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

Olaf Tryggvason: King of Norway 995-1000How did Olaf Tryggvason bring Christianity to Norway? When did Olaf Tryggvason conquer Norway? Who was King Olaf in Vikings? When did Olaf Tryggvason die?

 A battle was fought near Malden in Essex in the year 991 on the one side stood one of england's foremost military commanders brif North the alderman of Essex along with a large force of Anglo Saxon warriors intent on defending their homeland from any and all folks who might threaten the sovereignty of their new country

 The king of the English at the time Ethelred was a ruler already possessing a reputation for reconciliation against his foes rather than fighting on the other side of the Blackwater River stood a Viking horde from across the sea intent on ravaging and pillaging the lush pastures of England like their predecessors had done before them the invaders came from Norway and Denmark and according to the anglo-saxon Chronicle their leader was a ruler known as Olaf often identified as the warlord Olaf Craig Vasa soon to be the king of Norway a warrior known to be active in Britain 

During this time England had been ravaged for decades by renewed Viking raids by this point no longer led by local war leaders as had generally been the case previously but now often led by kings and claimants to Thrones the English response to the renewed Viking threat had been split down the middle up until this point with one half opting to deal with them amicably paying them off with riches to get them to go away the other half of which Earle breath north was a part opted instead into fights to the last man according to the epic poem the Battle of molder olaf addressed the saxon invaders across a shallow causeway which revealed itself at low tide promising to sail away with all of his men if he was paid off with enough gold and armour Britnie replied with characteristic stubbornness 

We will pay you with spear tips and sword blades battle commenced as the land bridge gradually revealed itself allowing three hundred saxon warriors under the Thames wolf stan l fear and macos to hold the causeway against the encroaching North's madman according to the story Olaf then asked to be allowed to cross the river so that the two arms could properly do battle with north apparently agreed possibly his pride getting the better of him and battle was joined with Britnie was apparently betrayed by an Englishman named Godric we fled upon his horse leading many of Britain office men into thinking it was their leader who had fled and following him off the field the Vikings soon triumphed wiping out the English almost to a man in an epic last and whether or not this account is accurate or whether it was a later invention for political purposes it is known that the Scandinavian invaders did indeed win the battle thus gaining a significant foothold in England for decades to come if indeed

 It was Olaf Troy grasan who had led the force he now stood as one of the foremost Scandinavian leaders in the world during a time when Scandinavians found themselves in an unprecedented position of power in the politics and society of Northern Europe in the decades that followed Maldon scandinavian war bands would travel across england at will raiding and stealing being paid off at times by the english king and other times simply taking what they wanted little repercussions from their actions it was a time of Anarchy chaos and lack luster of leadership for the English for the people of England the second Viking Age a truly begun like much that happened during this time period information on the life of Olaf Tryggvason is exceptionally difficult to come by although a certain amount of information can be learned from a number of heroic Icelandic sagas written down several centuries later 

 Generally thought to have been the son of trig Olufsen a grandson of the famous Harald fairhair the first king of Norway and the current king of the province of vic n' which had become independent once more after the death of fair hair divided norway into parts once more this time between his sons dynastic rivalry soon flared up again and by the early 1960s Olufsen was reportedly lured into a trap and murdered by harold grey cloak the son of Eric Bloodaxe and another grandson of Harald fairhair the sources differ about what happens to his young son at this point with some claiming his mother Astrid fled with him to the Orkneys whilst others argue that she took him with her to seek refuge with her family in Sweden after more dynastic squabbles which nearly led to the death of the young boy perhaps after a period of enslavement by Estonian pirates in the Baltic Sea he eventually appears in the kiev in ruse at the court of Prince Vladimir the great himself a ruler with strong historic links with Scandinavia as Olaf grew older Vladimir made him the captain of his household guards but after serving for a few years the King apparently became wary of Ola and his popularity with his soldiers fearing that he might be a threat to the safety of this region Vladimir stopped treating olaf as a friend and he thus decided that it would be better for him to seek his fortunes elsewhere and set out for the baltic the chronicle heimskringla states that after leaving novgorod olaf raided settlements and pores around the Baltic Sea with great success in 982 he was caught in a storm and made port in Wendland in the modern-day Baltic states and soon became involved in the struggles of the local ruler borislav and his daughter princess Gabri whom olaf soon married in the first of many shrewd diplomatic marriages

