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The Battle of Stamford Bridge

Duration:
45 minutes
First broadcast:
Thursday 02 June 2011

Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the Battle of Stamford Bridge.In the first week of 1066 the English king, Edward the Confessor, died. A young nobleman, Harold Godwinson, claimed that Edward had nominated him his successor, and seized the throne. But he was not the only claimant: in France the powerful Duke of Normandy, William, believed that he was the rightful king, and prepared to invade England.As William amassed his forces on the other side of the Channel, however, an army led by the Norwegian king Harald Hardrada invaded from the North Sea. Harold quickly marched north and confronted the Norsemen, whose leaders included his own brother Tostig. The English won an emphatic victory; but barely three weeks later Harold was dead, killed at Hastings, and the Norman Conquest had begun.With: John HinesProfessor of Archaeology at Cardiff UniversityElizabeth RoweLecturer in Scandinavian History of the Viking Age at Clare Hall, University of CambridgeStephen BaxterReader in Medieval History at King's College LondonProducer: Thomas Morris.

  • FURTHER READING

    Kelly DeVries, ‘The Norwegian Invasion of England in 1066’ (Boydell Press, 2003)

    Peter Marren, ‘1066: The Battles of York, Stamford Bridge and Hastings’ (Battleground Britain), (Pen & Sword Books Ltd, 2002)

    N. J. Higham, ‘The Death of Anglo-Saxon England’ (Sutton Publishing, 1997)

    E. A. Freeman, ‘The History of the Norman Conquest of England: Its Causes and Its Results’ (3rd edn, 6 vols, Oxford, 1870–79)

    F. Barlow, ‘The Godwins: The Rise and Fall of a Noble Dynasty’ (London, 2002)

    S. Baxter, ‘The Earls of Mercia: Lordship and Power in Late Anglo-Saxon England’ (Oxford, 2007)

    M. Magnusson and H. Palsson (trans.), ‘King Harald’s Saga’ (Penguin Classics, 1966) from Snorri Sturluson’s ‘Heimskringla’

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