Harald Hardrada: King of Norway What was Harald Hardrada famous for? Was Harald Hardrada a good king? How did Harald Hardrada die in the battle of Hastings? Who defeated King Harold of Norway?

 On the 20th of September 1066 a battle was fought on the outskirts of the village of Fulford in northern England the English Earl's edwin of Mercia and Morcar of Northumbria had hastily gathered their forces together along with the local Lords of the north to mount a defense against this last great Viking invasion of England these were no mere raiders facing them across the fields to the combined might of the kingdom of Norway along with its allies and the Scottish Isles and also the recently deposed English Earl of Northumbria the brother of the new king kostik Godwinson the English struck first advancing on the Norwegians before they could fully deploy but this wasn't the Norwegian Kings first battle

 He was Harald Hardrada the famous Viking who had spent his entire lifetime adventuring and battling all over the known world from modern-day Palestine to Italy to Russia to Ukraine he had carved out a fortune from the blood of his enemies and fought against far greater men than a pair of mere English Earl's after the battle was joined on both sides harald charge into the weakest english point along with his best soldiers his elite housecarls who had been lying in wait and together they routed the English forces completely within days he had taken York long with stronghold sympathetic Scandinavians and he began to make his preparations for the inevitable attack which would soon come from the English King in London only two decades earlier England had been ruled by Knut himself for Scandinavia and Harald likely wanted to restore the great northern sea Empire which Knut had ruled over which consisted of Norway Denmark and England Harald was a scowled a warrior poet who recorded his own deeds for posterity he was an adventurer the atypical Viking and one of the last of a dying breed Harald had been born long before the events of 1066 in ring Greek Norway in 1015 he was the youngest half-brother of King Olaf haraldson who in turn could trace his lineage back to Harald fairhair the first king of Norway Harald was by no means guaranteed any sort of leadership in typical Viking fashion he tended to act rashly and rebellious Lee in his youth he was ambitious as opposed to his two older brothers who were more grounded and mostly concerned with keeping what they already had following the revolt in 1028 King Olaf was to post forced into exile by a popular uprising in support of Knut of England for two years he raided the coastline until he returned to Norway in 1030 with a massive army what happened next is unclear


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 As Olaf may have simply died or been assassinated but after he was sainted later chroniclers claimed that he died in a great last stand which was fought at sticklers dad on the 29th of July 1030 Harald just 15 years old at the time is said to have a master force of 600 men to support his half-brother in his fight to reclaim the throne in the ensuing carnage olaf was killed and Harald not badly wounded is said to have been evacuated by his followers to a remote farm in eastern Norway where he recovered from his wounds from there he traveled east to find his fortune across the mountains into Sweden finally arriving

 A year later in the Scandinavian Slavic Kingdom of the kiev and ruse in the modern-day ukraine the kingdom of the ruse had been established well over a century earlier by scandinavian explorers and warriors who had carved themselves out one of the largest and most powerful states in europe and over time merged somewhat with the local Slavic population to create a truly unique culture Grand Prince Yaroslav the wives whose Swedish wife Inga guard was a distant relation of Harold's and who had also been an ally of his late brother Olaf welcomed him and his men with open arms


 Yaroslav was in need of military leaders at the time immediately put the young eager warrior to work in his army he took part in campaigns in its the polls in 1031 and likely against the nomadic pechenegs from the eastern steppe land after a few years however Harald seems to have grown Restless again and he asked for permission to go south to the great city that the Vikings called Mick Lagarde by far one of the largest and most prosperous in the world at the time we know the city by a different name the capital of the eastern Roman Byzantine Empire Constantinople by the time Harald arrived in Constantinople

 like moths to a flame Scandinavians had been attempting to gain access to the great city and access its untold riches for nearly 200 years at first led by the princes of the Kiev in ruse

