1066 to 1066
Battle of Hastings
by Something Something
The Battle of Hastings was fought on 14 October 1066 between the Norman-French army of William, the Duke of Normandy, and an English army under the Anglo-Saxon King Harold Godwinson, beginning the Norman conquest of England.
Table of Contents / Timeline
Prologue: The Normans
1065 Jan 1 -
The Normans are an ethnic group that arose from contact between Norse Viking settlers of a region in France, named Normandy after them, and indigenous Franks and Gallo-Romans. The settlements in France followed a series of raids on the French coast mainly from Denmark — although some also came from Norway and Sweden— and gained political legitimacy when the Viking leader Rollo agreed to swear fealty to King Charles III of West Francia following the Siege of Chartres in 911 AD. The intermingling of Norse settlers and native Franks and Gallo-Romans in Normandy produced an ethnic and cultural "Norman" identity in the first half of the 10th century, an identity which continued to evolve over the centuries
King Edward the Confessor dies
1066 Jan 6 -
William prepares to invade
1066 Jan 19 -
Duke William assembled a large invasion fleet and an army gathered from Normandy and the rest of France, including large contingents from Brittany and Flanders. He spent almost nine months on his preparations, as he had to construct a fleet from nothing. According to some Norman chronicles, he also secured diplomatic support. William mustered his forces at Saint-Valery-sur-Somme, and was ready to cross the English Channel by about 12 August. But the crossing was delayed, either because of unfavourable weather or to avoid being intercepted by the powerful English fleet.
Tostig raids southern England
1066 Mar 1 -
Harold prepares for William's invasion
1066 Jun 1 -
Harold Hardrada invades England
1066 Sep 1 -
Battle of Fulford
1066 Sep 20 -
The Battle of Fulford was fought on the outskirts of the village of Fulford near York in England, on 20 September 1066, when King Harald III of Norway, also known as Harald Hardrada ("harðráði" in Old Norse, meaning "hard ruler"), and Tostig Godwinson, his English ally, fought and defeated the Northern Earls Edwin and Morcar. The Norwegians occupied the York afterwards.
The Battle of Stamford Bridge
1066 Sep 25 -
Stamford Bridge, UK
1066 Sep 28 -
Before dawn on 28 September, William of Normandy sailed his invading fleet of about 700 ships at Pevensey on the Sussex coast.There were no defenders at Pevensey and the bay provided a safe haven for the invading fleet. A few ships were blown off course and landed at Romney, where the Normans fought the local fyrd. After landing, William's forces built a wooden castle at Hastings, from which they raided the surrounding area. He cut a ditch across the peninsula to isolate the ruins from the mainland and repaired the walls to create a castle. More fortifications were erected at Pevensey.
After defeating his brother Tostig and Harald Hardrada in the north, Harold left much of his forces in the north, including Morcar and Edwin, and marched the rest of his army south to deal with the threatened Norman invasion.
The Battle of Hastings
1066 Oct 14 -
Battle of Hastings
Harold stopped in London, and was there for about a week before Hastings, so it is likely that he spent about a week on his march south, averaging about 27 mi (43 km) per day, for the approximately 200 mi (320 km).
The exact numbers present at the battle are unknown as even modern estimates vary considerably. The composition of the forces is clearer: the English army was composed almost entirely of infantry and had few archers, whereas only about half of the invading force was infantry, the rest split equally between cavalry and archers. Harold appears to have tried to surprise William, but scouts found his army and reported its arrival to William, who marched from Hastings to the battlefield to confront Harold. The battle lasted from about 9 am to dusk. Early efforts of the invaders to break the English battle lines had little effect. Therefore, the Normans adopted the tactic of pretending to flee in panic and then turning on their pursuers. Harold's death, probably near the end of the battle, led to the retreat and defeat of most of his army.
William the Conqueror is crowned King of England
1066 Dec 25 -
Westminster Abbey, London, U
1067 Jan 1 -
Despite the submission of the English nobles, resistance continued for several years. There were rebellions in Exeter in late 1067, an invasion by Harold's sons in mid-1068, and an uprising in Northumbria in 1068. In 1069 William faced more troubles from Northumbrian rebels, an invading Danish fleet, and rebellions in the south and west of England. He ruthlessly put down the various risings, culminating in the Harrying of the North in late 1069 and early 1070 that devastated parts of northern England. A further rebellion in 1070 by Hereward the Wake was also defeated by the king, at Ely.
- Over the following 88 years, four Norman rulers dominated and ruled the kingdom, profoundly altering England's social, political, and physical landscape.;
- The Norman conquest was especially damaging to the Anglo-Saxon elite.
- As a result of the Norman Conquest, castles are brought in. Prior to 1066, England had around six castles; by the time William died, it had several hundred.
- The Normans also had diverse notions about architecture.
- They demolished most of the Anglo-Saxon abbeys and cathedrals and replaced them with massive new Romanesque structures. They even had opposing views on human existence.
- Within a generation or two following the conquest, the 15 to 20% of English society who had been kept as slaves were freed.
- Barlow, Frank (1988). The Feudal Kingdom of England 1042–1216 (Fourth ed.). New York: Longman. ISBN 0-582-49504-0.
- Bates, David (2001). William the Conqueror. Stroud, UK: Tempus. ISBN 0-7524-1980-3.
- Battlefields Trust. "Battle of Hastings: 14 October 1066". UK Battlefields Resource Centre. Retrieved 5 October 2016.
- Bennett, Matthew (2001). Campaigns of the Norman Conquest. Essential Histories. Oxford, UK: Osprey. ISBN 978-1-84176-228-9.
- Freeman, Edward A. (1869). The History of the Norman Conquest of England: Its Causes and Results. III. Oxford, UK: Clarendon Press. OCLC 186846557
- Marren, Peter (2004). 1066: The Battles of York, Stamford Bridge & Hastings. Battleground Britain. Barnsley, UK: Leo Cooper. ISBN 0-85052-953-0
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