Ancestral Trails 2016 » WILLIAM THE CONQUEROR (1024-1087)

Données personnelles WILLIAM THE CONQUEROR 

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Ancêtres (et descendants) de WILLIAM THE CONQUEROR


(1) Il a/avait une relation avec MATILDA DE FLANDERS.


  1. Cecilia DE NORMANDY  1056-1126
  2. Richard DE NORMANDY  1055-1081
  3. Agatha DE NORMANDY  1071-< 1080
  4. Constance DE NORMANDY  1061-1090
  5. William Rufus DE NORMANDY  1057-1100
  7. ADELA DE NORMANDY  1063-???? 
  8. Robert Curthose DE NORMANDY  1054-???? 
  9. Matilda DE NORMANDY  1065-???? 

(2) Il avait une relation avec ??.


  1. Alberta of ENGLAND  ± 1045-????

(3) Il a/avait une relation avec MAUD D'INGELRIC.


  1. WILLIAM PEVEREL  1045-???? 


Illegitimate son of Robert II Duke of Normandy and his mistress Arlette Edward "the Confessor" King of England acknowledged William as successor to the English throne on several occasions, maybe for the first time during his visit to England in 1051 which is recorded in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle

1064-1065 Duke William interceded with Guy de Ponthieu Comte d'Abbeville to secure the release of Harold Godwinsson from captivity in Normandy, in return for Harold's acknowledgement of William as successor to the English crown (according to the portrayal of the event in the Bayeux tapestry). Harold Godwinsson's visit to Normandy, and swearing allegiance to Duke William, is recorded by William of Jumièges.

According to Eadmer of Canterbury, the reason for Harold's visit was to negotiate the release of his brother Wulfnoth and nephew Haakon, both of whom had been hostages in Normandy since 1051.

On his deathbed, King Edward "the Confessor" bequeathed the kingdom of England to Harold Godwinsson. Duke William branded Harold a perjurer and appealed to Pope Alexander II for support. After receiving a papal banner in response to his request, William gathered a sizable army during summer 1066 in preparation for invasion. After some delay due to unfavourable weather conditions, the army set sail for England from Saint-Valéry-sur-Somme 28 Sep 1066.

William defeated and killed King Harold at Hastings 14 Oct 1066, marched north to Canterbury, then west to Winchester where he captured the royal treasury. He proceeded to London where he was crowned 25 Dec 1066 as WILLIAM I "the Conqueror" King of England at Westminster Abbey 9 Sep 1087 Fell from his horse and died from wounds received at the siege of Mantes at the Priory of St Guavas, Rouen. In his will he left Normandy to his eldest son Robert and England to his second surviving son William. SOURCE: Foundation of Medieval Genealogy

Some doubt exists over how many daughters there were. This list includes some entries which are obscure.
Robert Curthose (c. 1054 - 1134), Duke of Normandy, married Sybil of Conversano , daughter of Geoffrey of Conversano
Adeliza (or Alice) (c. 1055 - ?), reportedly betrothed to Harold II of England (Her existence is in some doubt.)
Cecilia (or Cecily) (c. 1056 - 1126), Abbess of Holy Trinity, Caen
William Rufus (1056 - 1100), King of the English
Richard, Duke of Bernay (1057 - c. 1081), killed by a stag in New Forest
Adela (c. 1062 - 1138), married Stephen, Count of Blois
Agatha (c. 1064 - c. 1080), betrothed to (1) Harold of Wessex , (2) Alfonso VI of Castile
Constance (c. 1066 - 1090), married Alan IV Fergent , Duke of Brittany ; poisoned, possibly by her own servants
Matilda (very obscure, her existence is in some doubt)
Henry Beauclerc (1068-1135), King of England, married (1) Edith of Scotland , daughter of Malcolm III, King of Scotland , (2) Adeliza of Louvain

Gundred (c. 1063 - 1085), wife of William de Warenne (c. 1055 - 1088), was formerly thought of as being yet another of Matilda's daughters, with speculation that she was William I's full daughter, a stepdaughter, or even a foundling or adopted daughter. However, this connection to William I has now been firmly debunked--see Gundred's discussion page for further information.

Matilda was a seventh generation direct descendent of Alfred the Great . Her marriage to William strengthened his claim to the throne. All sovereigns of England, Great Britain and the United Kingdom have been descended from her, as is the present Queen Elizabeth II .