 They had attempted invasion on numerous occasions but conclusively failed to breach the impenetrable defenses that they found within a few generations however as more and more Scandinavians became Christianized and more receptive to the Byzantines they sought a different way into the city began to offer their services to the Emperor in return for payment of course by 988 under the service of battle the second one of the greatest Byzantine emperors an elite cadre of Nordic warriors who pledged their allegiance and over the next 300 years they would serve as the most elite force within the Byzantine army they were known as the Varangian guard heralds joined a long line of Scandinavians who had been entering the service of emperors for generations and according to the sagas he quickly became a high-ranking commander of great renown in reality this is rather unlikely as at the time Harald was still a minor nobleman from Norway who was yet to make a name for himself nevertheless over his decade-long service to the Byzantines he did undoubtedly rise in status over time to become a great leader in guard in his first year of service as the Byzantines pushed the Arabs back out of Asia Minor Harald campaigned as far as the Euphrates in modern-day Syria where according to later chronicles he participated in the capture of 80 Arab strongholds

 He again fought against the nomadic Pechenegs as well as the powerful Bolger state to the north of the empire as well as seeing substantial combat in Sicily and southern Italy fighting against both the Arabs and later the Normans led by William iron arm he even likely traveled to Jerusalem although historians debate whether this was on a diplomatic mission or on a military campaign during his decade serving the Empire Herald survived several usurpations of power the sagas note that aside from the significant spoils of battle he acquired on three separate occasions he participated in palace plunder a term which implies either the pillaging of the palace treasury on the death of the Emperor or perhaps the disent of funds to the Varangians by the new emperor in order to ensure their loyalty Harald certainly amassed a huge fortune during his time with the guard much of which he had shipped back to his ally Yaroslav in Kiev for safekeeping during the last civil conflict the guards loyalties were split down the middle Harold was fortunate enough to join the winning side supported the ultimately successful rebels the Emperor Michael v was blinded and overthrown as was Byzantine custom if some source is saying that Harold did the blinding himself when the new Empress - Zoe refused to let Herod leave her service he took two boats and escaped north into the Black Sea losing one of the ships to the great iron change crossed the harbor in the process Harold now an experienced warrior and a man of thirty was going home

 He would win himself a kingdom or he would die in the process he arrived back in Scandinavia around 1046 which in his absence had become the domain of the king Magnus the good an illegitimate son of Ola who had succeeded Knut with the help of the Norwegian Nobles over the next few months Harald now with an army and much support managed to win joint leadership of Norway without fighting a single battle under this diplomatic compromise the two kings were jointly rule Norway although Magnus kept control of Denmark although technically allowed to one another the two kings held different courts didn't interact each time they did the sources report the violence very nearly broke arms upon Magnus his death in late 10:47 however Harald could finally rule over Norway

 As the sole king for the next two decades Harald raided Denmark to scare the local population into joining him rather than King Sweyn s tourism he also launched several ultimately unsuccessful full-scale invasion such as one in 1062 which resulted in an epic sea battle at nisa by most accounts Harold's domestic rules seem to have been largely successful and he earned the title Hardrada meaning hard ruler or stern counsel during this period he standardized the currency streamlined the infrastructure of the relatively young country using techniques of rule that he had witnessed under the Byzantines

 He initiated vast extensive trade networks throughout Europe and beyond with the help of his Byzantine and ruse allies true tis adventuring nature he also explored the lands to the north of his kingdom and may have even sought out the mysterious realm of inland modern-day North America which had been discovered a generation earlier he did record discovering an unforgiving frosted land to the north which may have either means foul Bart or the Novaya Zemlya archipelago of modern-day Russia for 1066 after the death of the last eligible claimant to the house of Wessex Edward the Confessor Harold sought to take England for himself and reform the northern sea Empire which Knut advendio the new English King Harold Godwinson an influential noble whose family have grown strong limb - Knut was an illegitimate choice in Harold's eyes when the Kings brother Tostig was exiled and lost his earldom of Northumbria

