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Why did William win the Battle of Hastings?

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Introduction

Why did William win the battle of Hastings? In 1066 king Edward the confessor died without any children to inherit the throne of england, this meant that Harold Godwinson was crowned as king despite supposidly promising an oath to william that he would be the next king . However harold faced his position being jeportised because two other determined young men also wanted to be King. These men were Harald Hadrarda and William of Normandy. England was one of the welthiest and most powerfull countrys in the world and all 3 of these men were prepared to do whatever it took to gain the crown. The only way to decide who was going to be king was to engage in battle .Harold and william both prepared there forces. First Harald hardra from norway invaided england with his viking fleet and fought against harold godwinson at stanford bridge .After the Battle of Stamford Bridge (In which Harald had died,) Harold had news that william had finally invaided and went down to hastings to prepare to fight William, but this was going to be tough, both men were desperate to be next King and there could only be one winner. ...read more.

Middle

The army must have been weary encouraged by the strong vicotry at stanfod bridge and gain in arms however the army was cut they were also more drained. Another important reason to why william down in size and a lot weaker than they previously were. In my opion this is the main reason to why Harold lost. His men was majorly cut down in size and being that his army was prodmitatly made up of fryds so there loyalty was doubting.Also they were celebrating there success of winning the battle by getting merry. So aswell as bein exhausted won the battle was due to his tactics and skillfull fighters. It is estimated that that William had 5,000 infantry and 3,000 knights while Harold had about 2, 500 housecarls and over 6,000 members of the fyrd . So prodimataley harolds army were inexperienced fighters whereas willaims were a trained army.The norman army fought on caverlry and had highly skilled archers, whereas the anglo saxon army was made from mainly local men (fyrds) and bretons which were a loyal professional army. Harodls army was not as strong as williams thus why eh lsot the battle. The leaders of the fyrd, (the thegns) ...read more.

Conclusion

He needed to show his followers that his claim was a lawful one, and that he had God on his side. So when he decided on invasion, he took elaborate measures to ensure he had strong support, and even sent an envoy to the Pope asking for his blessing, the pope supported willaims claim , this was a major advantage to willaim as the fighters would have belived that they could win the battle if god was on there side. Also they would have been more likely to fight harder and risk there lives if it meant fighting for god it meant a door open to heaven. During the battle flags with crosses and religious symbols were held. This made the battle look more like a crusade rather than a war. The thought of dying for god grew loyalty with Williams men which reflected in the outcome of the battle. Overall there are many reaons to why William won the battle of Hastings. The Luk and timing is in my opinion the most important reason as without this William would have arrived at Hastings with a saon waiting army and darnet of stood a chance. So without Stamford bridge and the change of weather in that week I would have been surprised if Williams men would have made it past pevansey. Elizabeth Bloxham 25/02/2008 ...read more.

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