Otto II, called the Red, was Holy Roman Emperor from 973 until his death in 983. A member of the Ottonian dynasty, Otto II was the youngest and sole surviving son of Otto the Great and Adelaide of Italy. Otto II was made joint-ruler of Germany in 961, at an early age, and his father named him co-Emperor in 967 to secure his succession to the throne. His father also arranged for Otto II to marry the Byzantine Princess Theophanu, who would be his wife until his death. When his father died after ahttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otto_II,_Holy_Roman_Emperor
Otto II, called the Red, was Holy Roman Emperor from 973 until his death in 983. A member of the Ottonian dynasty, Otto II was the youngest and sole surviving son of Otto the Great and Adelaide of Italy. Otto II was made joint-ruler of Germany in 961, at an early age, and his father named him co-Emperor in 967 to secure his succession to the throne. His father also arranged for Otto II to marry the Byzantine Princess Theophanu, who would be his wife until his death. When his father died after a
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Otto II, German king from 961 and Holy Roman emperor from 967, sole ruler from 973, son of Otto I and his second wife, Adelaide. Otto, a cultivated man, continued his father’s policies of promoting a strong monarchy in Germany and of extending the influence of his house in Italy. In 961 he was
- Birth and Youth
- Heir Apparent
- Reign as Emperor
- Reign in Italy
- Venetian Affairs
- Religious Policy
- Southern Expansion
- Great Slav Uprising
- Ottonian Dynasty
Otto II was born in 955, the third son of the King of Germany Otto I and his second wife Adelaide of Italy. By 957, Otto II's older brothers Henry (born 952) and Bruno (born 953) had died, as well as Otto I's son from his first wife Eadgyth, the Crown Prince Liudolf, Duke of Swabia. With his older brothers dead, the two-year old Otto II's became the Kingdom's crown prince and Otto I's heir apparent. Otto I entrusted his illegitimate son, Archbishop William of Mainz, with Otto II's literary and cultural education. Margrave Odo, commander of the Eastern March, taught the young crown prince the art of war and the kingdom's legal customs. Needing to put his affairs in order prior to his descent into Italy, Otto I summoned a Diet at Worms and had Otto II elected, at the age of six, co-regent in May 961. Otto II was later crowned by his uncle Bruno the Great, Archbishop of Cologne, at Aachen Cathedral on May 26, 961. While Otto I had secured succession of the throne, he had violated the K...
Though Otto I was crowned Emperor in 962 and returned to Germany in 965, the political situation in Italy remained unstable. After almost two years in Germany, Otto I made a third expedition to Italy in 966. Bruno was again appointed regent over the eleven-year old Otto II during Otto I's absence. With his power over northern and central Italy secured, Otto I sought to clarify his relationship with the Byzantine Empire in the East. The Byzantine Emperor objected to Otto's use of the title "Emperor". The situation between East and West was finally resolved to share sovereignty over southern Italy. Otto I sought a marriage alliance between his Imperial house and the Eastern Macedonian dynasty. A prerequisite for the marriage alliance was the coronation of Otto II as Co-Emperor. Otto I then sent word for Otto II to join him in Italy. In October 967, father and son met in Verona and together marched through Ravenna to Rome. On December 25, 967, Otto II was crowned Co-Emperor by Pope Joh...
Coronation and domestic strife
When Otto the Great died, the smooth succession to the imperial throne of Otto II had long been guaranteed. Otto II had been king of Germany for twelve years and Emperor for five at the time of Otto the Great's death. Unlike his father, Otto II did not have any brothers to contest his claims to the throne. On May 8, the nobles of the Empire assembled before Otto II and, according to the Saxon Chronicler Widukind of Corvey, "elected" Otto II as his father's successor. One of Otto II's first ac...
Conflict with Henry II
Otto II sought continued peace between himself and the descendants of his uncle Henry I, Duke of Bavaria. To ensure domestic tranquillity, Otto II, on June 27, 973, granted his cousin, Henry II, Duke of Bavaria, control over the imperial castles in Bamberg and Stegaurach. This was not enough for the young Bavarian Duke, who wished to extend his influence in the Duchy of Swabia as his father had under Otto the Great. The death of Bishop Ulrich of Augsburg on July 4, 973, brought the conflict b...
War with Denmark
In 950, Otto the Great had subdued the Kingdom of Denmark and forced the Danish King Gorm the Old to accept him as his overlord. Otto the Great also forced the king and his heir apparent Harald Bluetooth to convert to Christianity. Under the reign of Otto the Great, Denmark fulfilled all its obligations and regularly paid tribute to the Germans. When Harald became king in 958, he expanded the control of his kingdom into Norway, becoming king there in 970. With his newly obtained power, the yo...
With his rule north of the Alps secured and with the birth of his heir, Otto II shifted his focus to Italy. The situation south of the Alps was chaotic. Pope Benedict VI, who had been appointed by Otto I, had been imprisoned by the Romans in Castel Sant'Angelo. When Otto II sent an imperial representative, Count Sicco, to secure his release, Crescentius I and Cardinal Franco Ferrucci had Benedict VI murdered while still in prison in 974. Cardinal Franco Ferrucci then crowned himself as Benedi...