 In 1065 he sought revenge arriving in Harold's Court not long afterwards were together they hashed a daring plan to seize the throne of England after extensive preparations they landed on the coast of England September 1066 with around 10 to 15,000 men and a fleet of some 300 ships they enjoyed success at first and after Fulford his men were in high spirits they could relax for a while knowing that Harold's forces must surely be days away if they were coming at all after all Duke William of Normandy himself descended from Norseman also had plans for England without warning on a 25th of September a massive English force arrived Godwinson had assembled huge army and made the distance from the south in just a matter of days an incredible feat and they took the old Viking completely by surprise Harold's men had no time to prepare both here in his army were not even wearing their chainmail vests when the English attacked despite an epic last stand on a bridge by one of Harold's berserkers

 The English crossed over wiped out Harold's forces killing both him antastic in the process the sources recount how in true Viking fashion Harold was killed early in the battle by an arrow to the throat as he swung his great 200 sword around aggressively in a berserker rage the last great Viking ruler who was dead and after well over 200 years of supremacy in the British Isles never again would a scandinavian army defeat an English war,,,,,,,,,.......... 

Olaf Haraldsson: King of Norway 1015-1028Who was Olaf Haraldsson? When did OLAF become king? What is Olaf the patron saint of? When was Olaf canonized?

 At the brutal sea battle of spaulder near 1,000 most of Norway came under the control of the Danish King Sweyn Forkbeard the battle was the latest confrontation in a near centuries-long struggle by Danish rulers to exert their authority to the north Swain's one-time 

Ally Olaf twig fastened a warlord who had once ridden side by side with Spain if they ravaged England together during the 1990s made a last stand upon his mighty flagship the long serpent before leaping to his death in the frigid waters of the Baltic Sea after consolidating his hold over Norway and dividing it up between ambitious regional the Isles Spain then turned against England finally conquering it in 1030 just months later however and the great Danish ruler died and in the absence of his strong handed rule his empire began to break apart Denmark fell into the hands of his son


 Harold in England his son Knut attempted to stake his own claim on the English throne but was initially rejected in favour of the return of King Ethelred from his exile in Normandy meanwhile in Norway talk of rebellion against the Danes began to take hold as various vassals again attempted to reassert their independence it is therefore not so surprising that in the aftermath of Spain's death considerable amounts of Norwegians seem to have fought on the behalf of Canute's enemies in England and elsewhere apparently foremost amongst these warriors was a young mercenary commander originally from the traditional royal heartland of stick Lestat just 19 or so at the time it already a veteran battlefield commander Olaf Harrelson was a direct descendant of the first King of Norway Harald fairhair and he likely saw it as his calling to shake off Danish control from the south and to unify Norway once more into a single Kingdom the first step in this mission was to be as much of a thorn in the side of Knut as possible and to ensure that he wouldn't have an easy ride in conquering England and reestablishing Danish control in Norway this opportunity first arose when Ethelred annex Island Normandy at the court of his brother-in-law at the time was recalled back to assume his throne by the witan of England Olaf also in Normandy went with him

 The little is concretely known about Olaf's youth it seemed that as a potential claimant to the throne of Norway during a time when ambitious regional y'alls ruled most of the country on path from the Danish king he probably hadn't been welcomed nor particularly safe in his homeland as he was canonized shortly after his death because of his adherence to Christianity a vast amount of information was later written on Olaf's yet precisely because of these legends it remains difficult to arrive at an accurate picture of his life as was often the case with royal princes in Scandinavia Olaf seems to have taken to the Seas early in his life to make a name for himself according to one of the most important sources of his life Behaim screen glare written down in around 1225 olaf landed on the estonian island of Sarah Mayer in 1008 at the head of a band of warriors at first the local inhabitants agreed to pay off the Vikings to leave though soon enough a force was raised to fight them a hard battle was fought there on;

