About St Adelaide Image

St Adelaide of Italy, also known as St Adelaide of Burgundy, was Holy Roman Empress to Emperor Otto the Great during the tenth century. She endured many intrigues against her rule, including from her own family members, but she remained faithful throughout her life and reconciled with family members prior to her death.

Read the full St Adelaide novena on the novena page. You can also learn more about novenas here.

Is Adelaide a Saint?

Adelaide was born in 931 AD at Orbe Castle in the Kingdom of Upper Burgundy (Switzerland), to a royal family.

At age 15 she was married to Lothair II to help secure his rule in Italy and Upper Burgundy.

Their daughter, Emma, went on to become Queen of West Francia.

In 950 AD, Adelaide’s husband was poisoned by Berengar II, who wanted sole control over Italy for himself.

He tried to force Adelaide to marry his son, but she refused, fled, but was captured and imprisoned for four months before escaping.

Adelaide requested help from Otto I, the King of the Franks in the East, and he married her in 951. They had two sons, but both died in childhood.

Liudolf was Otto’s son by his first wife, and Liudolf attempted a coup against his father, but it was put down, strengthening Adelaide’s and Otto’s rule.

Adelaide gave birth of Otto II in 955 and then a daughter, Matilda, who would go on to become an abbess later in life.

Otto was crowned Holy Roman Emperor on February 2nd, 962 by Pope John XII, and then the pope crowned Adelaide as Holy Roman Empress, which was a novelty at the time.

Otto died in 973 AD, and at that time their son, Otto II, challenged Adelaide and they had a falling out. Otto’s Byzantine princess wife, Theophano, was said to have instigated the quarrel, pushing Adelaide aside.

St Adelaide later in her life established many monasteries and churches

She and Otto II reconciled prior to his death in 983. She then became the regent for her grandson, Otto III.

St Adelaide died on December 16th, 999, at the convent at Seltz in Alsace.

She was canonized in 1097 by Pope Urban II.

So yes, St Adelaide is indeed a saint!