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1066 The Saxon Times

Published by History Walks Talks and Books, 2019-02-13 13:27:34

Description: When King Edward the Confessor died in January 1066 nobody could have foreseen the year of bloodshed that would take place.
Under the leadership of Harold Godwinson, Dux Angolurum, England was at peace but Edward’s death and King Harold’s coronation set the country into a tumultuous spiral of battles and invasions, treachery and duplicity that ultimately the cost King Harold the throne of England.
The Saxon Times is a look at how the events of 1066 may have been reported by a contemporary English Newspaper and takes a very different look at 1066 through the eyes of The Saxon Times reporters.
The Saxon Times review of 1066 starts at the consecration of West Minster Abbey, in December 1065, and ends on New Year’s Eve 1066 with the new King ‘hiding’ in a nunnery in Barking.
The Saxon Times is an historically accurate resource that has been written to inform and entertain and has been much commended for its unique view of life in 1066 and the events that changed England forever.

Keywords: 1066,The Saxon Times,Norman Conquest,King Harold II,Duke William of Normandy,Battle of Hastings,David Clarke


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The Saxon Times 0

The Saxon Times 1066 The Saxon Times By David Clarke A look at how the events of 1066 may have been reported With a little interference from the Normans 1

The Saxon Times Also written by David Clarke LONG DISTANCE WALKS The Guide to Walking 1066 Harold’s Way Walking the High Weald (sub titled Three Castles and an Ironmaster’s House) SHORT WALKS IN 1066 COUNTRY A Green St Leonards Walk Walks Around Battle 1066 Bodiam Castle to Battle Abbey Walking Hastings to Rye, Rye to Hastings Secret St Leonards Pub Walks in Hastings and St Leonards 1066 William’s Way – Hastings Castle to Battle Abbey Rock a Nore to De La Warr Pub Walks in 1066 Country More Walks Around Rye A Walk Around Rye A Walk Around Winchelsea 2

The Saxon Times DISCLAIMERS ASK BROTHER EALDRED Statements made in The Saxon Times, regarding the advice on herbal and natural remedies, are sourced from the ‘Lacnunga’, a collection of miscellaneous Anglo- Saxon medical texts and prayers. The advice given by Brother Ealdred is for information purposes only, it is not meant to be a substitute for medical advice or diagnosis provided by your doctor or other medical professionals. Do not use Brother Ealdred’s advice to diagnose, treat or cure any illness or health condition. If you have, or suspect that you have a medical problem, contact your doctor or health care provider. THE FOOD SECTION The recipes in The Saxon Times are the result of research from a variety of sources. They are meant to be a representative menu of the food served to Duke William of Normandy and are for information only. No cooking times, temperatures, weights or measures have been given on purpose. Recipes taken from The Saxon Times and prepared by you are done so ‘at your own risk’. The Saxon Times and David Clarke are not responsible for any damage, medically or otherwise, resulting in the preparation of food using the instructions or recipes provided. David Clarke has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1998 to be identified as the author of this work. The Saxon Times Text, maps and drawings are Copyright ©David Clarke 1/3/2014 All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted without the prior consent of the author. First published by Bretwalda Books This edition published by History Walks, St Leonards on Sea, East Sussex Printed by Pixartprint 3

The Saxon Times cknowledgments To Stefi Thank You And of course, to King Harold II For without you this paper would never have seen the light of day. 4

