Gisela of Hungary

Blessed Gisela

Portrayal of Queen Gisela on the Hungarian coronation pall from 1031
Queen of Hungary
Tenure 1000 or 1001–1038
Grand Princess of the Hungarians
Tenure c. 997 – 1000 or 1001
Born c. 985
Died 7 May 1065
Passau, Germany
Burial Veszprém, Hungary
Spouse Stephen I of Hungary
Issue Otto
Saint Emeric
Dynasty Árpád dynasty
Ottonian dynasty
Father Henry II, Duke of Bavaria
Mother Gisela of Burgundy
Religion Roman Catholic
King St Stephen and his wife
King Stephen and Queen blessed Gisela founding a church at Óbuda from the Chronicon Pictum

Blessed Gisela of Hungary (or Gisele, Gizella and of Bavaria; 985 – 7 May 1065) was the wife of Saint Stephen of Hungary, making her the first queen consort of Hungary, and the sister of Henry II, Holy Roman Emperor.


Gisela was a daughter of Henry II, Duke of Bavaria and Gisela of Burgundy. Gisela was raised very devout, most likely with bishop Wolfgang of Regensburg as her mentor and governor. She married King Stephen I of Hungary in 996[1] as a part of Hungary's policy of opening up to the West. The couple had a son, Saint Emeric, who died on 2 September 1031, while hunting boar.[2] The wedding of Stephen and Gisela marked a turning point in Hungary's history.

Queen Gisela played a fundamental role in spreading the Christian faith and the Western Culture in Hungary.[1]

When Edmund Ironside of England died, he was succeeded by Cnut. Edmund’s infant sons were sent abroad and ended up under the protection of King Stephen of Hungary. One of the twins died young, but the other, Edward Atheling, was brought up as a protégé of Queen Gisela, and regarded in that foreign Court as the heir to the Anglo-Saxon throne.[3]

King Stephen died in 1038. In 1046 Gisela, her attendants, and a number of many Bavarian settlers left Hungary to return to Bavaria, where she joined Niederburg convent in Passau and became the abbess.[1]

She lived in the nunnery of Niedernburg in Passau, where she died. Her grave is a well-known holy place.

Her canonisation was attempted in the 18th century but failed. She was declared Blessed in 1975.

Her memorial days are May 7 and February 1.

Gisela and her husband were not buried together, and nearly a thousand years later on May 4, 1996 their bodies as well as their spirits were reunited. They preserved the remains of King Stephen’s right hand and it was brought back together with a bone taken from the arm of Gisela. Both are now safely protected in glass and gold cases and are now displayed in the basilica in the western Hungarian town of Veszprém, where Gisela once lived.

The cross was commissioned by Queen Gisela for the tomb of her mother, who died in 1006 and was buried in the Niedermünster in Regensburg.


Blessed Gisela is depicted on a white limestone panel by Hungarian artist Sandor Kiss on the wall of the Chapel of Our Lady – Queen of Hungary in St. Peter's Basilica, Rome.[4]




Wikimedia Commons has media related to Giselle of Bavaria.
Gisela of Hungary
Born: c. 980 Died: 2 August 1058
Royal titles
Preceded by
Grand Princess of the Hungarians
997–1000 or 1001
Herself as Queen
Herself as Grand Princess Queen consort of Hungary
1000 or 1001–1038
Succeeded by
Next confirmed: Anastasia of Kiev
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