The Battle of Hastings

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  • Created by: Cheyenne
  • Created on: 07-05-13 19:41

Preparation- Who was more prepared?

William (Duke of Normandy) was prepared for battle because he had started to prepare as soon as he discovered Harold (Godwinson) was king. He gathered 696 ships and 7000 soldiers! However, when he was leaving, the winds were blowing against him which gave William the disadvantage of arriving in England late.
Harold was prepared because he had split his army - so that half were south and half were north- as he suspected his enemies' arrival. On the other hand, after fighting Harald Hardraada, Harold and his army were exhausted but they then had to fight a battle with William and his huge army. Thus they were not likely win that battle. I think that William was more prepared.

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The Battle-Key points which affected who won.

In the Saxon army, there were Housecarls who were full time, well trained and well paid. Furthermore, there were Fyrd, unpaid soldiers who were called up when the country was in danger. On the other hand, the Norman army had Spearmen, Archers and Cavalry who were all well trained, well paid and worked full time.  Normans had the advantage from this point of view.                                                                                                                 The Battlefield included a hill surrounded by forest. The Saxon army was at the top of the hill whilst the Normans were positioned at the bottom. Therefore, the Saxons had the advantage because they could build up momentum and force when attacking from the peak.

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The Battle- What happened?

Trumpets were blown to start the battle. The Normans were the first to attack but the English threw javelins and axes from above at the opposition. They thought that William was dead but he took off his helmet and showed them that he was alive.                                                                                            Then, the Normans pretended to flee so that the Saxon army would forget their advantage and run after them. The cavalry turned sharply and as a consequence, cut down a large portion of the army.                                     Finally, the Norman army used their archers to break the shield wall. One of the arrows hits Harold and he is killed.

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After the battle....

By the end of the afternoon, Harold's body had been cut into pieces. William was the new king of England.

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