King William was born in c1028 inFalaise by Duke Robert I “Duke of Normandy” and his mistress Herleva.
Hesucceeded his father, in 1035, who dead at Nicea on his way from a pilgrimageto Jerusalem.William became the new duke ofNormandy at the age of 8 later becoming King of England. He was crowned a Kingon ChristmasDay 1066 at Westminster Abbey and ruled England till September 1087, when he deadin Rouen, France and was buried in St Stephen’s Abbey, Caen, Normandy.He got married in the year 1050 to Matilda Blander. Thecouple gave birth had at least nine children. But whenhedied he left Normandy to his eldest son, Robert Curthose.
He also left theEnglish crown and sword to his second son William. He William’s relationship with the church in hisduchy was respect and honor. Taking part in church councils, he made severalappointments to the Norman episcopate which included the appointment of Archbishopof Rouen, Maurilius. Although he was very religious he managed to bring many ofthe church’s everyday functions under the authority of common law by separatingecclesiastical courts from lay courts.William expected to be crowned King after the deathof Edward the confessor. But When Edward the Confessor died he was dismayed tohear that Harold had taken the crown and was therefore planning to invadeEngland .He went to a one day battle “hasting battle” at Senlac Hill and won thusgaining control of the English treasury, London. He took the city by mounting acampaign of devastation across it, forcing Edgar Atheling to surrender.
EARLYLIFEBeing the only heir of his father’s throne yet hewas a bastard landed him into a series of battles over power with hisrelatives. Although William faced several challenges uponbecoming duke -due to his illegitimate birth, he enjoyed the support of hisgreat-uncle, Archbishop Robert, as well as the king of France, Henry I, whoenabled him to succeed to his father’s duchy.Concerned about William’s wellabout since he was Normandy’s growing king, French king Henry I played a majorrole on lending an hand whenever needed.
To begin with when William’s cousin,Guy of Burgundy, tried to over through him in 1046, king Henry I helped himdefeat him at Val-és-Dunes, and firmly secured control over Normandy.On the other hand, with the help ofHenry, William was able to capture Alençon and Domfrontcastle in Maine, France in 1051–52. Again with King Henry’s – besieged therebels- help Arques-la-Bataille castle was surrendered to William in 1053. Sometimes Henry was not that supportiveto William, together with Geoffrey of Anjou they decided to invade Normandy in1054, but they withdrew at Mortimer when part of their force forced them to. Not being satisfied with theoutcome, Henry and Geoffrey led another invasion in 1057 with determination Williamwas able to defeat them once more. The Battle was labeled as the Battle ofVaraville, Normandy kingdom won.
In 1050, William married the daughter of Count Baldwin V of Flanders, Matilda Flanders.The union bolstered William’s status since his father in-law was one of themore powerful French territories leaders, with ties to the German emperors and theFrench royal houseHOW WILLIAM’S NAME CHANGED FROM WILLIAM BASTAD TO WILLAM THECONQUERORA ruthless leaderHis cousin led a rebellion against him he enlisted the supportof the French king and won thus emerged as a ruthless leader due to thepunishments he enforced on the rebels, he chopped off their feet and hands toinstill fear and establish Normandy as a powerful state. Socialable and born skilled leader William was a social able person; he quickly connected with his distantcousin, Edward the Confessor, King of England, during his refuge in Normandywhen Viking invaders overthrew his father. When Edward returned to England hewrote to William and promised him the crown once he dies and decided to nameHarold the king William took the decision to the battle field with the help ofFrance King and won the Kingdom.Wiseand strategic leaderHe saw an opportunity on Harold’s capture -on his way to Francewhen his ship wrecked, by the Count of Ponthieu in 1064. William ordered Ponthieu -his old rival, torelease him and bring him to Normandy.
By doing this favor Harold swore to helpWilliam secure the English throne after Edward’s death. Although Harold did nothonor his pledge, once the king dead he gladly took the grown.AuthoritativeLeaderHe creates a new Norman aristocracy to cement hiskingship. He forced the north by laying waste to their villages, destroyingfarmlands and robbing agricultural communities of their livelihoods thus faminestruck making them eating cats, dogs, and even human flesh to survive after aseries of rebellions they gave in thus he managed to unite England, under hisauthority.