2017-06-17 04:54:08 UTC
In a 2016 article available here:
Elena Yasynetska proposed that Maria-Dobronega, the wife of Kasimir I
the Restorer, duke of Poland, was a daughter of St Boris (a son of St
Vladimir the Great, prince of Kiev). Incidentally it was suggested that
Agatha may have been a sister of Maria-Dobronega.
The name Agatha is traced back to the family of the Byzantine emperor
Romanos Lekapenos, along with St Boris' baptismal name Roman, through
the latter's mother who is identified as a daughter of Boris II of
Bulgaria (a great-grandson of Romanos).
The wife of St Boris, the putative mother of Agatha and Maria-Dobronega,
is supposed to have been descended from emperor Otto I and his English
wife Eadgyth, through their son Liudolf and his conjectured daughter
Richlind, duchess of Swabia.
I think this is far-fetched, but then there is probably nowhere left
except far to fetch another Agatha hypothesis from.
St Boris is known to have married at a young age, not long before he and
his brother St Gleb were killed, usually placed in 1015 (but possibly in
1017 according to Yasynetska).
The hypothesis relies heavily on onomastics and also on a rather forced
interpretation of a passage in a 13th-century Polish chronicle, stating
that Maria-Dobronega was daughter of the Russian prince Roman son of
Odo/Otto ("Kazimirus ... duxit uxorem, filiam Romani principis Russiae
filii Odonis nomine Dobronegam, alias dictam Maria"). Yasynetska thinks
that Boris-Roman was described as "son of Odo/Otto" as the husband of a
descendant of the emperor. She suggests that the connection to St Boris
was "carefully hushed up" due to embarrassment by Roman Catholics about
descent from an Eastern Orthodox saint. However, in my view this is
highly unlikely as the official line was that saints from before the
Great Schism (and indeed Russian saints from afterwards) were acceptable
in the West.