Cedrag, Prince of the Obotrites

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Cedrag, Prince of the Obotrites

Russian: Цедраг, верховный князь Ободритского племенного союза, Latin: Ceadragus, Prince of the Obotrites, Polish: Czedróg, książę Obodrytów
Also Known As: "Gedrah", "Sidgar", "Ceadragus", "Cedragus", "Barivoy"
Death: circa 830 (27-43)
Immediate Family:

Son of Dražko and Lub [wym. 823] - ? Ludowit [wym. 820] król Wilców
Father of Gostomysl, Grand Prince of the Obrodites
Brother of Miłogost [wym. od 823] syn Luby, książę Obotrytów

Managed by: Tony Karlsson
Last Updated:

About Cedrag, Prince of the Obotrites

Main source of information about existence of Ceadragus (pronounced as Tsedrag, Tsedragus) are Frankish Chronicles: Annales Regni Francorum; ARF (lot.). According to them, Ceadragus was the only son of Drazhko, Prince of Obodrites (or Bodrichi, Reregi, Rarogi people) in 809 he was not able to inherit the throne of his father, since he was ousted from the Slavomir, which was later called as his uncle by the genealogist. It is assumed that the reason for this was the young age of Ceadragus.

There are no facts known about next eight years of Ceadragus' life. For the first time his name was mentioned in contemporary historical sources was the year of 817, when the Emperor of Franks Louis I the Pious commanded Prince Slavomir to recognize Ceadragus as co-regent. Perhaps this was done at the request of the noble Obodrites who were dissatisfied with the rule of the prince. In response to that Slavomir, previously loyal vassal of emperor, concluded an anti-Franko alliance with sons of Gudfred, King of the Danes, who died in 810. This was an occasion for Louis to start a war with Obodrites, which ended in 819 by the capture of their prince. At the meeting of the state Summit in Aachen Slavomir was accused of betraying the Frankish ruler and deprived of power. New Prince for Obodrites on the orders of Louis the Pious was announced Ceadragus.

At the beginning of his reign Ceadragus showed himself as a faithful vassal to the emperor, participating on the side of the Franks in the war against Gudfred's sons, who laid claim to the throne of Jutland. However, for unknown reasons, in the year 821 Prince of Obodrites, same as his predecessor, concluded an alliance with them [Gudfred's sons], which was seen by Louis I the Pious as a waiver of vassalage. This forced the emperor to make a decision of the restoration Slavomir on the Obodrites throne who still was a prisoner at Franks court, but he died while traveling to the Obodrites' lands. This allowed Ceadragus to save his princely power.

Perhaps, after this the Franks with the assistance of the Saxons and Wiltzen (Vendes) launched military action against Obodrites. Detailed course of this war is unknown. Frankish Annals only report that in the year of 822 at the expense of the Obodrites' land the Saxon area has been expanded, and that at the battle with Obodrites the supreme prince of Wiltzen (Vendes) - Lube - was killed. As a result, Ceadragus had to send his ambassadors to the Summit of Frankish Empire, that took place in Frankfurt at the end of the year. During the summit Louis the Pious considered the mutual complaints of Obodrites and of Wiltzen (Vendes), as well the charges of treason brought against Ceadragus. By decision of the ruler of the Franks, legates were set to the prince of Obodrites, demanding that he come to the emperor at the court. Ceadragus was forced to submit and at the end of the year 823 he came to Compiegne, to the court of Louis the Pious. There the prince of Obodrites was able to drop all charges against him, he was pardoned by the Emperor "for the merits of his ancestors" and received generous gifts.

In the year of 826 revolt arose against the power of Ceadragus, the sources do not report the reasons of this revolt. According to the Frankish Annals, this same summer Obodrites delegation arrived to Louis I the Pious to Ingelheim town, they were accusing the prince of disobedience to the emperor. In mid-October Ceadragus himself also arrived there. Straddling who whose side to prefer - princeses or the rebels - Louis held Ceadragus at his castle and sent delegation to Obodrites, ​​which had to establish ruler was preferred by people. Upon return at the end of the year emperor was reported, that although Obodrites there had different opinions about who should be their prince, the majority of Slavic nobles wished for Ceadragus to return. This decided the outcome of the case - Ceadragus was confirmed as a ruler of Obodrites and Louis the Pious released him to his lands.

This report in the Frankish Annals on the hearing of Ceadragus case and emperor's decisionis the last reliable historical evidence about his life. Composed in the XVIII century in Mecklenburg genealogies of the local rulers are considered by many modern historians of low fidelity; there death of Ceadragus is dated year 830 and after that the new prince of Obodrites becomes his only son Gostomysl.

approx. 790 birth of son Gostomysl of Obodrity / Obodrite

from 809 to 819 Emigration: Denmark, a sign of reconciliation given by the father as a hostage to Danish king Godfried.

819 and 830 with title: King of Wends and Obodrites

819 Event 1: Refer to the court of Louis the Pious, to prove their right to rule in a dispute with an elected Chamber to the Prince Record: 108 462 | Tr

830 Death.


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