Alternative History

1066 Harold Godwinson defeats Harald Hardrada at Stamford bridge and William of Normandy at Caldbeck. Harold is excommunicated. Harold institutes reforms which centralise military power in the hands of the Witan.

1067 Civil war in Normandy. Battle of Rouen between Danish-backed faction and French-backed faction. Danish victory gains them Dieppe, the Channel Islands and the northern half of the Cotentin peninsula.

1068 Birth of Edgar Haroldson, Son of King Harold II.

1069 The Isle of Man comes under English domination, the King of Man is charged with the maintenance of a small, but permanent Irish sea fleet. Harold´s illegitimate son Harold Godwin MacHarold is named King of Man.

Siege of Dieppe by the French. 16 year old Phillip of France is killed as the siege is broken by Hoel of Brittany and the Danish Earl of Cherbourg. Hugh II (aged 13) ascends to the throne, with his mother as regent. Normandy forms part of Kingdom of Denmark.

1070 Harold meets with Malcolm III of Scotland at Whitby Abbey and agrees the border between Scotland and England. Cumberland and Northumbria north of the crest of the Lammermuir hills are ceded to Scotland. Malcolm marries Gytha of Wessex, Harold's daughter.

Birth of Gyrth Haroldsoson, Son of King Harold II.

1072 First trade contact between Manx boats and Iceland.

1075 First trade contact between Manx boats and Greenland.

Battle of Lewis, Edmund MacHarold defeats Lewismen. Earl Erland of Orkney is forced to alllow English and Manx ships pass unmolested through the Hebrides. Betrothal of Harold Haroldson to Princess of Norway.

1079 The pope recognises Hoel I as King of Brittany.

1081 Death of King Harold Godwinson known as "Harold the Great" or Harold "North Star".

The Witan elect Harold Haroldson as king, though some believe Harold Godwine MacHarold was the dead King´s chosen successor. Harold Godwine MacHarold, Leofwine and Gyrth Godwinson and Waltheof of Huntingdon and the Scottish Marches rebel against the Witan declaring Harold Godwine MacHarold King. Edmund MacHarold (now Earl of Cornwall), Magnus MacHarold (Earl of Devon), Ulf Haroldson (Earl of Wessex), and the Earls of Northumbria and Mercia support Harold Haroldson. The Witan Host largely support Harold Haroldson.

Harold Godwine MacHarold crowned in Westminster. Harold Haroldson crowned at Winchester.

Meols and Chester taken by Manx troops and Irish mercenaries, serving Harold Godwine MacHarold.

Fierce winter from Nov-Mar. Many die of cold and hunger.

1081-1086 "The war of the Godwinings" Civil war in England.

1082 April. Battle of Catterick, Waltheof and Scottish "volunteers" (pro Harold Godwine MacHarold) defeated by Aelfgar Morcarson, Son of Morcar Northumbria, and the cavalry garrison based at Leeds. Waltheof escapes and burns Durham in retreat.

May. Battle of Knutsford. Earl Edwin of Mercia (pro Harold Haroldson) is killed in a fierce battle against MacHarrold's Manx and Irish supporters.

May. "The Battle of the Three Brothers". Edmund and Magnus MacHarold defeat "King" Harold Godwine MacHarold and forces loyal to Leofwine and Gyrth Godwinson. Gyrth Godwinson is killed and Magnus MacHarold loses a hand, his life being saved by the intervention of a Jewish doctor. Harold Godwine MacHarold besieged in London for two weeks.

June. Breton and Irish forces land in Cornwall, trying to rouse the Cornish in rebellion. Instead a pro-Harold Haroldson guerrilla war breaks out, led by Maelcun of Exeter and Geront An Gof.

August. Battle of Bodmin Moor. Edmund MacHarrold defeats Breton invasion. King Harold III and Ulf Haroldson defend the borders from Welsh incursions.

1083 Battle of Leicester, King Harold Haroldson and his brother Ulf are defeated by Ethelread Gyrthson and Harold Godwine MacHarold, commanding a force of Norwegian mercenaries and the army of East Anglia. Only the cavalry forces of the Haroldsons escape a terrible slaughter. 3 weeks later Leicester is retaken, after the battle of Ratby, in which Edmund MacHarrold and the Haroldson twins, with Welsh and Breton allies, route Ethelread Gyrthson and the Norwegians. Harold Godwine MacHarold has to escape from Huntingdon, and takes refuge in Ely. Northampton and Huntingdom come under Haroldson's control.

1084 Ulf Haroldson killed by Manxmen at Chester. An unstable border established between the two factions. The south-east Midlands suffer constant border warfare. Hereward the Wake leads border warfare for the Harold Godwin MacHarold faction.

1086 King Harold III and Harold Godwine MacHarold both killed at Wallbrook near London. Witan of London declares Magnus MacHarold "King Magnus I". Edmund MacHarold is named Earl of Bretland, comprising of Devon, Cornwall, Somersaete and western Dorsaete. These are the areas of England which still maintain a substantial British speaking population.

King Alonso of Castille is defeated in the battle of Sagrajas by an Almoravid and Andalusian alliance. He recalls Rodrigo Diaz de Vivar and his private army to Castille after years of exile. Jewish and Christian refugees flee Almoravid controlled Andalusia.

See also