A History of Great Britain by Robert Balmain Mowat - CHAPTER VI - The Norman Kings

August 23 2018

CHAPTER VI - The Norman Kings

This is a very short chapter. The two most important figures, William the Conqueror and Henry II., have their time in the spotlight primarily in Chapter V. and Chapter VII. respectively.

William the Conqueror is now king of England and is restructuring the ownership of land and forests.

In true Norman fashion, he is making sure that all property is under ownership of those considered worthy.

He is followed by his son William II, who is known for his lack of grace and love of vice and for his suspicious death. He leaves no offspring.

He is followed by brother Henry I. - who marries a descendant of Edmund ‘Ironside’. While Henry I. has a son, William Ætheling, the same tragically drowns in the White Ship disaster in 1120. This leads Henry I. to declare his daughter, Matilda, to his heir.

Despite all good preparation, it is Henry I.’s nephew Stephen who eventually ascends the throne.

He had sworn an oath to support Henry I. daughter, Empress Matilda for the throne but quickly goes back on his word and in his karma-filled reign, brings about war and famine for 17 of his 19 years as king.

He is followed by Henry II, who ends the war.