Aelfgifu of Northampton Family Tree (990-1044)

Aelfgifu of Northampton Family Tree


 Aelfgifu of Northampton Family Tree showing:


Short Biography

Aelfgifu of Northampton was born around 990 the daughter of Aelfhelm, Earldorman of Northumbria. Her father was murdered in 1006 and her two brothers were blinded around the same time, thought to be on the orders of King Aethelred the Unready

When Sweyn Forkbeard invaded in 1013 the family supported the Dane and Aelfgifu married his son, Canute. Aelfgifu and Canute had two children, Sweyn born in 1015 and Harold born in 1016. Sweyn Forkbeard defeated Aethelred late in 1013 and became King. When he died in 1014, he nominated Canute to be King but the Witan refused to accept him and called for the return of Aethelred.

Following Aethelred’s death in 1016, his son Edmund, known as Ironside, became King. Canute continued to challenge for the throne and when Edmund died took the English throne. Aelfgifu was put aside shortly after Canute’s accession and Canute married Emma of Normandy, Aethelred’s widow.

Aelfgifu continued to support her sons, but when Canute died in 1035 the throne passed to his son by Emma, Harthacnut, but when he was unable to return to England due to conflicts in Denmark, the Witan crowned Aelfgifu’s son, Harold in 1037. Harold’s elder brother Sweyn had died earlier in 1037. Aelfgifu died around 1044.


Published Jun 26, 2017 @ 15:59 pm – Updated – Apr 4, 2024 @ 12:01 pm

Harvard Reference for this page:

Heather Y Wheeler. (2017 – ). Aelfgifu of Northampton Family Tree (990-1044). Available: Last accessed June 23rd, 2024