King Edward the Confessor of England 1002 – 1066

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Edward the Confessor

Father – King Aethelred the Unready
Mother – Emma of Normandy
Spouse – Edith of Wessex
Children – No children
King of England – 1042 – 1066
Predecessor – Harthacnut
Successor – Harold Godwinson



1002 or 1003
Born the eldest son of King Aethelred the Unready by his second wife, Emma of Normandy.
1013 (Late)
King Aethelred and his entire family fled to Normandy following an attempted invasion of England by Sweyn Forkbeard.
1014 (February)
Sweyn Forkbeard died and Aethelred and his family returned to England
1016 (23rd April)
King Athelred died and Edward’s half-brother, Aethelred’s eldest son by his first wife, Edmund Ironside became King.
1016 (18th October)
Battle of Assandun – Cnut, son of Sweyn Forkbeard, was victorious over the Anglo Saxons led by Edmund. In order to maintain peace Edmund agreed to share control of England with Canute.
1016 (30th November)
Edmund died and Cnut became King of all England
1016 (December)
Edward, his younger brother Alfred and their sister Goda were sent back to Normandy
1017 (July)
Edward’s mother, Emma of Normandy, married Cnut
1018 (date unknown)
Edward’s half-brother Harthacnut was born to his mother Emma and Cnut
1035 (12th November)
Cnut died and Harthacnut was proclaimed King. However because he was absent in Denmark, Cnut’s son by his first wife, Harold, was appointed regent.
1035 (late December)
Edward’s younger brother, Alfred, sailed to England to dispute the appointment of Harold as regent. He was met by Earl Godwin who blinded him and sent him to Ely where he later died.
1037 (date unknown)
Harthacnut was still in Denmark so Harold was crowned King Harold I
1040 (17th March)
Harold I died and Harthacnut became King
1041 (date unknown)
Edward was recalled to England where he was nominated as Harthacnut’s heir.
1042 (8th June)
Harthacnut died and Edward became King
1043 (3rd April)
Crowned King at Winchester Cathedral
1045 (23rd January)
Married Edith, daughter of Earl Godwin
1046 (date unknown)
Banished Godwin’s son Sweyn
1051 (September)
Edward was visited by some Norman friends who became involved in a drunken fight in Dover and several Normans were killed. Edward ordered Godwin to punish the townspeople of Dover but Godwin refused and raised an army against the King. Civil war was avoided when the Witan stepped in and banished Godwin and his family.
1052 (date unknown)
Godwin and his sons returned at the head of an army. Edward was unable to raise sufficient forces to challenge the Godwin family and so had to negotiate a truce. It was agreed that Godwin and his sons could return and their lands would be restored and Edward would drastically reduce the number of Norman advisors.
1052 (date unknown)
Edward devoted much of his time to the rebuilding of St Peter’s Abbey. The new building was to be called the Collegiate Church of St Peter at Westminster but would be known as Westminster Abbey.
1053 (15th April)
Earl Godwin of Wessex died. His son Harold Godwinson succeeded him.
1054 (during)
King Edward the Confessor learned that the Edward, son of Edmund Ironside, was still alive and sent Ealdred, Bishop of Worcester to effect his return to England.
1056 (during)
King Edward the Confessor of England sent Harold Godwinson to try to negotiate the return of Edward and his family to England. It is almost certain that King Edward wanted to make Edward his heir.
1057 (late)
Edward the Exile returned to England with his wife Agatha, son Edgar Aetheling, and daughters Margaret and Cristina.
1057 (19th April)
Edward the Exile died. There are no records of his being in poor health and it is likely that he was murdered. He was buried in St Paul’s Cathedral.
1065 (28th December)
Westminster Abbey was consecrated
1066 (4th January)
King Edward died. He was buried in Westminster Abbey. He was succeeded by his brother-in-law, Harold Godwinson as Harold II



Published May 10, 2015 @ 3:28 pm – Updated – Jun 11, 2019 @ 10:20 pm


Harvard Reference for this page:

Heather Y Wheeler. (2015 – 2018). King Edward the Confessor of England 1002 – 1066. Available: Last accessed July 18th, 2019


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