HAROLD AND WILLIAM: The Battle for England, A.D. 1064–1066

Benton Rain Patterson, Author . Cooper Square $28.95 (256p) ISBN 978-0-8154-1165-9

The most famous year in English history, 1066 witnessed the epic confrontation between William, Duke of Normandy, and King Harold, who, killed by the invading Normans during the Battle of Hastings, would be the last Anglo-Saxon ruler of England. An emeritus professor of journalism at the University of Florida, Patterson is unabashedly pro-Harold: "The wrong side, the wrong cause, the wrong man won." Indeed, Patterson refers to William as "the Bastard," and often highlights the Norman's brutality. This anti-William bias, however, doesn't stop Patterson from weaving a highly entertaining narrative. In 1064, England's King Edward sent Harold, who was then earl of Wessex, to Normandy to meet with Duke William. On his way, Harold was kidnapped and held for ransom. William paid the ransom, and Harold then swore an oath to support the duke in his bid to become king of England after Edward's death. Harold would later claim that he swore this oath under duress. For his part, William would call Harold a liar. In January 1066, King Edward died, naming Harold his successor. Upon hearing the news, an outraged William immediately began preparing for an invasion of England. Meanwhile, King Harold's own brother Tostig, with the aid of the king of Norway, led an armed rebellion against the new king. Harold crushed Tostig at the Battle of Stamford Bridge. Three days later, William landed his invasion force near Hastings. Harold marched his exhausted army south to meet the Norman foe. Patterson does an excellent job describing the back-and-forth struggle of the bloody battle in this highly accessible work of popular history. 30 b&w illus. not seen by PW. (Nov.)

Reviewed on: 10/22/2001
Release date: 09/01/2001
Show other formats
Paperback - 160 pages - 978-0-7524-2316-6
Hardcover - 256 pages - 978-0-7524-2984-7
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Email Address


Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.