Widukind or Wittekind (born about 730; died about 807) was a Saxish leader, alderman of Saxland and lead gainstander of Karl the Great through the Saxish Wars. He was the son of the Westphalish leader Warnechin and of Gunilda of Rügen. He wed Geva of Westfold (born about 770, died 800), daughter of the Danish king Goimo I and sister of the Danish kings Ragnar and Siegfried.
Widukind was the flitting might in the struggles of the Saxes for their selfhood and keeping of their beliefs handed down. Frankish writings of the Saxish Wars give only little outlines anent his being. After Karl the Great overcame the Saxes in 777, Widukind found haven with his wife's kin in Denmark. When Charles went to Spain in 778, Widukind came back and brought the uprising back to life, and the Saxes raided Frankish landships. Sundry more times Widukind had to flee, and in time Karl quelled the Saxes and laid on ghastful soreteaching at the Bloody Finding of Verden where 4,500 kinelders were said to be beheaded (new knowledge qualms these tellings; see the writ about the Verden finding for further reading.)
The bitter struggles entangled Wends and Frish as well and went on until Karl won in overreding Widukind to become Christlike. Widukind was forwashed in 785 along with many of his folk. The Pope batched an overall merrymaking of thanksgiving. Widukind took no share in further Saxish Wars. He soon became one of the great men of tales and in time kythed as a holy man and the builder of many churches. He is believed to have been buried at Enger near Herford around 808. However, the great grave in the church of Enger is not from the nineth hundredyear, and so it is qualmful if the lich inside is in truth that of Widukind.
By folklore Widukind rode a black horse before his forewashing and a white horse afterwards. The black horse is shown in the kinshield of the riding of Herford, while his white horse is shown on the flags of the North Rhine-Westphalia and Lower Saxland shires of Teutonland.
- Alderman Widukind is spoken of in the songs Niedersachsenlied and Westfalenlied.
- The Wittekindsweg on the ridge of the Wiehengebirge in Lower Saxland in North Rhine-Westfalen is named after the Saxish leader. The way begins in the east at Wittekindsberg with Wittekindsburg and the dry Widukind's Spring. A farther Wittekindsburg lies within Osnabrück's mark.
- In Vreden in West Münsterland, there is a Widukind Gamehall, as well as a Widukind Leechmiddles
- The yearly Wittekindspende in Enger is said to come from a feeding of the needy that goes back to the Saxish alderman.
- The Sattelmeier in Ravensberger Land are said to be the afterbears of Widukind's trothen followers.
- Widukind is a Netherlandish brotherhood in Nijmegen which was founded in 1945.