Liudolf (born about 805, died 12 March 864 or 866) was a Saxon count, son of one count (Graf) Brun (Brunhart) and his wife Gisla von Verla ; later authors called him duke of the Eastern Saxons (dux orientalis Saxonum, probably since 850) and count of Eastphalia. Liudolf had extended possessions in eastern Saxony, and was a leader (dux) in the wars of King Louis the German against Normans and Slavs. The ruling Liudolfing House, also known as the Ottonian dynasty, is named after him; he is its oldest verified member.
Before 830 Liudolf married Oda, daughter of a Frankish princeps named Billung and his wife Aeda. Oda died on 17 May 913, supposedly at the age of 107.
They had six children:
Otto the Illustrious, father of Henry the Fowler
Liutgard married King Louis the Younger in 874.
Hathumoda, became an abbess
Gerberga, became an abbess
Christina, became an abbess
By marrying a Frankish nobleman's daughter, Liudolf followed suggestions set forth by Charlemagne about ensuring the integrity of the Frankish Empire in the aftermath of the Saxon Wars through marriage.
In 845/846, Liudolf and his wife traveled to Rome in order to ask Pope Sergius II for permission to found a house of secular canonesses, duly established at their proprietary church in Brunshausen around 852, and moved in 881 to form Gandersheim Abbey. Liudolf's minor daughter Hathumod became the first abbess.
Liudolf is buried in Brunshausen.
1. The Encyclopaedia Britannica, Vol 24, Ed. Hugh Chisholm, (1911), 268.
3.Saint Odilo (Abbot of Cluny), Queenship and sanctity: The lives of Mathilda and The epitaph of Adelheid, translated by Sean Gilsdorf, (Catholic University of America Press, 2004), 24.
4.Althoff, Gerd, Christopher Carroll, Family, friends and followers: political and social bonds in medieval Europe, (Cambridge University Press, 2004), 38.
5.The rise of the medieval world, 500-1300: a biographical dictionary, Ed. Jana K. Schulman , (Greenwood Press, 2002), 271.
6.The rise of the medieval world, 500-1300: a biographical dictionary, 271.
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