Zbyslava of Kiev

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Zbyslava of Kiev
Duchess consort of Poland
Reign 1102–1114
Born c. 1085/90
Died c. 1114
Issue Władysław II the Exile
Judith, Princess of Murom
House Rurikid
Father Sviatopolk II of Kiev
Mother Premyslid princess

Zbyslava of Kiev (Russian: Сбыслава Святополковна, Polish: Zbysława kijowska; c. 1085/90 – c. 1114), was a Kievan Rus' princess member of the Rurikid dynasty and by marriage Duchess of Poland.

She was the daughter of Sviatopolk II, Grand Prince of Kiev by his first wife, who is believed was a Premyslid princess.[1]


During his fight against his half-brother Zbigniew, the Junior Duke of Poland, Bolesław III Wrymouth, allied himself with Kievan Rus' and Hungary. In order to seal his alliance with the Grand Prince of Kiev, Bolesław III was betrothed to his eldest daughter Zbyslava. The Primary Chronicle names Zbyslava, daughter of Svyatopolk when recording that she was taken to Poland on 16 November 1102 to marry Bolesław III.[2] Thus, the marriage took place between that date or in early 1103. They had only one known son, the future Władysław II the Exile, born in 1105,[3] and a daughter (perhaps named Judith), born around 1111 and later wife of Vsevolod Davidovich, Prince of Murom.[4]

Her date of death is uncertain. Sources plac Zbyslava's death between the years 1109 and 1112.[5][6] She most likely died by 1114 at the latest,[7] as one year later (in 1115), Bolesław III married Salomea, daughter of Henry, Count of Berg-Schelklingen.


  1. The assumption that Sviatopolk II's first wife was a Bohemian princess was made by the historian Aleksandr Nazarenko: according to him, Polish chronicles stated that was necessary to obtain the Pope's dispensation for Zbyslava's marriage, because she and her husband are closely related. This is understandable, if is true the version that Sviatopolk II was the son of Gertrude of Poland. However, Nazarenko drew attention to the "Gertrude Psalter", in which she calls Prince Yaropolk unicus filius meus (my only son) and in consequence, Sviatopolk II could be an illegitimate child. In this case, the link that makes Zbyslava and her husband close relatives, must go through the female line: between Bolesław III (son of Princess Judith of Bohemia) and Zbyslava's mother, the first wife of Sviatopolk II. This fact allows Nazarenko come to a conclusion regarding the origin and identity of this woman. From his point of view, she was the daughter of Spytihnev II, Duke of Bohemia (d. 1061) by his wife Ida, sister of Dedi I, Margrave of the Saxon Ostmark (whose stepdaughter Cunigunde of Orlamünde married with Prince Yaropolk, Sviatopolk II's brother). A. V. Nazarenko, International Relations of Ancient Rus, p. 576
  2. Russian Primary Chronicle (1102), ed. 1973, p. 199.
  3. Gallus Anonymus recorded the birth of a second son from Bolesław III and Zbyslava, but modern historians believed that this child never existed. Oswald Balzer placed the birth of this son between 1107/08; O. Balzer: Genealogia Piastów, p. 121.
  4. J. Żylińska: Piastówny i żony Piastów, Warsaw 1975, pp. 99, 113.
  5. Cawley, Charles, POLAND, Medieval Lands database, FMG, retrieved August 2012 Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>,[better source needed]
  6. Marek, Miroslav. "Complete Genealogy of the Piast dynasty". Genealogy.EU. External link in |publisher= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>[self-published source][better source needed]
  7. A wide scientific discussion over the death of Zbyslava was presented in the work of K. Kollinger. See K. Kollinger: The problem of food in 1109, Zbyslava's death and the Polish-Kievan alliance in 1102–1114 [access 13 September 2009], pp. 42–46.
Zbyslava of Kiev
Born: c. 1085/90 Died: c. 1114
Royal titles
Preceded by
Judith of Swabia
Duchess consort of Poland
Succeeded by
Salomea of Berg