The Saxon Times ntroduction I would like to thank my good friend William of Poitiers for all his help and support in writing this newspaper, he was a valuable source of information and privy to most of the decisions of Duke William himself. William of Jumièges also proved to be a reasonably reliable source although he was limited in his capacity to travel because of his great age. Our discussions about the events of the day and their jottings and scribblings served me well when it came to write up my copy. I wish them both every success when they both come to write up their books on ‘The Deeds of Duke William’. Despite keeping ‘immaculate’ records for both King Harold and Duke William there is occasionally some confusion as to the actual day or dates when these tumultuous events occurred. Everybody seemed to work to a different calendar and sometimes there was a discrepancy or difference of opinion for which I apologise. Even the best of us can forget which day it is! I must also thank my colleagues who followed the campaigns of King Harold and Duke William, sometimes in great personal danger. Alfgar of Peterborough and Eadgar of West Minster were given leave of absence from their monasteries to record the events of 1066 for posterity. Eadgar became Court Correspondent and Alfgar followed the northern campaigns before we all joined up together at the Battle of Senlac Hill. I do hope that you enjoy reading The Saxon Times. We will not see the like of it again. Eadwine of Christ Church, Canterbury Editor The Saxon Times 1060 to 1066 31 December 1066 st The Saxon Times reporters are: The Editor Brother Eadwine of Canterbury Chief Reporter Brother Ethelred of Shaftsbury Royal Correspondent Brother Eadgard of West Minster Political Editor Brother Cenred of Ely Foreign Correspondent Brother Wilfrid of Steyning Science Correspondent Brother Godric of Rochester Northern Reporter Brother Alfgar of York Chief Wessex Reporter Brother Kenward of Winchester Wessex Reporters Brother Osmund of Rochester Brother Wilfrid of Steyning Health and Well-being Brother Ealdred of Malmsbury Food and Drink Brother Deorwine of Canterbury 5

The Saxon Times There is no doubt that King Edward, the Confessor, has been good for England. He has led this country well, is popular with all his subjects and he will leave us all with memories of his virtue and of his devotion to religion. Militarily, he has had to rely on Wessex to maintain power but we have all enjoyed the benefit of comparative peace in our time. However, his death may create a power vacuum WEST MINSTER ABBEY THE BACKGROUND TO unless a strong leader steps CONSECRATED THE NEW ABBEY forward to become King. Court Correspondent Our pious Edward, in We are all aware of his Eadgar of West Minster exile in Normandy before he childlessness and there has Twenty years after the acceded to the English been criticism of the King in King first commissioned the throne, dreamed of making certain quarters, over his building of a new abbey at a pilgrimage to Jerusalem indecision as to who will Thorney Island, the West but events in England succeed him. Minster Abbey was finally postponed such plans. Sources close to the King consecrated yesterday. Thrust into the indicate that there are three The crowds that lined the responsibility of Kingship, candidates who all believe streets, around the new at a time of great unrest in that they have the right of Abbey and the Royal Palace England, the pilgrimage was accession and a valid claim on what should have been a to the throne. day of great rejoicing, were THE KING GROWS much subdued. WEAKER King Edward, known and However, as King Edward loved throughout the land grows weaker by the day, as ‘The Confessor’, did not and without an heir to attend the ceremony. succeed him, the We understand, from a achievements of Harold Court bulletin, that the Godwinson cannot be King’s health had been abandoned. overlooked. failing for some time and Instead, and in lieu of his His successes in the yesterday he was too ill to pilgrimage, King Edward defence of the Realm have walk the short distance from arranged with Pope raised him to a position of the Royal Palace. Benedict IX to build a such eminence that only his Rumours ran swiftly Cathedral church just a few deficiency of royal blood can through the crowds that his miles west of London. stand between him and the illness seemed to be more It was to be London’s new throne. serious than first thought. West Minster and dedicated Inside sources close to to St Peter but it would not the King appear to be greatly be completed for close to 20 concerned and some believe years. that the King may not have POLITICAL COMMENT long to live. There is little doubt GOD BLESS THE KING. amongst the Court that these are the last days of King Edward the Confessor. 6

