The Norwegian Invasion of England in 1066

Scandinavian Review, Winter 2000 | Go to article overview

The Norwegian Invasion of England in 1066


The Norwegian Invasion of England in 1066 by Kelly DeVries Rochester, NY: The Boydell Press, 1999 322 pages. Introduction. Maps. Bibliography. Index. Cloth. $60

The 11th century was a time of turbulent warfare, largely because political ascension could best be legitimized by military victory. The author of this scholarly work reacquaints readers with the events that led up to one of the most celebrated military successes of the Middle Ages: the Battle of Hastings in 1066. This first and most decisive victory of the Norman Conquest of England was won by William, duke of Normandy, whose smaller but better trained and better equipped force defeated the English (under King Harold II) in one day.

Just four weeks earlier, a lesser known battle had taken place several hundred miles to the north of Hastings. At a site now referred to as Stamford Bridge, King Harold II had defeated a large army of Norse invaders fed by Haraldr Hardadi (King Harald III of Norway), his other opponent in that year of crisis. …

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