John I, Duke of Saxony
Duke John I of Saxony was the elder son of Duke Albert I of Saxony
Albert I, Duke of Saxony
Albert I was a Duke of Saxony, Angria, and Westphalia; Lord of Nordalbingia; Count of Anhalt; and Prince-elector and Archmarshal of the Holy Roman Empire...

 and his third wife Helen of Brunswick and Lunenburg, a daughter of Otto the Child. John and his younger brother Albert II
Albert II, Duke of Saxony
Albert II of Saxony was a son of Duke Albert I of Saxony and his third wife Helen of Brunswick and Lunenburg, a daughter of Otto the Child. He supported Rudolph I of Germany at his election as Roman king and became his son-in-law...

 jointly ruled the Duchy of Saxony
Duchy of Saxony
The medieval Duchy of Saxony was a late Early Middle Ages "Carolingian stem duchy" covering the greater part of Northern Germany. It covered the area of the modern German states of Bremen, Hamburg, Lower Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia, and Saxony-Anhalt and most of Schleswig-Holstein...

 after the death of their father Albert I in 1260.


In 1269, 1272 and 1282 the brothers gradually divided their governing competences within the three territorially unconnected Saxon areas (one called Land of Hadeln around Otterndorf
Otterndorf is a town on the coast of the North Sea in the region of Lower Saxony, Germany, and is part of the Samtgemeinde Land Hadeln . The town is at the mouth of the river Medem on part of the Elbe delta in the district Cuxhaven...

, another around Lauenburg upon Elbe
Lauenburg/Elbe is a town in the state of Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. It is situated at the northern bank of the river Elbe, east of Hamburg. It is the southernmost town of Schleswig-Holstein. Lauenburg belongs to the Kreis of Herzogtum Lauenburg and had a population of 11,900 as of 2002...

 and the third around Wittenberg), thus preparing a partition. As part of this arrangement John I became Burgrave of Magdeburg
Magdeburg , is the largest city and the capital city of the Bundesland of Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. Magdeburg is situated on the Elbe River and was one of the most important medieval cities of Europe....

 in 1269.
In the imperial election in 1273 Albert II represented the jointly ruling brothers. John I resigned in 1282 in favour of his three minor sons Eric I, John II and Albert III. Later John I entered the Franciscan monastery in Wittenberg, becoming its warden
A churchwarden is a lay official in a parish church or congregation of the Anglican Communion, usually working as a part-time volunteer. Holders of these positions are ex officio members of the parish board, usually called a vestry, parish council, parochial church council, or in the case of a...

 (guardian), which position he held until he died. John I's sons and their uncle Albert II continued the joint rule in Saxony, with the sons entering into the government on growing major. The last document, mentioning Albert II with his nephews as Saxon fellow dukes dates back to 1295.

Marriage and issue

In 1270 John married Ingeborg Birgersdotter of Småland (*ca. 1253–30 June 1302*, Mölln
Molln is a municipality in the district of Kirchdorf an der Krems in Upper Austria, Austria.-References:...

), a daughter or grandchild of Birger jarl
Birger jarl
, or Birger Magnusson, was a Swedish statesman, Jarl of Sweden and a member of the House of Bjelbo, who played a pivotal role in the consolidation of Sweden. Birger also led the Second Swedish Crusade, which established Swedish rule in Finland. Additionally, he is traditionally attributed to have...

, making her one of the Saxon consorts. They had eight children, among them the following:
  • Helen of Saxony, Angria and Westphalia (*ca. 1272–1337*), married with (1) Count Günther IX of Schwarzburg-Blankenburg (*?–1289*), (2) in ca. 1297 Count Adolphus VI of Schauenburg and Holstein-Pinneberg
  • Elisabeth of Saxony, Angria and Westphalia (*ca. 1274– before 1306*), married in 1287 with Duke Valdemar IV of Sleswick
    Valdemar IV, Duke of Schleswig
    Valdemar IV Eriksøn was Duke of Schleswig from 1283 until his death in 1312. He was the eldest son of Duke Eric I of Schleswig and Margaret of Rugia.-Early life:At the death of his father Duke Eric I in 1272, Valdemar was only about 10 years old...

    , son of Eric I of Sleswick
    Eric I, Duke of Schleswig
    Eric I Abelsøn was Duke of Schleswig from 1260 until his death in 1272. He was the second son of King Abel of Denmark, Duke of Schleswig and Mechtild of Holstein.-Early life:...

  • Eric I of Saxony, Angria and Westphalia (*1280/1282–1359/1361*)
  • John II of Saxony, Angria and Westphalia (*ca. 1275–22 April 1321*)
  • Albert III of Saxony, Angria and Westphalia (*ca. 1281–October 1308*)
  • Sophia of Saxony, Angria and Westphalia (*?–13 December 1319*), prioress in Plötzkau
    Plötzkau is a municipality in the district of Salzlandkreis, in Saxony-Anhalt, Germany....


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