Saint Erik IX, King of SwedenErik IX, King of Sweden, is 26th great grandfather of my children on their father’s side.

The odd thing about this ancestry is that it is not through my husband’s mother’s Swedish ancestry, but through his father’s Welsh, and Royal ancestors.

Saint Erik "the Saint, den Helige" Jedvardsson IX, King of SwedenKeeping in mind the quality of sources going back that far, I have sourced this line through the best, highly regarded sites available to researchers, such as Foundation for Medieval Genealogy and the Directory of Royal Genealogy of Hull University, among others.

Today, I read a USAToday story about scientists opening the coffin of Erik IX, King of Sweden, who was murdered near Uppsala, Sweden in 1160. The identity of the murderer of Erik is speculation, one possibility being Emund Olvbane, an assassin, and another being Magnus Henriksson, who some say succeeded Erik IX briefly. Erik was made a saint later in his life.

There is excitement surrounding the ability to study King Erik’s bones because there is so little known about him. They will be using DNA and x-rays to examine and investigate, hoping to learn details about his ancestry, health, diet and residence locations. There has been disagreement over his place of origin, some believing he was from Uppsala, and some believing he was from the west coast.

Uppsala CathedralEvidence of a sword strike has been noted and may have contributed to his death. Some believe he died from a blow to the head, while others  believe he was captured and later beheaded. Either of these theories is plausible because of the mark on the collar bone from a sword. Hopefully, these studies will provide answers.

Among artifacts to be studied is the gilded copper crown adorned with semi-precious stones, worn by Erik and being the oldest existing medieval royal crown in existence.

The crown of Erik IX, King of Sweden, will go on exhibit at the Uppsala Cathedral in June, along with several artifacts from other churches. Uppsala Cathedral is believed to have been built to house the remains of King Erik IX.