Oldrich, Duke of Bohemia


Oldrich, Duke of Bohemia
Oldrzych.jpg

Oldrich (also Ulrich or Oldřich) (ca. 975 – 11 November 1034) was the duke of Bohemia from 1012 to 1033 and briefly in 1034. He was a son of Boleslaus II and brother of Boleslaus III and Jaromir.

Oldrich deposed Jaromir on 12 April 1012 and recognised the suzerainty of the Holy Roman Emperor. Discarding his wife on the grounds that they were childless, Oldrich married a peasant woman known as Bozena. Oldrich and his son Bretislaus sought to win back Moravia from the Poles and in 1029 Bretislaus drove the Poles out of the eastern lands. Bretislaus' efforts in Slovakia against Hungary failed in 1030 because of the jealousy of the Emperor Conrad II. In the following year, Czech forces refused to take the field for the emperor.

In 1032, Oldrich was invited to the Diet of Merseburg and did not appear. His absence raised the ire of the emperor and Conrad, busy with events in Burgundy, charged his son Henry VI, Duke of Bavaria, with punishing the recalcitrant Bohemian. Oldrich made subjection and was deposed and sent to Bavaria. He was replaced by Jaromir, but he in turn was captured, blinded, and deposed by Oldrich, who seized power again and drove out Jaromir's son from Moravia. Oldrich died abruptly on 9 November 1034 and later examination of his skeleton reveal his skull to have suffered a fatal blow. Jaromir then renounced the throne in favour of Bretislaus.

Preceded by
Jaromir
Duke of Bohemia
1012–1033
Succeeded by
Jaromir
Preceded by
Jaromir
Duke of Bohemia
1034
Succeeded by
Bretislaus I