At the beginning of the tenth century the rulers of Germany lacked clear succession criteria. The first ruler of what was to become the Ottonian dynasty, Henry I, accepted the title of king—purportedly reluctantly—from the people in 919. Henry had to deal with the threat of usurpation, which destabilised his regime. The four successive Ottonian rulers who became emperors, crowned by the pope, attempted to emulate Charlemagne’s rule in word and deed. By the early eleventh century, the fifth Ottonian and last emperor, Henry II, operated in a more stable ruling milieu. Primogeniture had been established and, although Henry II had no children, the succession to the new Salian dynasty after his death in 1024 occurred in relative peace. This chapter examines the issues arising from such difficulties and the effect on Ottonian politics, with particular focus on the actions of the royal and imperial women of the Ottonian dynasty; they had been crucial in creating and maintaining its stability, strength, and legitimacy. Empresses Adelheid and Theophanu, Queens Edith, Matilda, and Emma, and Abbesses Mathilda, Sophia, and Adelheid were clearly accepted by contemporary chroniclers as rulers, counsellors, and negotiators. Overall, this chapter argues that Ottonian women contributed far more to the stability of the later Ottonian period by negotiation than the men, their husbands, brothers, and sons, achieved through war.