The Saxon Times A Death Wish Witan and I will leave you to draw your own conclusions Today’s Court Bulletin as to the likelihood that Earl confirms the continued Harold will be crowned the concern for the health of next King of England King Edward the Confessor. WHO ARE THE WITAN? His wife Edith, who is The Witan is ‘the great Harold Godwinson’s sister, council of the wise’ and has and Harold Godwinson always acted in harmony himself have both been a with King Edward as the constant at his bedside. king of an Anglo-Saxon According to those close England. I would hope that to Harold, King Edward this venerable institution spoke to Earl Godwinson of will continue to do so with his fears for the future and the next King. said; \"I commend my wife It is a purely aristocratic and all my kingdom to your council and comprises the care\". various members of the There has been no formal royal family, Anglo-Saxon statement from the Palace to nobility as well as the confirm or deny the King’s bishops and abbots of the words but it is quite possible major monasteries. that they will influence the WITAN MEET Witan in their decision as to TO CONFIRM THE the succession. SUCCESSION With these fateful words, It normally meets two or we now all fear that the three times a year and on King’s days are numbered. great state occasions such COMMENT as the consecration of the ALLEGIANCES & West Minster Abbey. The ALLIANCES Witan are also instrumental I would point out that in the confirmation of a new many of the assembled monarch. nobles and the church These thirty to forty IMPORTERS & EXPORTERS representatives owe their members of the Anglo- We import herb, spices, pepper, wine positions of wealth and Saxon nobility, that make and other goods from the Continent. power to Harold Godwinson, up The Witan are already Our ships travelling as far as Earl of Wessex. assembled in London and in Byzantium to bring you the most Harold has also let it be view of the King’s health will unusual goods and spices. known that his marriage to stay in the capital should it Edith, also known as be necessary to nominate We export English wool, to Europe, Ealdgyth and the daughter the next King of England. which is much in demand. of Ælfgar, Earl of Mercia, RIGHTFUL HEIR IGNORED For all your import and export needs has created a unique The rightful heir to the visit alliance. By this marriage, throne is Edgar the Willamar & Willamar, Harold Godwinson has Ætheling who is only ten Queenhythe, London succeeded in a powerful years old but, in view of the union of Wessex with both Tomorrow’s Special Edition, Mercia and Northumbria. It parlous state of the realm, it The Saxon Times will bring unites almost the whole of is unlikely that he will be you the ‘Struggle for the country. asked by the Witan to England’ and discuss the The Earls of Mercia and become King. Candidates for the Throne Northumbria are both should the King’s succumb powerful members of the to his illness. 7

The Saxon Times Wessex, has so far issued a party manifesto. HAROLD GODWINSON Relationship’ between the From all the rumours Earl of Wessex Courts of England and circulating it does not need Anglo-Saxon Normandy until the much imagination to Normans were ousted from identify how the other two Court by Earl Godwin in will rule Saxon England but 1052. we can make no judgements Duke William claims that on the grounds of our media in 1051 King Edward named impartiality. him as his successor. Ultimately, the next King He alleges that Harold will be chosen by the Witan, swore an Oath of Allegiance the Saxon Parliament and to him in 1064 but our crowned in the new West sources believe that it was Minster Abbey. said under duress and does DECISIONS, DECISIONS not count. It will be in the hands of HAROLD HARDRADA The Witan who will succeed Harold has inherited and King of Norway, maintained his father’s Resident of Norway King Edward. power and influence over There is much to be said Wessex and England and for maintaining the status has been the most powerful quo for this island nation. man in England since 1053, Our democracy has save for the King. evolved over the last 600 Related by marriage to years. It works and there is the King, indications are no reason for change for the that Harold, a Saxon, will be sake of change. named as heir and succeed The remaining two Edward in the interests of An outsider whose link to candidates offer closer ties state security and peace. the throne precedes that of with Europe, both politically Harold Godwinson has King Edward. and economically. asserted that he has been A cruel Viking who may However, it is likely that chosen by Edward the have some support in the they will impose their own Confessor to be the next wilder reaches of the realm laws and taxes and King of England. and is linked to Tostig, the ultimately the control of the WILLIAM OF NORMANDY exiled former Earl of Anglo-Saxon state will pass Duke of Normandy, Northumbria and Harold’s overseas. Without doubt, whoever Resident of Normandy estranged brother. becomes King will have an Hardrada is a harsh and impact on all our lives. bitter man with an axe to These next few days will grind. decide the future of TIMES EDITORIAL: WHO WILL BE KING? England. These are the three candidates who we believe will put their names in the hat to be King should King Edward, the Confessor, die. All three believe that they have strong claims to the William is a cousin of our King, once removed, and throne but only the Saxon, there was once a ‘Special Harold Godwinson, Earl of 8

