Archive for the ‘The Sons of Godwine’ Category

William the Conqueror’s Landing, 1066

I remember my first trip to England somewhere around 1990 or so.  I headed directly south to Hastings, for I had been studying about the great event and wanted to see the battlefield for myself.  Of course, travel itineraries were much harder to plan in those days, but I saw no reason to doubt that I […]

Swegn Godwineson, Evil or Tragic?

Swegn was the eldest son of a prolific family.  His father, Godwine of Wessex, worked his way up from relative obscurity to the most powerful Earl in the country. Swegn’s future could have been assured if only he had behaved himself and not acted like a rogue and an outlaw. He was the only one […]

Harold Godwineson in Normandy 1064

Harold’s ill-fated trip to Normandy has sparked much debate among historians. Why did he go? How much damage did it cause? One thing is certain: Harold and William were far from strangers by the time they met on the battlefield of Hastings. It is thought by some that Harold was on a fishing trip in […]

Tostig and Stamfordbridge

  By many accounts, the blame for Harold Godwineson’s failure to stop William’s invasion can be laid on his brother Tostig’s shoulders.  What might have started as sibling rivalry seems to have evolved into jealousy, then resentment turned into recrimination, and finally a desire for revenge seems to have swept aside all other considerations…even the safety of […]

Tostig in Exile

After the rebellion that sent Tostig into exile, the Northumbrians apparently felt that the Tostig issue was resolved.  No such luck!  Tostig was busy running around Europe looking for support to re-establish his claim to the earldom.  His first stop was Flanders, where he  brought his family for refuge to the court of his wife’s […]

Tostig, Earl of Northumbria

  When Siward, Earl of Northumbria died in 1055, his only surviving son was still a child, and King Edward awarded the earldom to Harold’s inexperienced brother Tostig.  Although the King was no fan of of the late Earl Godwine, there is evidence that Godwine’s third son was a favorite at court.  Since he was half Danish, […]

What happened to Earl Godwine’s family?

Godwine, Earl of Wessex was one of the most powerful Saxons of his day.  At the height of his career, it looked like he was positioned to found a powerful dynasty.  He had six strapping sons: Swegn, Harold, Tostig, Gyrth, Leofwine, and Wulfnoth, and his daughter Edith was married to the King of England.  It is […]