 The shores of baltic sea but Olaf and his men eventually emerged victorious if the sagas are to be believed he then led his men even further north to the coast of modern-day Finland at the Battle of hurdler fought within the mysterious frosted woodlands at the North Olaf was ambushed and barely escaped with his life back to ships losing a large number of men in the process despite a heavy storm arising Olaf then ordered his ships to cast off and only barely survived to tell the tale after more raiding and adventuring around the shores of the Baltic Olaf eventually found his way to Normandy originally founded by Scandinavians a century earlier but now a Christian Duchy officially subjects to France it in reality mostly independent from outside influence despite being Christians now the Normans still looked fondly upon their past and tended to have a soft spot for Scandinavians who often found service in the armies of the Norman dukes thus when ethelred's then married to Emma of Normandy the sister of the Duke of Normandy was recalled to the throne of war-torn England in 1014 Olaf not only went with him but could have actually been the very reason why Ethelred was able to gain entrance into London and reclaim his throne 

According to some sources Olaf led his norse warriors into battle against canoes Danes possibly even leading a seaborne attack which pulled down London Bridge though he had reclaimed his throne Ethelred soon became ill support for him fell away as Knut returned to England again with a large army sensing that the time was now right to return to Norway and possibly even Laden down with English loot and plunder and certainly payment from Ethelred Olaf gathered his man and sailed north on the way he stopped off again in Normandy and is thought to have converted to Christianity had he not already done so prior to going to England thus when Olaf returned to Norway just like the last independent norwegian king olaf drink rasa and unlike most of his countryman he was now a christian upon his return in 1015 olaf quickly declared himself king successfully obtaining the support of the five petty kings of the norwegian uplands largely 


Because of his lineage in 1016 and the Battle of Nessie ah he succeeded in defeating his main opposition the Earl of laid Swain Hawkinson a vassal of Denmark and Sweden previously the de facto ruler of much of Norway within a few short years Olaf had achieved the unthinkable he had won more power than any of his predecessors on the throne he had annihilated the petty kings of the South subdued the aristocracy reasserted norwegian authority in the Orkney Islands conducted a successful raid on Denmark and even made peace with king olaf of sweden ultimately however as Knut completed his consolidation of rule in England and Denmark he looks northwards once more to exert his influence in Norway at the Battle of Helle gaya in 1026 Knut arrived in Norway with several hundred ships bolstered by English and Danish housecarls though Olaf fought the invasion to a standstill inflicting horrific casualties upon the anglo Danish alliance he was eventually defeated leave Canute the dominant leader in scandinavia by 1029 Canoe succeeded

 In fomenting a popular rebellion against olaf among several of his vassals the king was driven into exile and Knut added Norway to his northern sea Empire with the Earl of late Hakan Eriksson his new Regent after a year or so spent amongst the Kiev on roofs and the Swedes Olaf seized the opportunity to return to restate his claim to the throne at the ensuing battle of stick lestat in 1030 olaf was killed by a coalition of noblemen elides to Knut Knut could only hold on to Norway for another five years however before yet another popular revolt but Olaf's son Magnus the good on the throne in a reversal of the previous Danish supremacy Magnus succeeded in taking the throne of Denmark in 1042 after the death of Knut son half the claims Olaf's younger half-brother Harald Hardrada who had stood with him at stick lestat would also later return from his own exile to claim the throne of Norway in 1046 before he faint fully attentive his own conquest of England 1066  ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,................ 


Haakon 'the Good': King of Norway 934-961Who was the greatest king of Norway? Who was the Viking king of Norway? When Earl Haakon of Norway died who became the next king? Who was the first king of Norway?

