Jewna of Polotsk was born circa 1280 in Polotsk, Vitsebsk Voblast, Belarus to Troyden Romanovich Polemonovich (c1263-1282) and died circa 1344 Vilnius, Lithuania of unspecified causes.

Jewna (Lithuanian: Jaunė, literally, young woman; died ca. 1344) was daughter of Prince Troyden Polemonovich and wife of Gediminas, the Grand Duke of Lithuania, Ruthenia and Samogitia (1316–1341). She is mentioned in written sources only once – the Bychowiec Chronicle, a late and unreliable source. Therefore some historians cast a serious doubt on her existence, but modern reference works still widely cite her as the ancestress of the Gediminids dynasty.

There are considerable doubts about how many wives Gediminas had. The Bychowiec Chronicle mentions three wives: Vida from Courland, Olga from Smolensk, and Jewna.[1] Some modern historians suggest that Gediminas had two wives, one from local pagan nobles, and Jewna, an Orthodox. S. C. Rowell claims that Gediminas had only one wife, an unknown pagan duchess. He argues that an important marriage to a Ruthenian or Polish princess like Jewna would have been noted in contemporary sources.[2]

The Bychowiec Chronicle mentions that after Jewna's death, brothers Algirdas and Kęstutis became displeased with Jaunutis, who Gediminas chose as his heir. Soon they deposed of Jaunutis. This episode is interpreted that weak Jaunutis was protected by his mother. If such interpretation was accurate, then it would testify the power and influence of queen mother in pagan Lithuania.[3][4]


  1. ^ (Lithuanian) Ivinskis, Zenonas (1953–1966). "Jaunė". Lietuvių enciklopedija. IX. Boston, Massachusetts: Lietuvių enciklopedijos leidykla. p. 335. LCCWp globe tiny.gif 55020366. 
  2. ^ Rowell, S.C. (1994). Lithuania Ascending: A Pagan Empire Within East-Central Europe, 1295-1345. Cambridge Studies in Medieval Life and Thought: Fourth Series. Cambridge University Press. p. 88. ISBN 9780521450119. 
  3. ^ Rowell, S.C. Lithuania Ascending, p. 282
  4. ^ Jewna [1]


Offspring of Jewna of Polotsk and Gediminas (c1275-1341)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Algirdas (1296-1377) 1296 Lithuania May 1377 Maišiagala Maria Yaroslavna of Vitebsk (c1300-c1348) Maria Yaroslavna of Vitebsk (c1300-c1348) Uliana Aleksandrovna of Tver (c1325-1392)
Kęstutis (c1297-1382) 1297 15 August 1382 Kreva, Grodno Region, Belarus Unknown Unknown Birutė of Palanga (c1320-1382)
Jaunutis (1298-1366) 1298 1366
Maria of Lithuania (1300-1349) 1300 1349 Dmitri Mikhailovich of Tver (1299-1326)
Elzbieta of Lithuania (1302-c1364) 1302 1364 Wenceslaus of Płock (c1293-1336)
Manvydas of Lithuania (c1304–1348) 1304 2 February 1348
Narimantas (c1306-1348) 1306 2 February 1348 Anna-Yelizaveta Vasilkovna (c1307-1345) Anna-Yelizaveta Vasilkovna (c1307-1345) Mariya Ordynskaya (1313-c1360)
Karijotas (c1307-c1361
Aldona of Lithuania (c1309-1339) 1309 26 May 1339 Casimir III the Great of Poland (1310-1370)
Liubartas of Lithuania (c1310-1383))
Eufemija of Lithuania
Aigusta of Lithuania (c1320-1345) 1320 11 March 1345 Simeon Ivanovich of Moscow (1316-1353)


Footnotes (including sources)