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Odd Deaths in the Middle Ages I

History tells us that there are plenty of gruesome ways to die , some intentionally created as an ancient punishment, while others are simply bad luck. In this article, you will learn of the odd deaths that took the lives of such historic figures as Henry I of England and other members of royalty.

Prince Popiel

During the 9th century, Prince Popiel (who either belonged to the Goplans or Polans tribe) was eaten alive by mice when he was held in a tower in Kruszwica. Another story that ends with death by mice involves the Archbishop Hatto II of Mainz who died in what was referred to as the Mouse Tower. It was believed that this unfortunate end came when you disregarded traditions or was not a hospitable individual.

Sigurd the Mighty

It’s bad enough to die of an infection, but the way Mael Brigte and most significantly, Sigurd the Mighty met his end was truly horrific. Sigurd the Mighty of Orkney was the second Viking Earl of Orkney, who succeeded his brother in taking control of his people. Sigurd was also the leader of a Viking conquest that took place in what is now known as northern Scotland. Sigurd had strapped the head of Mael Brigte (one of his enemies) to his saddle as a trophy of his triumph. However, as he rode forward, the teeth of his enemy grazed against his leg , causing a wound to form. Unfortunately, the wound became infected and Sigurd died in 892 as a result.

Bela I of Hungary

In 1063, Bela I of Hungary (also known as Bela the Bison or Bela the Champion) died when the canopy over his throne collapsed on top of him. Bela I was King of Hungary from 1060 until his death after he descended from a younger branch of the Arpad dynasty. During his life, he spend 17 years in exile, but later returned to Hungary at the request of his brother, King Andrew I. Bela was assigned to a government position that gave him one third of the kingdom. Bela was also proclaimed as the heir to the throne.

Henry I of England

The favorite meal of Henry I of England was the cause of his death, as he died of food poisoning after eating his fill of lampreys , jawless fish that resemble an eel. Henry was the fourth son of William I of England and succeeded his older brother William II as the King of England in 1100. During his reign, he is known for establishing a period of peace and prosperity for England and Normandy. He also made sure that judicial and financial reforms were put into place. Henry died in 1135.