Phase 10 - Harold returns

Harold marches back with his Huscarls to London and gathers his forces.

Anglo Saxon History

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Map Position

This map shows the position of locations containing 'battleAD1066, vikingAD1066' centered on Peterborough in City Of Peterborough.

Map Logic

This map shows the area around Battle and Hastings in 1066.

Roman roads are shown as black lines, red lines show old Roman Ridge trackways and purple lines show theoretical Roman roads implied by village and road names.

The thickness of the road implies the width of the Roman metalled surface.

The sea level is shown raised by 5 metres to accomodate the high tide level changes since 1066 see our Sea Level page.

The green shaded area shows what we believe is the area of the impassible Forest of Andredsweald.


 
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Phase 10 - Harold returns
Harold marches back with his Huscarls to London and gathers his forces.
This page shows the documentary evidence from translated original documents


Anglo Saxon Chronicles

William, however, came against him unawares, ere his army was collected; but the king, nevertheless, very hardly encountered him with the men that would support him: and there was a great slaughter made on either side.

Battle Abbey Chronicles

Harold, the usurper of the kingdom, hearing of his arrival, quickly collected his army, resolved upon driving out the duke, or rather upon utterly destroying him and his, and marched forward, with great boldness and expedition, to the place which is now called Battel, where the duke, surrounded by his battalions of cavalry, met him courageously.

Bayeux_Tapestry

No reference to this subject in this document.

Carmen de Triumpho Normannico

The king returned from war laden with rich spoils
The messenger, coming up with him, spread this before the ranks
The Duke of Normandy with Gauls and Bretons
He is laying waste and putting to the torch
He summond the dukes, counts and nobles of the land
Through you we conquered the enemy who Norway sent
Of like importance , we have laid low
Him who suckled milk at my mothers own teat
You my elite guard and militia
Hear that the Normans invade our Kingdom
Presently a battle cry arose that struck the stars
We spoil for war rather than place our necks under the yokeMbr>

Florence of Worcester

Thereupon the king led his army towards London by forced marches ; and, although he was very sensible that some of the bravest men in England had fallen in the two [recent] battles, and that one half of his troops was not yet assembled, he did not hesitate to meet the enemy in Sussex, without loss of time ; and on Saturday, the eleventh of the calends of November [22nd October], before a third of his army was in fighting order, he gave them battle at a place nine miles from Hastings, where they had built a fort.

Henry of Huntingdon

Harold, king of England, returned to York the same day, with great triumph. But while he was at dinner, a messenger arrived with the news that William, duke of Normandy, had landed on the south coast and had built a fort at Hastings.

Master Wace

Harold came full speed to London, ordering that from every part of England all should come forthwith, fully equipped, by a time appointed them, without allowing any excuse except sickness. He would have challenged the duke, and at once fixed a day for the battle, but he waited till his great baronage should come together : and they came in haste on receiving the summons.

The duke soon heard that Harold was assembling a great host, and that he was come to London from the north, where he had killed his brother Tosti.

William of Jumièges/Orderic Vitalis(Gesta)

For his intrepidity was dauntless, and his conduct of affairs admirable, while his personal strength was great, his presence commanding, and he had the arts of a persuasive eloquence, and of a courtesy which endeared him to his supporters. Still his mother Githa, who was much afflicted by the death of her son Tostig, and his other faithful friends, dissuaded him from engaging in battle with the Normans; his brother, Earl Gurth, thus addressing him: 'It is best, dearest brother and lord, that your courage should be tempered by discretion. You are worn by the conflict with the Norwegians from which you are only just come, and you are in eager haste to give battle to the Normans. Allow yourself, I pray you, some time for rest. Reflect also, in your wisdom, on the oath you have taken to the duke of Normandy. Beware of incurring the guilt of perjury, lest by so great a crime you draw ruin on yourself and the forces of this nation, and stain for ever the honour of our own race. For myself, I am bound by no oaths, I am under no obligations to Count William. I am therefore in a position to fight with him undauntedly in defence of our native soil. But do you, my brother, rest awhile in peace, and wait the issue of the contest, that so the liberty which is the glory of England, may not be ruined by your fall.' Harold was very indignant at this speech. Holding in contempt the wholesome advice of his friends, he loaded his brother with reproaches for his faithful counsel, and even forgot himself so far as to kick his mother when she hung about him in her too great anxiety to detain him with her. For six days Harold sent forth the summons to call the people to arms from all quarters, and, having assembled vast numbers of the English, he led them by forced marches against the enemy.

William of Malmesbury

Harold, elated by his successful enterprise, vouchsafed no part of the spoil to his soldiers. Wherefore many, as they found opportunity, stealing away, deserted the king, as he was proceeding to the battle of Hastings.



External References in no particular order :-
Original Manuscripts of the Anglo Saxon Chronicles
Online Anglo Saxon dictionary
Online Etymology dictionary
Open Domesday Book - The first free online copy of the Domesday Book
The Ermine Street Guard Roman re-enactment and research Society
The "Kent A" cadastre - page 5 - Peterson 2002
Archaeologia Cantiana Online
Romney Marsh Research Trust
Romney Marsh the Fifth Continent
VillageNet the reference guide to villages in Kent & Sussex
Global warming Flood Maps
The Anglo Saxon Chronicles
Google Maps - the core of the system
GeoPlaner - Useful site for plotting map data
Julius Caesar's Gallic Wars 55BC(Books 4 & 5)
Wikipedia - Caesar's invasions of Britain
Wikipedia - Portus Istus
The Geography of Claudius Ptolemy (Bill Thayers)
Roman Britain.org
Runetree Beowulf
Bayeux Tapestry Online
The Secrets of the Norman Invasion
Chronicles of John of Worcester
Battle Historic Society
Binsted village website(Mearcredesburnan Steðe)

 

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Author: Simon M - Last Updated: 15/01/2019 17:45
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