 Viking sails were spotted off the coast of england during the late 9 20 s yet these warriors hadn't crossed the sea to raid nor had they come to make war upon the newly forged nation instead they had come on a diplomatic mission their destination the court of King Athelstan grandson of Alfred the Great the first King to bear the title king of the English though the ships were likely manned by battle-hardened Nordic warriors hailing from the frosted fjord lands of the north their dragon boats carried another cargo - a young boy of around 10 years old a prince and if the sagas are to be believed the youngest son of the veteran Norwegian King Harald fairhair the boy's name was hack on and for close to a decade he would remain Athelstan skort raised as a foster son to the English King alongside a number of other royal princes from all over Europe until finally years later he returns to Norway along with an English fleet to reclaim his birthright ;

 At the time of Hawkins birth probably in around 918 his father Harald fairhair had already ruled over Norway for many decades during that time gradually consolidating the various ya'll domes into something of a centralized state if the sagas are to be believed fair hair was well into his 70s by the time of hawkins birth and he had already divided up norway between his numerous sons from different marriages with his intention being to pass the overall high kingship of norway onto one of them by the time hackin began to grow up arthur his elder half-brother eric had began a violent campaign of murder against the other brothers succeeding in killing several of them and earning himself the title blood acts for his ferocity in his prowess in battle now an old man and sensing the winds of change beginning to blow through the nation he had spent so much time and effort in forging harald fairhair decided to send his son to England to be fostered with Athelstan,,,


 A king who he seems to have had good relations with possibly as both rulers were known to have contended with men from Denmark according to one of the Norse Sagas Athelstan was essentially tricked into accepting the boy so that it would appear to Harold subjects that he was of a higher rank than the English King however it is also known that the English Court at this time was a herb of cultural learning when many European princes were fostered and taught the arts of kingship warfare and political strategy this coupled with the fact that relations between Norway and England seem to have been pretty good at the time as evidenced by extensive archaeological finds and the existence of a mutual enemy in the form of the Danes made Athelstan skort an obvious choice for the young boy to be sent to hack on would never again see his father after he boarded that boat shortly after fair hares death Eric Bloodaxe succeeded to the high kingship of Norway and continued his ruthless policy of murdering any and all political opposition including elements of the nobility previously won over to Harold's camp by his political maneuverings in diplomacy rather than the sheer terror supposedly employed by blood acts meanwhile in England Hakan is said to have become a favorite of Athelstan a king already well-known faced amicable diplomatic relations between Norse and Dane elements within England from which many of his soldiers hailed and he also traditionally fostered a good relationship with the Norwegian crown Athelstan was a european-style monarch  

 He likely saw himself as the heir to Charlemagne's legacy and as search he took pleasure in making far-flung political alliances throughout Europe crucially for Hawkins life and for the future history of Norway the young boy became a Christian during his time in England meanwhile back across the North Sea after just a few short years of despotic and violent raw blood acts succeeded in alienating the Norwegian y'alls to such an extent that the either sent for hackin now around 18 years old to return to oust his brother or Hakan took it upon himself to return and subsequently won the support of the Earl's for his own personal charisma Athelstan even provided the young prince with a small fleet and enough warriors to safely get him home to stake his claim upon his arrival he earned the support of the Earl's but promising to restore their old rights and to reign in the centralised government that blood acts had put in place Eric Bloodaxe soon found himself deserted on all sides he subsequently made his escape along with a small group of followers to take to the high seas embarking on a legendary piratical career which would eventually see him become a king again not in Norway this time but in the wake of Atholl Stan's death he became king of a newly independent Northumbria Athelstan had likely also had another motive in equipping Hakan with a military force and enough ships to reclaim his kingdom they both had a common enemy in the form of the Danish Vikings of Jutland and the Isles it was there over the preceding decades that a powerful dynasty had also been carefully consolidating power into a centralized Authority and now

Haakon 'the Good': King of Norway 934-961Who was the greatest king of Norway?  Who was the Viking king of Norway?  When Earl Haakon of Norway died who became the next king?    Who was the first king of Norway?

