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Henry Ii


HENRY II. (973-1024), surnamed the "Saint," Roman emperor, son of Henry II., the Quarrelsome, duke of Bavaria, and Gisela, daughter of Conrad, king of Burgundy, or Arles (d. 993), and great-grandson of the German king Henry I., was born on May 6, 973, and was educated at Hildesheim and at Regensburg. He became duke of Bavaria on his father's death in 995, and about 1001 married Kunigunde (d. I o3 7 ), daughter of Siegfried, count of Luxemburg. When Otto III. died childless in 1002, Henry was chosen German king by the Franks and Bavarians on June 7, 1002, and subsequently crowned by Willigis, archbishop of Mainz. He purchased the allegiance of the Thur ingians and the Saxons ; and when shortly afterwards the nobles of Lorraine did homage and Hermann of Swabia, his rival, sub mitted, he was generally recognized as king. An incipient war with Boleslaus I., the Great, king of Poland, who had extended his authority over Meissen and Lusatia, seized Bohemia, and allied himself with some discontented German nobles, including the king's brother, Bruno, bishop of Augsburg, was abandoned in favour of an expedition into Italy, where Arduin, margrave of Ivrea, had been elected king. Crossing the Alps Henry met with no resistance from Arduin, and in May 1004 was crowned king of the Lombards at Pavia. He then freed Bohemia from the rule of the Poles, led an expedition into Friesland, and compelled Boleslaus to sue for peace in 1 oo5. A struggle with Baldwin IV , count of Flanders, in 1006 and I007 was followed by trouble with the king's brothers-in-law, Dietrich and Adalbero of Luxem burg, who had seized respectively the bishopric of Metz and the archbishopric of Trier (Treves). In Io13, peace was made with Boleslaus and later in the year, the king went to Rome where, having recognized Benedict VIII. as the rightful pope, he was crowned emperor on Feb. 14, 1014. But the struggle with the Poles broke out afresh, and in 1015 and 1017 Henry led for midable armies against Boleslaus. On Jan. 3o, he made peace at Bautzen, Boleslaus retaining Lusatia. As early as 1006 Henry had concluded a succession treaty with his uncle Rudolph III., the childless king of Burgundy, or Arles; but when Rudolph de sired to abdicate in 1016 Henry's efforts to secure possession of the crown were resisted by the nobles. In 1020 the emperor was visited at Bamberg by Pope Benedict, in response to whose en treaty for assistance against the Greeks of southern Italy he crossed the Alps in 1021 for the third time. With the aid of the Normans he crippled the Greeks, but was compelled by pestilence among his troops to return to Germany in 1022. He died on July 13, 1024 at Grona near Gottingen.

Henry was an enthusiast for church reform, and under the influence of his friend Odilo, abbot of Cluny, sought to further the principles of the Cluniacs, and seconded the efforts of Bene dict VIII. to prevent clerical marriage and the sale of spiritual dignities. Nevertheless he appointed bishops without the formal ity of an election, and sometimes attacked clerical privileges. He held numerous diets and issued frequent ordinances for peace, but feuds among the nobles were common, and the frontiers of the empire were insecure. Henry, who was the last emperor of the Saxon house, was the first to use the title "King of the Romans." He was canonized in 1146 by Eugenius III.

See Adalbold of Utrecht, Vita Heinrici II., Thietmar of Merseburg, Chronicon, both in the Monum. Germ. hist. Scriptores, iii. and iv. (1826 seq.) ; W. von Giesebrecht, Geschichte der deutschen Kaiserzeit (Leipzig, 1881-9o) ; S. Hirsch, Jahrbiicher des deutschen Reichs unter Kaiser Heinrich II. (Leipzig, 1874) ; A. Cohn, Kaiser Heinrich II. (Halle, 1867) ; H. Zeissberg, Die Kriege Kaiser Heinrichs II. mit Boleslaw I. von Polen (Vienna, 1868) ; and G. Matthaei, Die Kloster politik Kaiser Heinrichs II. (Gottingen, 1877). Further bibliography in Camb. Mediaeval Hist. vol. iii.

king, boleslaus, nobles, emperor, peace and kaiser