m. ABT 990
Facts and Events
Conrad II (c. 990 – 4 June 1039), also known as Conrad the Elder, was Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire from 1027 until his death in 1039. The founder of the Salian dynasty of emperors, Conrad also served as King of Germany from 1024, King of Italy from 1026, and King of Burgundy from 1033.
The son of a mid-level nobleman in Franconia, Count Henry of Speyer and Adelaide of Alsace, he inherited the titles of count of Speyer and of Worms as an infant when his father died. Conrad extended his power beyond his inherited lands, receiving the favor of the princes of the Kingdom of Germany. When the Saxon-based Ottonian dynasty of emperors died off with the childless Emperor Henry II, Conrad was elected to succeed him as King in 1024 at the age of 34. Conrad founded his own dynasty of rulers, known as the Salian dynasty, which ruled the Holy Roman Empire for over a century.
Conrad continued the policies and achievements of the Ottonian Henry II regarding the Catholic Church and the affairs of Italy. Conrad continued to build the Church as a center for imperial power, preferring to appoint church bishops over secular lords to important posts across the Empire. Like Henry II before him, Conrad also continued a policy of benign neglect over Italy, especially for the city of Rome. His reign marked a high point of the medieval imperial rule and a relatively peaceful period for the Empire. Following the death of the childish King Rudolph III of Burgundy in 1032, Conrad claimed dominion over the Kingdom of Arles and incorporated it into the Empire. The three kingdoms (Germany, Italy, and Burgundy) formed the basis of the Empire as the "royal triad" (regna tria).