 The latest King of Denmark Harald Bluetooth sought to extend his authority even further in acquiring more and more Norwegian lands to the north of his realm a core area of Hawkins territory originally consisted of just his father's old kingdom in western Norway over the coming decades however expertly utilizing the political skills that he had learned in England Hakan succeeded in reestablishing the Alliance's that Harald fairhair had made with the powerful Earl's of Moore and laid subsequently being accepted by them as their high king he even went further arguably doing just as much as his father had in unifying Norway into a singular entity in order to achieve these goals however he did have to sideline his own Christian beliefs well though he did build churches and he endeavoured to spread his faith wherever he could Norway was still staunchly pagan at the time and Hawkins beliefs were regularly overshadowed but blood oaths to Odin and Thor undertaken in order to win the loyalties of regional chieftains hackin did this expertly and won a great deal of support from the Norwegian people to his lenient and peaceful policies rather than having to contend with his own people as his father and his brother Eric had done before him Hawkins main threat was to come instead from the south from the Danish King Harald Bluetooth and his newfound allies the vengeful sons of Eric Bloodaxe in around 954 after having reigned peacefully for a number of years the first major threat to King Hawkins rule and to Norwegian independence came sailing up the strait of karma sets in a fleet of Danish long ships it was the vengeful sons of Eric Bloodaxe looking to carve out lands for themselves in the wake of their father's death over the sea


 In the north of Britain and now supported in their aims by the ambitious Harald Bluetooth along with an army of bloodthirsty Danes after summoning his forces together Hakan sailed out to meet the invasion engaging them in a location later named blood Heights due to the sheer brutality of the fighting despite allegedly being outnumbered by the Danish army hackin stood his ground and won a stunning victory killing three of the sons of blood acts in the process the Danes limped back to the dragon ships pursued all the way by hackin and his men and sailed back to Denmark to lick their wounds yet Hakan knew that as long as they still drew breath his surviving nephews would return in the aftermath of blood Heights a situation in Norway was severe enough for hackin to implement a form of mandatory military service known as the lidocaine which was similar to the anglo-saxon system of the fjord in order to forestall any future invasions from Denmark it was probably a concept that hack on had witnessed in his youth and now sought to implement in his home lands ancient Norse sources claim that this Norwegian defense fleet could mobilize as many as 300 ships when danger threatens although it remains unclear if the full quota of ships was ever mobilized a warning system consisting of Hilltop cans was also created for Norway's defence when enemies approached from the south these cans were lit one after the other to warn the people What does Haakon mean?

 They can then prepare themselves for attack these especially ingenious precautions against invasion stand as a testament to the statesmanship of King Haakon and the loyalty he commanded from his subjects harald bluetooth and the sons of Eric Bloodaxe would return again and again over the coming years most notably at frying at Christian sand and at fit yar in son heartland always being driven away by Hawkins forces and great costs to the Norwegian defenders during that last final invasion Hakan received an arrow to his shoulder the wound would eventually fester killing him shortly afterwards after having reigned for well over two decades and generally being thought of as an extremely capable statesman he breathed new life into the unification begun by his father unlike his brutal older brother Eric Bloodaxe Hakan would go on to  be remembered under a very different epithet pack on the good in the aftermath of his death and in the absence of a strong and respected leader Norway for the most part once more fragmented back into regionally albums Harold gray cloak the eldest surviving son of Eric Bloodaxe became the new king of Norway though he himself was subject to the Danish King Harald Bluetooth and ruled over little more than his father's heart lands in western Norway grey cloak ruled for just a few short years amidst the chaos of civil war until in around 970 he was eventually tricked by bluetooth into traveling to Denmark and subsequently killed by Bluetooth new ally Hawkins Sigurdsson a yawl who then became the new de facto ruler of parts of Norway again under Bluetooth for a time Norway would continue to be intermittently controlled by Danish rulers and regional strongmen for decades to come until rebellion once more put a series of strong rulers on the throne after the death of Knut the Great the last king to directly control England Norway and Denmark  you