1066 is the most famous date in English history. On 14 October, on Senlac Hill near Hastings, a battle was fought that would change the face of England forever. Over the next twenty years, Norman culture was imposed on England, and English politics and society were radically reshaped. But how much is really known about William 'the Conqueror', the Norman duke who led his men to victory on that autumn Saturday in what was to be the last successful invasion of England? Mark Hagger here takes a fresh look at William - his life and leadership. As king, he spent much of his reign threatened by rebellion and invasion. In response, he ordered castles and strongholds to be built across the land - a symbol of the force with which he defended his realm and which, along with Domesday Book, England's first public record, attest to a powerful legacy. This book provides a rounded portrait of one of England's greatest rulers.
Mark Hagger is Lecturer in Medieval History at Bangor University. He is the author of The Fortunes of a Norman Family: the de Verduns in England, Ireland and Wales 1066-1316 and has also published a number of articles on Norman aristocracy, law and government.
Prologue: Coronation, 1. Fire and Sword Everywhere, 1027-1047, 2. The Undefeated Duke 1047-1066, 3. William the Conqueror 1066, 4. I See God: Ritual and Government, 5. Stern Beyond Measure 1066-1076, 6. William and the Church, 7. A Kingly Figure: William's Person and Personality, 8. Storms of Troubles 1076-1087, Legacy, Further Reading.