 He would make during his lifetime olaf began to reclaim rebellious pyrenees which had refused to pay taxes and after these successful campaigns he began raiding further afield towards skåne and Gotland and ever closer towards his own homeland whilst it isn't exactly clear at what point Olaf converted to Christianity he is said to have fought alongside a Christian monarch after the second the Holy Roman Emperor during this time Otto had raised a great army of Wen's Saxons Frisians and franks in order to fight against the pagan norse danish who olaf may have wanted to fight simply to try and reclaim his family's lands rather than out of a spiritual conviction Otto's army met the armies of King Harald Bluetooth and Haqqani all the ruler of Norway under the Danish King at the Dane Virk a great defensive wall on the border of Germany and Denmark Artos army was unable to break the fortification so he changed tactics and sailed around it landing in Jutland with a large fleet otto won a great battle there and subsequently forced harald bluetooth and Haken yawl along with their armies to convert to Christianity after olaf had spent three years in Wendland his wife guerra died at 984 and he set out to plunder again in that year rating from Friesland to the Hebrides spending significant amounts of time in England and Ireland in 988 Olaf met and married guider the sister of the current Norse king in Dublin

 Olaf's Erickson who proved to be a powerful ally it was another politically sound marriage and the pair are said to have spent half of their time in England and the other half in Ireland as Olaf likely continued to amass himself a fortune with which he could use to reclaim the throne of Norway it is within this context that the Battle of Malvern was fought in 991 if Olaf was indeed the warlord who led the Vikings that day and he was likely highly content to simply be paid off by the English breath nafse dogged persistence in fighting him was actually more of an inconvenience nevertheless after defeating the defence forces levy to fight against him Olaf awaited the arrival of King Ethelred who soon enough arrived with a large number of his Lords and proceeded to pay off the Raiders with a huge amount of money in the first recorded instance of Dane gelt paid in 1995 rumors began to surface in Norway about a king in Ireland of Norwegian blood the ruler of Norway al-hakam had also been weakened due to his wars against the new Danish King Sweyn Forkbeard a pagan who rejected the Christian faith olaf seized this opportunity and set sail for norway to capitalize upon the growing instability there after his arrival it soon became clear 

That a revolt had already started against Hakam and olaf was able to use his claim to the throne to make himself its figurehead after his confirmation as king of norway in 1995 olaf travelled to the parts of norway that had not been under the rule of pact on but the direct rule of the king of denmark Sweyn Forkbeard and they too swore allegiance to him he then demanded that the inhabitants of these lands be baptized and reluctantly they agreed in 997 Olaf founded his seat of government at Trondheim where he had first held counsel with the revolted against hack on this new city was situated in a strong defensible position that could easily be defended against land attacks or just one short wall he built significant amounts of churches throughout his lands and doggedly attempted to convert the pagan inhabitants of Scandinavia often by the sword olaf continued to promote Christianity throughout his rule he baptized the Explorer Leif Eriksson in the late 1990s and Leif took a priest with him back to Greenland to convert the rest of his kin olaf is also said to have converted the people and the earl of the Orkney Islands taste new faith routinely using Force to compel conversions to Christianity including executions and violent torture those who refused it has often been said that Olaf's overall ambition was to rule a unified Christian Scandinavia like Knut managed to do a generation later it is known that he made overtures of marriage to cigarete the haughty queen of Sweden during this time but negotiations fell through due to her steadfast pagan faith instead he made an enemy offer it did not hesitate to involve himself in a quarrel with King Sweyn Forkbeard of Denmark by marrying Swain's sister Thea who had fled from her heathen husband at defiance of her brothers Authority in around the year 

1000 Olaf's conflict with Swain would devastatingly come to a head off the island of spaulder in the western Baltic Olaf had been travelling was just a handful of ships when he was ambushed by a massive combined fleet of Swedish Danish and Wendish vessels together with the ships of the vengeful sons of yall Hakan ola fought bravely as one by one his ships were broken apart or captured by the attackers finally making his last stand upon his huge flagship the long serpent said to have been the mightiest ship in the North eventually chosen to leap overboard into the icy Arctic sea in full armour to his death rather than risk capture by his vengeful enemies Swain eventually completed what Olaf had wanted unifying Norway Denmark and finally England in 1013 into a northern sea Empire ruling only nominally as a Christian king with his true colours as a pagan lord of war just under the surface it would be under his son Knut himself a Christian ruler but the kingdoms were finally seen peace and an unprecedented period of prosperity when for a time one of the strongest states in Europe was centered upon Scandinavia you 


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