The Saxon Times Valencia. Regretfully he never recovered from his illness. His rise to pre-eminence among the Christian rulers of the peninsular has shifted the centre of power and culture away from the Moors towards a more Christian Spain. He will be sorely missed. OBITUARY POLITICAL COMMENT. Edward, born at Islip in CENRED OF ELY TODAY’S EDUCATION NEWS IT WIL BE AN 1004, was the son of POLITICAL EDITOR ILLUMINATING EXPERIENCE Ethelred II and Emma of I hope that I am not An innovative and exciting Normandy and until shortly speaking out of turn but I new project has today been before his accession, he have grave doubts about the announced by the Order of lived in Normandy. future of our beloved St Benedict. He succeeded to the England. The Learn to Read and Write throne on June 8 1042, Will the King’s programme has been th aged 39 and reigned for 23 childlessness ultimately designed to instil the skills years, 6 months and 28 lead to conflict? necessary for men and boys days. Will we have the strength to assimilate knowledge. Married to Edith, and power to resist invasion Initially, tuition will be on Daughter of Earl Godwine of from William, from an individual basis but Wessex the union was not Hardrada or from both? later, students will be blessed with children. I aim to keep a close eye allowed to pursue their own Edward became known on political events this year work and research. as the Confessor for his for my review of 1066 in No previous experience is religious fervour and his twelve months’ time. necessary and all materials good works. EUROPEAN NEWS will be provided. His early reign saw him WILFRID OF STEYNING A pilot programme will be secure the border with FOREIGN CORRESPONDENT run by the Abbey of Fécamp, Scotland but later, power SPAIN Hastings before becoming came to be held by Earl We have heard the sad available at a Benedictine Godwine and later by his news that Ferdinand I of Abbey near you. son Harold, both Earls of Leon and Castille died on More details are to be th Wessex. December 24 , 1065. announced by the end of Their strength brought He is to be succeeded by March 1066. peace to England and his sons Sancho II in TRAVEL ADVICE allowed the distinguished Castille and Alfonso VI in To witness the funeral, leave and dignified King Edward Leon. London by the Ludgate, to pursue his dreams. OBITUARY follow the road above the His reign will always be Ferdinand I (1015 – 1065) River to Thorney Island and known as one of goodness was known as Ferdinand the Palace of West Minster. and purity. the Great (el Magno). He was From the south of the He will be forever the first to have himself Thames, it is recommended remembered for the building crowned Emperor of Spain to cross London Bridge and of the Royal Palace of West in 1056. follow the above route as the Minster and for the Ferdinand I defeated the ferry across to Thorney consecration of West Moor of Valencia (the Taifa) Island from the south bank is Minster Abbey. at the Battle of Paterna but likely to be heavily became ill during the subsequent Siege of congested. 9

