Michael Linton's Bayeux Tapestry: 1066 - A Medieval Mosaic and Puzzles
WILLIAM THE CONQUEROR
AND THE RULE OF THE NORMANS
FIRST PUBLISHED IN 1908
BARNES & NOBLE, Inc.
NEW YORK PUBLISHERS & BOOKSELLERS SINCE 1873
This electronic edition
was prepared by
Michael A. Linton, 2006
IN attempting to write a life of William the Conqueror, one is confronted, at the outset, by a question of considerable urgency. The mere details of the King's history, if full discussion were given to all matters which have been the subjects of controversy, would far exceed the possible limits of a volume to be included in the series to which the present book belongs. On the other hand, a life of William the Conqueror which ignored the changes in constitutional organisation and social life which followed the events of 1066 would obviously be a very imperfect thing. Accordingly, I have reserved the last three chapters of the book for some examination of these questions; and I hope that the footnotes to the text may serve as, in some sort, a guide to the more difficult problems arising out of the Conqueror's life and reign.
There is no need to enter here upon a description of the authorities on which the following book is based. For the most part they have been the subjects of thorough discussion; and, with one exception, they are sufficiently accessible in modern editions. The writs and charters issued over England by William I. are only to be found scattered among a great number of independent publications; and the necessity of forming a collection of these documents has materially delayed the appearance of the present work.
It remains that I should here tender my thanks to all those who, have rendered assistance to me during the writing of this book. In particular I would express my gratitude to my friend Mr. Roland Berkeley-Calcott, and to the general editor of this series, Mr. H. W. C. Davis. To Mr. Davis I am indebted for invaluable help and advice given to me both during the preparation of the book and in the correction of the proof-sheets. To those modern writers whose works have re-created the history of the eleventh century in England and Normandy I hope that my references may be a sufficient acknowledgment.
F. M. S.
SOUTH HILL, SOUTHWELL, NOTTS, AUGUST 27, 1908.