Today’s lecture was primarily about the Norman conquest of Britain. It started off with a breakdown of the kings who ruled parts of England (like who succeeded who, who was the brother of who) then it moved onto tracking where the kings originated from (like who was exiled while this king ruled, then brought a group of soldiers back with them to retake the throne) before finishing with William the conqueror’s defeat of King Harold (we primarily used the bayeux tapestry, which is actually a long piece of embroidery, because it broke down from the timeline of how king Harold gave fealty to William the duke of Normandy, but when king Edward died, king Harold takes over for king Edward, which gives William a “reason to invade” Britain – a significant point in history where king Harold is defeated at the battle of Hastings, and William conquerors all of Britain afterwards, thus earning his name: William the conqueror.
Then after lunch, we discussed three primary sources about William the conqueror’s harrowing of the north (when, in 1069 he destroyed much of Northumbria- causing an enormous famine- because the local Northumbrians resisted William’s rule). We talked about how the attitude became more condemning of William and how the conquest was seen as more villainous instead of a moment when the Christians deserved the persecution because they weren’t good enough Christians. Then we looked at copies of manuscripts: the Anglo Saxon chronicle (which was in old English and kept track of “everything” that happened over a period of centuries) the Bayeux tapestry, the stories of the far east (some with interesting pictures, and the only complete copy of Beowulf) and then the Libre Veta (which was a book that recorded just names, but it began in the ninth century and ended in the 15th century).