Erik Lam had renounced the crown in 1146, the Zealanders elected Erik
Emune’s son Svend, and the Jutlanders elected Magnus’s son Knud. Skånerne
mostly agreed with Svend.
On Svend’s side stood Knud Lavard’s young son Valdemar, who was born 8
days after the murder of his father, and grown up at Asser Rig, together
with his sons Esbern and Absolon.
The long lasting war between the two kings ruined Denmark, and the Venders
plunderings added to the misfortune. Svend won the fight for the crown,
and was for many years the sole king, until Valdemar reconciled with Knud
and became engaged to his pretty halfsister Sofie.
When Knud and Valdemar rebelled, Svend had to leave Denmark and seek for
help in Germany.
After he came back with a large army, the other kings accepted a
compromice, by which Denmark was divided into three kingdoms.
When after some time a settlement gathering was hold in the kings castle
in Roskilde, known as “The blood-party in Roskilde”, Svend, however,
tried to get rid of Knud and Valdemar.
They were attacked by armed men, and they themselves had brought no
weapons to the party, and had only their bare hands to defend themselves.
Knud was killed, but badly hurt Valdemar succeeded in escaping and went to
Jutland, where he gathered a large peasant-army.
Svend followed together with his army, but lost in the fight with the
peasant-army. After the fight Svend was killed by a peasant at Grathe Hede
(Heath) by Viborg (1157).
Svend got the name Grathe from the place, where he died.
Valdemar was now acclaimed sole-king.
Svend Grathe was son of Erik Emune and his mistress Thunna.
In 1152 he was married to Edel, daughter of count Konrad of Wettin and