The Saxon Times Æfgiva's control of the abbey with a royal charter granting her, in the King’s THE AFTERMATH dark places that can hide a words \"my peace and love, and all my rights within and Kenward of Winchester surprise attack. without the burgh as fully as Chief Wessex Reporter It will be sufficient for the any abbess in that Both William of Poitiers moment to garrison the new monastery of St. Mary had and William of Jumièges, castle and exert power and them in the time of King have urged me to publish influence over the City Edward the Confessor\". It is magnates who are always this character study of the just one more example of new King of England, King greedy for money and the King’s Christian William to allay English wealth, after all the city is discipline.” fears and worries. I believe the economic and political CONQUEROR HIDES that it is in the public centre for his new Kingdom. IN NUNNERY! Now he is King, it will be interest and important for his first task to bring the I have been asked by the readers of The Saxon Londoners completely to those close to King William Times. heel. to advise our readers that “William, Duke of BARKING there is no truth in the Normandy, never allows In a surprise move, King rumour that our feared himself to be deterred from William has moved his court Conqueror has found safety any enterprise because of to Barking Abbey in Essex. in a nunnery. the labour it entails. He is It is a strange action but The Court has been strong in body and tall in I am assured by William of moved to Barking stature. He is moderate in Poitiers that it is in keeping temporarily whilst several drinking, for he deplores with both the King’s need for strongholds are made ready drunkenness in all men. In safety, his Christian will and in the City. These speech he is fluent and it is close to the key old strongholds are intended be persuasive, being skilled at Roman road north. a preventative measure to all times in making clear his Brother William help safeguard the security will. He follows the Christian remarked, “The King has of the population of London discipline in which he has previously endowed the from insurrection. been brought up from Benedictine Abbey at Caen Reading between the childhood, and whenever his in Normandy and Barking lines, the Norman health permits he regularly Abbey also follows the Rule Government are wary of the attends Christian worship of St. Benedict. The King fickleness of a huge and each morning and at the intends to confirm Abbess fierce population. celebration of mass.” William of Poitiers praises the king's justice and clemency. He is at pains to point-out that the King has already given strict instructions to his Noble Norman Knights not to oppress the conquered English. IS LONDON SAFE FOR KING WILLIAM? I fear that the new King sees London as a dangerous place and still fears for his safety. There are too many 10

The Saxon Times Answers can be found in the end of the year edition 11

The Saxon Times SUBMISSIONS The former Duke William EPITAPH Cenred of Ely of Normandy, who has 31 December 1066 st Political Editor, taken this country by force, I regret to inform all our is now King of England. A loyal readers that this will The King has removed new name is circulating be the last and final edition himself, his court and his amongst Saxons and of the Saxon Times. loyal guard to Barking Normans that the King There will be a new paper, Abbey whilst certain would like to be known as a Norman paper, The fortifications are completed 'the Conqueror'. It is not a Norman Times that will in the city that will contain name that slips of a Saxon reflect the values of a new the restlessness of its vast tongue easily. England. and savage population. Over A DISASTROUS YEAR Written by Normans, the last three days, there It has been 102 days published by Normans, have been great comings since the screams of war, written in French, it will not and goings at this remote the threats, the fear, the be a paper for the true court of King William. flight and the deaths began people of England. He has taken the at Fulford Gate. opportunity to receive once It is now close to the end Farewell again the submissions of of this disastrous year for The Editor the brothers Morcar, Earl of Saxon England – we have Eadwine of Canterbury Northumbria, and Edwin, lost our King and our Earl of Mercia and Morcar Kingdom and once more and Edwin's sister, Queen England has become a Ealdgyth who is the widow province of the Latin world. of the loved and lost King We wait until 1067 before Harold II. we can judge the Normans William of Poitiers on their aspirations and the commented that \"the king effect on the people of graciously accepted the England, those material oaths which they offered conditions, the politics and him, generously bestowed the mentality of a crushed his favour upon them, population. restored to them all their But in the meantime, life possessions, and held them goes on. Hair combed, beer in great honour.” brewed, bred baked, fuel It would be a move that found, and a wise man will the King hoped would create hold his tongue. allies with the Houses of The wealth of the nation Mercia and Northumbria, will remain, but our land cementing the loyalty of the may be lost. Personal wealth Midlands and the North and will need to be protected as bringing them under best we can, the gold and Norman control. It was a jewels hidden, cattle moved brave move that could to safety before the Normans herald peace in our time. come to tax and loot. THE FUTURE The Normans already In the meantime, we can look upon the English as but hope that it will be a social inferiors. French is prosperous New Year for the language of the court you all. and the ruling class and it is intimated that Anglo-Saxon The Saxon Times wishes all will not be used by other our readers a Happy New than peasants and slaves. Year. 12

