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Rogneda of Polotsk

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Vladimir and Rogneda (1770).

Rogneda of Polotsk (962-1002) is the Slavic name for Ragnhild, whose father Ragnvald (Slavic: Rogvolod) came from overseas (i.e., from Scandinavia) and established himself at Polotsk in the mid-10th century.

It has been speculated that Ragnvald belonged to the Ynglings royal family of Norway. In or about 980, Vladimir of Novgorod, on learning that she was betrothed to his brother Yaropolk I of Kiev, took Polotsk and forced Rogneda to marry him. Having raped Rogneda in the presence of her parents, he ordered them to be killed, along with two of Rogneda's brothers.

Rogneda gave him several children. The four sons were Yaroslav the Wise, Vsevolod, Mstislav, and Izyaslav. She also bore two daughters, one of whom is named by Nestor the Chronicler as Predslava (taken as a concubine of Boleslaus I of Poland, according to Gallus). A later chronicle tells a story, most likely taken from a Norse saga, of Rogneda plotting against Vladimir and asking her elder son, Izyaslav, to kill him. As was the Norse royal custom, she was sent with her elder son to govern the land of her parents, i.e. Polotsk. Izyaslav's line continued to rule Polotsk and the newly-found town of Izyaslavl until the Mongol invasion.

There is another legend, that she became a nun and took the name Anastasia.be:Рагнеда

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