted in the creation of a new state, the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth.[1] The details of the agreement are not known; however, it is known that Gediminas released all Polish captives, some 25,000 people, who returned to Poland.[2] The importance of the marriage was attested by the fact that Władysław abandoned his earlier plans to marry his son to Jutta of Bohemia.[3] The alliance was put into effect when joint Polish–Lithuanian forces organized an attack against the Margraviate of Brandenburg in 1326.[3] However, the coalition was not strong and collapsed c. 1330. Yet, there is no evidence of fighting between Poland and Lithuania while Aldona was alive.[2] Aldona died suddenly at the end of May 1339, and was buried in Kraków.

Aldona was remembered for her piety and devotion to music. She was accompanied by court musicians wherever she went. It was even suggested by Jan Długosz that the cymbals which were played in procession before her represented a pagan Lithuanian tradition.[4] Her husband Casimir is known for his romantic affairs: after Aldona's death he married three more times. Aldona had two daughters:

In popular cultureEdit

FilmEdit

Queen Aldona Anna is one of the main characters in the first season of Polish historical TV drama series "Korona Królów" ("The Crown of the Kings"). She is played by Marta Bryła.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Gudavičius, Edvardas (2004). "Aldona". In Spečiūnas, Vytautas (ed.). Lietuvos valdovai (XIII-XVIII a.): enciklopedinis žinynas (in Lithuanian). Vilnius: Mokslo ir enciklopedijų leidybos institutas. p. 40. ISBN 5-420-01535-8.
  2. ^ a b c Jonynas, Ignas (1933). "Aldona". In Biržiška, Vaclovas (ed.). Lietuviškoji enciklopedija (in Lithuanian). I. Kaunas: Spaudos Fondas. pp. 208–211.
  3. ^ a b Rowell, S. C. (Spring 1994). "Pious Princesses or Daughters of Belial: Pagan Lithuanian Dynastic Diplomacy, 1279–1423". Medieval Prosopography. 15 (1): 47. ISSN 0198-9405.
  4. ^ Rowell, S. C. (1994). Lithuania Ascending: A Pagan Empire Within East-Central Europe, 1295–1345. Cambridge Studies in Medieval Life and Thought: Fourth Series. Cambridge University Press. p. 232. ISBN 978-0-521-45011-9.
  5. ^ Rowell, C. S. Lithuania Ascending, xxxvi
Aldona of Lithuania
Born: 1309 Died: 26 May 1339
Royal titles
Preceded by
Jadwiga of Kalisz
Queen consort of Poland
1333–1339
Vacant
Title next held by
Adelaide of Hesse