Jelena Lijepa

Jelena Lijepa

Jelena Lijepa (English: "Helen the Beautiful") was Queen of Croatia. She was born a Hungarian princess (Ilona) and was the daughter of Arpad King Bela I, sister to King Ladislaus I of Hungary, granddaughter of Polish King Mieszko II Lambert, and a great-granddaughter of Csar Samuil of Bulgaria. She became Queen of Croatia during her marriage with Croatian King Dmitar Zvonimir, a distant relative whom she married in 1063. They had a son, Radovan, who died in his late teens or early twenties.

Jelena had excellent family connections, being a daughter of Arpad King Bela I, a granddaughter of Polish King Mieszko II Lambert himself the uncle of Canute the Great King of Danes and England, a great-granddaughter of Csar Samuil and the aunt to Ladislaus' daughter Piroska, christened Irene, the mother of future Byzantine Emperor Manuel I and the wife of Byzantine Emperor John II Komnenos, brother of the historian Anna Comnena.

Jelena was very popular with the Croatians, and they often called her "Jelena Lijepa" ("Helen the Beauty"). She is thought to have been a joint ruler with her husband Zvonimir, and they saw their kingdom expand during his 14-year rule until his death in 1089. Upon the death of King Zvonimir, Jelena was said to have been quietly plotting the inheritance of the Croatian Crown for her brother, the King of Hungary, which caused a decade of war and instability in the kingdom. Jelena died around 1091.

She is not to be confused with Jelena of Zadar, who was the wife of Mihajlo Krešimir II in the 10th century.

External links

*http://members.tripod.com/royalcroatia/zvonimir.htm


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