The relationship between the Empire and the Republic of Venice was readdressed during Otto II's reign. In 966, The Doge of Venice Peitro IV married a relative of Otto I. The marriage brought the Empire and Venice into close relationship, with Otto I, in 967, granting a series of commercial agreements to Venice in general and to Pietro IV's family in particular. These agreements strengthened Venice's tie to the Western Empire, which greatly angered the Byzantine Emperor John I Tzimisces as Venice controlled all sea trade between Western Europe and the Byzantine Levant in the East. Otto I's military protection of Pietro IV ensured his hold over power in Venice despite his autocratic tendencies over the republican city. In 973, however, Otto I died. With Otto II busy suppressing revolts in Germany, the Venetians opposed to Pietro IV found their opportunity to depose him. Imprisoning the Doge within his palace, the Venetians nobles set fire to the building. However, the fire soon spread...
Otto II followed the policy of his father in expanding the importance of the Church in his Empire, in particular the importance of monasticism and monasteries. The Church and its organs served as supporting and stabilizing factor in the Empire's structure. To fulfill these tasks, Otto II strengthened the legal integrity and economic independence of the bishops from the secular nobility. The Ottonians had particular religious interest in Memleben as both Otto II's father Otto I and grandfather Henry I had died there. Otto II and his wife Theophanu enhanced the spiritual importance of the city by establishing a Benedictine Imperial abbey there: the Memleben Abbey. Within a short time, the Memleben Abbey had become one of the richest and most influential of the Imperial abbeys. These measures and the unusual size of the abbey perhaps suggest that Memleben may have been intended as an Imperial Mausoleum for the Ottonians. Following the suppression of Henry II's rebellion, Otto II used t...
In regard to his Italian policy, Otto II went beyond the goals of his father. Not satisfied with the territorial gains made under Otto I, Otto II wanted more. His policy was based not only on securing his power in Rome, or to cooperate with the Papacy, but also to gain absolute dominion over the whole of Italy. Influenced by his wife, who was hostile to the return of the Macedonian Dynasty in the shape of Byzantine Emperor Basil II after the assassination of John I Tzimisces, Otto II was persuaded to annex the Byzantine controlled southern Italy. However, this policy necessarily meant war with not only the Byzantine Empire but the Muslim Fatimid Caliphate as well, who claimed southern Italy as within their sphere influence. The Ottonians' chief lieutenant in central and southern Italy had long been the Lombard leader Pandulf Ironhead. Originally appointed by Otto I as Prince of Benevento and Capua in 961, Pandulf waged war against the Byzantines and expanded Ottonian control to incl...
The Northern March (outlined in red) between the Billung March in the north and the Saxon Eastern March (March of Lusatia) in the south. Both the Billung March and the North March were lost following the Great Slav Rising. Around the year 982, Imperial authority in Slavic territory extended as far east as the Lusatian Neisse River and as far south as the Ore Mountains. Following the defeat of Otto II at Stilo in 983, the Lutici Federation of Polabian Slavs revolted against their German overlords, sparking a great revolt known as the Great Slav Rising (Slawenaufstand). The Polabian Slavs destroyed the bishoprics of Havelberg and Brandenburg. According the German chronicler Bishop Thietmar of Merseburg, the decades-long, forced Germanization and Christianization of the Slavs associated with these two churches was the reason for their destruction. Thietmar blames the uprising on maltreatment of the Slavs by the Germans: "Warriors, who used to be our servants, now free as a consequence...
Otto was a man of small stature, by nature brave and impulsive, and by training an accomplished knight. He was generous to the church and aided the spread of Christianity in many ways. According to one of the chroniclers of the time, he was given the epithet of the "Red" when in 981 he invited the most troublesome of the Roman families to a banquet, and proceeded to butcher them at dinner. More sympathetic chroniclers said that it was due to his reddish complexion. Family and children
Otto II was a member of the Ottonian dynasty of rulers of Germany (and later the Holy Roman Empire) from 919 to 1024. In relation to the other members of his dynasty, Otto II was the grandson of Henry I, son of Otto I, father of Otto III, and a first-cousin once removed to Henry II. Otto II had only one known wife. On April 14, 972, Otto II married Theophanu, a Byzantine princess of the Phokas family who was the cousin of reigning Byzantine Emperor John I Tzimiskes. The two had at least five children: 1. Sophie I, Abbess of Gandersheim and Essen, born 975, died 1039. 2. Adelheid I, Abbess of Quedlinburg and Gandersheim, born November or December 977, died 1040. 3. Matilda, born 979, died 1025; who married Ezzo, count palatine of Lotharingia 4. Otto III, Holy Roman Emperor, born June or July 980 5. A daughter, a twin to Otto, who died before October 8, 980 Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otto_II,_Holy_Roman_Emperor
Holy Roman Emperor Otto II was born around 955. The only surviving son of Emperor Otto I and his second wife, Adelaide, Prince Otto became his father’s heir at a young age. During his reign, Otto I successfully consolidated his power over the empire.
Otto II; Holy Roman Emperor; Reign: May 7, 973 – December 7, 983: Predecessor: Otto I: Successor: Otto III: King of Italy; Reign: December 25, 980 – December 7, 983
Otto II (955 – December 7, 983), called the Red (Rufus), was Holy Roman Emperor from 973 until his death in 983. A member of the Ottonian dynasty, Otto II was the youngest and sole surviving son of Otto the Great and Adelaide of Italy.
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OTTO II. Facts and events; Families; Notes; Media; Album; Events of close relatives. Birth: 955 42 24. Death of a maternal grandmother: Bertha VON SWABIA January 2 ...
Emperor Otto II UNSPECIFIED - CIRCA 2002: Emperor Otto II surrounded by allegories of the provinces of the Empire, miniature, 10th Century. (Photo by DeAgostini/Getty Images)