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Matilda, Abbess of Quedlinburg

German abbess
The basics
Occupation Abbot
Date of birth
Date of death 999 Quedlinburg Abbey, Quedlinburg, Harz, Saxony-Anhalt
Sister(s): Emma of Italy Liutgarde
Mother: Adelaide of Italy
Brother(s): Otto II Holy Roman Emperor Liudolf Duke of Swabia William Archbishop of Mainz
Father: Otto I, Holy Roman Emperor
Authority VIAF id
The details

Matilda (December 955 – 999), also known as Mathilda and Mathilde, was the first Princess-Abbess of Quedlinburg. She was the daughter of Otto I, Holy Roman Emperor, and his second wife, Adelaide of Italy.

Taking the veil

Her grandmother, Saint Matilda, founded the Quedlinburg Abbey in 936. In April 966, in a splendid ceremony requested by her father, the eleven-year-old granddaughter and namesake of Saint Matilda was elected suae metropolitanae sibi haereditariae.


A year after becoming abbess, Matilda was assigned as regent of the kingdom when her father and brother Otto went to Italy. As regent, Matilda held a reforming synod at Dornberg. The synod was reforming in character and it concerned the church in Germany. In 984, she held an imperial diet at her abbey. At the diet, Henry the Wrangler questioned the right of Matilda's nephew to succeed his father. Matilda successfully defeated his claims and secured the election of her nephew as Holy Roman Emperor, therefore "holding the empire together". In 984, Matilda, her mother, Empress Adelaide, and her sister-in-law, Empress Theophanu, became co-regents for Matilda's young nephew, Otto III. A contemporary chronicler described her regency as being "without female levity". Matilda succeeded in restoring peace and authority by leading an army against the barbarians.


She died in February 999 and was succeeded as abbess of Quedlinburg by her niece, Adelaide I.


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