The Saxon Times The Saxon Times is a compilation of the available historical information from a wide variety of sources that include relevant books, magazines, journals, To me, The Saxon The Saxon Times and to television, radio and of Times formed an share my experiences course the internet. important link to the with others. Where dates cannot be history of 1066 Harold’s However, there are pinpointed accurately, Way, the guidebook to the only a few dates that can they have been included new long distance walk be confirmed categorically as summary of events that I had devised and and often there is a that provide some written in 2013. discrepancy or a historical context to I felt that a difference of opinion and 1066. I must thank newspaper would record sometimes pure and all ‘eye-witness’ reports of conjecture as to when the their contributors whose the events surrounding events happened. valuable research has both the Death of Edward I have attempted to provided much the Confessor and the draw together a timescale background reading for coronation of King Harold that meets the facts and additional news items. II at the beginning of 1066 the logistics of moving Much of 1066 is more and led to the Battle of armies around Saxon often the stuff of legends Hastings, 14 October England. and uncorroborated tales th 1066. The main problem is that that allow a story to be The more that I the two main chroniclers, woven as a best guess, a researched, I realised William of Poitiers and more than likely scenario. there was an opportunity William of Jumièges, both If you know better, please to record all of 1066 wrote their respective let me know. through the eyes of Saxon ‘books’ some years after One such tale is what Times reporters. 1066. happened to Harold’s Many sources linked The bulk of the writing of body after the Battle. dates and facts but little William of Poitiers’ ‘Gesta With no written records about the background. Guillelmi’ probably took and three differing Often, there was little to place between 1071 and legends to choose from I reflect on the events on 1077 and William of have followed the one the periphery of 1066 but Jumièges’ Gesta legend that I believe adds that nevertheless had an Normannorum Ducum to the story of The Saxon important impact on the (Deeds of the Dukes of the Times. outcome both before and Normans) was most likely There are many stories to after the Battle of finished in the year of his tell of 1066 and I hope Hastings. death in 1070. With no that I have brought them My research internet access, alive for you. uncovered such a rich Dictaphones, laptops or and varied history, often tablets it is unsurprising It is a fascinating year. with conflicting views, that the dates may be out. that it gave me the David Clarke impetus to want to write St Leonards on Sea 13

The Saxon Times The Author David Clarke walks, talks and writes books. David is the creator and author of 1066 Harold’s Way, the long distance walk inspired by King Harold’s epic march to the Battle of Hastings and included occasional reports from The Saxon Times to bring 1066 alive to modern day walkers. Researching, exploring and discovering all things 1066 provided David with the opportunity to write a complete review of that fateful year in the form of The Saxon Times. The Saxon Times explains the great events of that tumultuous year in an original, educational and entertaining format. David’s considers that his experience as a teacher and his membership of the Outdoor Writers and Photographers Guild, CAMRA, The Inn Sign Society, The Ramblers and the Long Distance Walkers Association to be a perfect match for walking, talking and writing. David’s books include; 1066 Harold’s Way, Walking the High Weald (Three Castles and an Ironmaster’s House) and he continues to write new walks for his popular series of History Walks books that explore and discover the rich history of Hastings, Rye, Battle and 1066 Country. 14

The Saxon Times The Saxon Times When King Edward the Confessor died in January 1066 nobody could have foreseen the year of bloodshed that would take place. Under the leadership of Harold Godwinson, Dux Angolurum, England was at peace but Edward’s death and King Harold’s coronation set the country into a tumultuous spiral of battles and invasions, treachery and duplicity that ultimately the cost King Harold the throne of England. The Saxon Times is a look at how the events of 1066 may have been reported by a contemporary English Newspaper and takes a very different look at 1066 through the eyes of The Saxon Times reporters. The Saxon Times review of 1066 starts at the consecration of West Minster Abbey, in December 1065, and ends on New Year’s Eve 1066 with the new King ‘hiding’ in a nunnery in Barking. The Saxon Times is an historically accurate resource that has been written to inform and entertain and has been much commended for its unique view of life in 1066 and the events that changed England forever. Published by History Walks Printed by Pixartprint 15

The Saxon Times 16

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