Today In History
On this day in 1066, Edward the Confessor, King of England, dies and, in doing so, creates Western Civilization.
OK, well, maybe that’s an oversimplification.
Whether Edward’s marriage with Edith of Wessex was fruitless because of his vow of celibacy, his resentment for her family (her father blinded Edward’s brother, Alfred) or just the normal reasons people can’t have children is irrelevant.
The relevant matter is that Edward didn’t make it clear who he intended his successor to be. The Godwins (that’s the aforementioned Edith’s family) were Earls of Wessex and, at least locally, a sensible choice. Harold Godwinson, thus, was crowned as king. And then he prepared himself for the invasion from the Duke of Normandy – William the Conqueror (he was just “William” at this point because he’d not yet conquered anything).
And 1066 became one of the seminal years in western history.
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