Absalon äp´sälôn [key] or Axel äk´səl [key], c.1128–1201, Danish churchman, archbishop of Lund (1178–1201). He had great influence on political affairs under Waldemar I and Canute VI, warred against the pagan Wends, and in 1184 won a naval victory over Bogislav, duke of Pomerania. He attempted monastic reforms, introduced canon law into Denmark, and was patron of Svend Aagesen and Saxo Grammaticus. In 1167, Absalon was in charge of fortifying Copenhagen.
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