MALMFRED MSTISLAVNA (Malmfred) / Malmfreda / Malfred of Kiev (was born between 1095 and 1102 – † after 1135 г. in Denmark), the Queen of Norway, later the Queen of Denmark, in 1111 - 1130 was the wife of the King of Norway Sigurd I the Crusader, since 1133 was the wife of the King of Denmark Eric II [3, p. 83]


  • Mstislav Vladimirovich (Harald) the Great, the prince of Novgorod (1088–1094), the prince of Rostov (1094–1095), the Grand Prince of Kiev (1125–1132)


  • Christina (Kristina) Ingesdotter (1070-s – January 18, 1122), the princess of Sweden, the princess of Novgorod, the first wife of Mstislav the Great


The second [3, p. 88], or the third [1, p. 461; 4, c. 75; 14, tabl. 5; 16, tabl. 27, ES. T. II. Tafel 135], or the fourth [12, p. 34] daughter of Mstislav (Harold) the Great and Christina of Sweden. Like many other Rus princesses married abroad, she is not attested in Russian chronicles, but is well known through Scandinavian and Western European sources. The scatter of opinions regarding the place of Malmfred among the other children of Mstislav is explained by the fact that there is no clear information in the sources regarding their birth, and it is only possible to establish approximate dates  through indirect signs. The date of the wedding, from which such a calculation could be conducted, in this case, too, can only be set approximately. Scandinavian sources unambiguously indicate only that Malmfred was the daughter of the "King of Rus" Harold and Christina of Sweden, well-known to European chroniclers [I, p. 177-184; III, p. 258; IV, c. 295; V, p. 357]. D. Dombrowsky names the approximate time of birth in the interval between 1095 and 1102. [3, p. 88], linking it to the possible date of the wedding of Malmfred and King Sigurd I of Norway between 1111 and 1115 [ibid., p. 87]. Sources about this event have some discrepancies. For example, in the story of the Crusade of Sigurd I, it is said about the king's visit to Rus on his way home, where he met with Malmfred [VI, p. 727]. Researchers believe this information to be valid [6, p. 246, n. 26; 13]. At the same time, the "Rotten Skin" saga and Snorri Stuoluson report on a completely different route of Sigurd's return from Constantinople to Norway through Hungary, Swabia, Pannonia, Bavaria, etc., additionally indicating a meeting with the Emperor Lothair [V, p. 351-352; III p. 126]. News of the wedding with the Rus princess is found in these sources much later. This discrepancy might be explained by a number of hypotheses, none of which have priority. For example, V. I. Matuzova suggested that Rus may be mentioned under the name "Pannonia" [7, p. 136-137]. D. Dombrovsky criticizes doubts about the reliability of both reports and suggests that these contradictions are a consequence of the inaccuracy of the messages [3, p. 85–86].

As for the dating of the wedding of Malmfred and Sigurd I, there are different points of view on this issue. Among the possible dates is suggested 1111 [6, p. 246; 11, p. 146; 18, p. 63; 20, p. 195], 1116 [4, p. 73, 171; 5, p. 69; 15, p. 156, etc.] and 1120 [1, p. 461; 19, p. 387, etc.]. A number of researchers do not name the exact date [2, p. 507-508; 8, p. 341; 12, p. 34; 14, Tabl. 5; 16, Tabl. 27], or suggest approximate periods of time, as did the already mentioned D. Dombrowsky [3, p. 87] or V. Muderevich, pushing the lower limit of marriage up to 1113 [9, p. 7].

Finally there is a theory that the marriage was concluded during Sigurd's stay in Schleswig [11, p. 146; 17, s. 830], but this version was criticized [3, p. 87; 20, p. 195].

For Sigurd, marriage to Malmfred was the second marriage. His first wife was the daughter of the Irish dynast Biadmuin, but after the death of Sigurd's father and Sigurd's return to Norway, this marriage broke up.

In marriage Malmfred gave birth to a daughter Christina [IV, p. 372], but they did not have male offspring. Probably, it was the absence of sons that pushed Sigurd to divorce from Malfred shortly before his death in 1130 [V, p. 398]. A number of researchers believe the divorce to take place in 1128 [1, p. 461; 4, p. 73]. D. Dombrowsky connects the news from the "Circle of the Earth" about the next marriage of Sigurd after the divorce from Malmfred and the consecration of the Church of the Holy Cross in Konungakhelli in 1127 and puts forward 1126/27 as a possible date for the divorce [3, p. 92].

After the divorce Malmfred, apparently, remained in Norway. In 1130 her stepson Magnus became king, who was betrothed to the eldest daughter of Knut Lavard and Ingeborg Mstislavna [VII, p. 360]. Around 1131 Eric Emune, Eric Eyhode's bastard and Knut Lavard's brother requested Magnus  allow the engagement to Malmfred. After the assassination of Lavard on January 7, 1131, Eric became a contender for the Danish throne. A marriage with the sister of his brother's wife could provide Eric support in the struggle for the throne both in Norway and in Rus [3, p. 93; 10, p. 292-303].

Little is known about Malmfred's marriage to Eric. They did not have common children. Eric's bastard from the concubine Sven would later become king of Denmark. Eric will die on September 18, 1137. The date of Malmfred's death is impossible to determine. Indirect data can be obtained based on the traditions of naming the Rurikovich: Prince of Turov Yuri named his daughter Malmfred in the early 1150s. From this we can conclude that by this time Malmfred was no longer alive. In 1135 King Eric Emune of Denmark granted estates to the Archbishopric of Lund with the consent of his wife and son. Consequently, the time of death of the Danish queen could have occurred between 1135 and 1150. [3, p. 90]. 


  • Kristin Sigurdsdatter (around 1125 – 1178), the princess of Norway, the wife of Erling Skakke, the mother of Magnus V, the King of Norway


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Internet Resources 

1.      Arkhiv skandinavskikh istochnikov i kart

2.      "Gnilaia kozha'

3.      "Krasivaia kozha'

4.      "Saga o Kniutlingakh'

5.      Snorri Stuoluson. Krug zemnoi

6.      Sakson Grammatik. Deianiia danov. V 2 t. I–XVI knigi / Per. s lat. iaz. A.S. Dosaeva. M., 2017.

7.       Pashuto V.T. Vneshniaia politika Drevnei Rusi. M., 1968.