William I, more famously known as William the Conqueror, is famous for the overtaking of the English Throne in the Battle of Hastings, ending Anglo-Saxon rule and introducing Normans. The accounts of this event are depicted in the famous Bayeux Tapestry, stretching over 70 meters in length!
The fight apparently began on 9 am 14 of October and lasted a full day. Although both parties had roughly equal numbers, Harold’s army is largely comprised of foot soldiers, with a few archers, while William had cavalry, infantry, and a large area of archers, the english created a wall of shields that threw off William’s army and presented large casualties, yet he managed to succeed through 2 feigned retreats and kill Harold, ending the Battle.
The Bayeux Tapestry
He was born in Falaise in 1028, son of Robert I and Herleva, Daughter of Fulbert of Falaise. He was faced with challenges at roughly seven or eight years old, but with the support of his uncle, the Archbishop Robert, and the King of France, he was able to succeed his father becoming the duke of normandy, but when Robert died, it descended into chaos
There is Contestability as to if William debated with his supporters and noblemen if they should risk a siege on England, as he was pretty in control of them at the time.
During the battle of Hastings, Harold, after defeating Harald Hardrada and Tostig, left most of his army in the NOrth and marched south to face William, setting up camp on Senlac Hill, approximately 6 miles from William’s Castle
The cause of his death is still undisputed, with some claiming the duke killed him himself while others think he was shot with an arrow
After Taking over the throne, William the Conqueror took on his new title and became King of England. With this he brought many new reforms and changes, revoking the rule of the Anglo-Saxons and replacing them with Normans, he brought Feudalism and a structured society with social classes. He built more castles for the scottish and involved the church. He is also responsible for the famous Domesday book, created in 1086 upon William’s command as a written record for what is in his kingdom, and how much tax he can yield for it. The amazing thing is that even with only people travelling by foot, this remarkable feat was accomplished in 7 months!
Alongside him William also separated England into a North and South side. And in 1069 parts of them rebelled against him, with the largest culprits in the North. To combat this he unleashed a big fury, killing over 75% of the population and salting the crops so people would starve to death. This was the notorious ‘Harrying of the North’. After this, the Southern part were 4 times more wealthy than the Northern parts and the wealth there decreased by 40%