William I (c. 1028 - 9 September 1087), usually known as William the Conqueror and sometimes William the Bastard, was the first Norman King of England, reigning from 1066 until his death in 1087. A descendant of Rollo, he was Duke of Normandy from 1035 onward. After a long struggle to establish his power, by 1060 his hold on Normandy was secure, and he launched the Norman conquest of England six years later. The rest of his life was marked by struggles to consolidate his hold over England and his continental lands and by difficulties with his eldest son.

William was the son of the unmarried Robert I, Duke of Normandy, by Robert's mistress Herleva. His illegitimate status and his youth caused some difficulties for him after he succeeded his father, as did the anarchy that plagued the first years of his rule. During his childhood and adolescence, members of the Norman aristocracy battled each other, both for control of the child duke and for their own ends. In 1047 William was able to quash a rebellion and begin to establish his authority over the duchy, a process that was not complete until about 1060. His marriage in the 1050s to Matilda of Flanders provided him with a powerful ally in the neighbouring county of Flanders. By the time of his marriage, William was able to arrange the appointment of his supporters as bishops and abbots in the Norman church. His consolidation of power allowed him to expand his horizons, and by 1062 William secured control of the neighbouring county of Maine.

In the 1050s and early 1060s William became a contender for the throne of England, then held by the childless Edward the Confessor, his first cousin once removed. There were other potential claimants, including the powerful English earl Harold Godwinson, who was named the next king by Edward on the latter's deathbed in January 1066. William argued that Edward had previously promised the throne to him and that Harold had sworn to support William's claim. William built a large fleet and invaded England in September 1066, decisively defeating and killing Harold at the Battle of Hastings on 14 October 1066. After further military efforts William was crowned king on Christmas Day 1066, in London. He made arrangements for the governance of England in early 1067 before returning to Normandy. Several unsuccessful rebellions followed, but by 1075 William's hold on England was mostly secure, allowing him to spend the majority of the rest of his reign on the continent.

William's final years were marked by difficulties in his continental domains, troubles with his eldest son, and threatened invasions of England by the Danes. In 1086 William ordered the compilation of the Domesday Book, a survey listing all the landholdings in England along with their pre-Conquest and current holders. William died in September 1087 while leading a campaign in northern France, and was buried in Caen. His reign in England was marked by the construction of castles, the settling of a new Norman nobility on the land, and change in the composition of the English clergy. He did not try to integrate his various domains into one empire but instead continued to administer each part separately. William's lands were divided after his death: Normandy went to his eldest son, Robert Curthose, and his second surviving son, William Rufus, received England.

William as king - Changes in England
As part of his efforts to secure England, William ordered many castles, keeps, and mottes built - among them the central keep of the Tower of London, the White Tower. These fortifications allowed Normans to retreat into safety when threatened with rebellion and allowed garrisons to be protected while they occupied the countryside. The early castles were simple earth and timber constructions, later replaced with stone structures.

At first, most of the newly settled Normans kept household knights and did not settle their retainers with fiefs of their own, but gradually these household knights came to be granted lands of their own, a process known as subinfeudation. William also required his newly created magnates to contribute fixed quotas of knights towards not only military campaigns but also castle garrisons. This method of organising the military forces was a departure from the pre-Conquest English practice of basing military service on territorial units such as the hide.

By William's death, after weathering a series of rebellions, most of the native Anglo-Saxon aristocracy had been replaced by Norman and other continental magnates. Not all of the Normans who accompanied William in the initial conquest acquired large amounts of land in England. Some appear to have been reluctant to take up lands in a kingdom that did not always appear pacified. Although some of the newly rich Normans in England came from William's close family or from the upper Norman nobility, others were from relatively humble backgrounds. William granted some lands to his continental followers from the holdings of one or more specific Englishmen; at other times, he granted a compact grouping of lands previously held by many different Englishmen to one Norman follower, often to allow for the consolidation of lands around a strategically placed castle.

The medieval chronicler William of Malmesbury says that the king also seized and depopulated many miles of land (36 parishes), turning it into the royal New Forest region to support his enthusiastic enjoyment of hunting. Modern historians have come to the conclusion that the New Forest depopulation was greatly exaggerated. Most of the lands of the New Forest are poor agricultural lands, and archaeological and geographic studies have shown that the New Forest was likely sparsely settled when it was turned into a royal forest. William was known for his love of hunting, and he introduced the forest law into areas of the country, regulating who could hunt and what could be hunted.

Domesday Book
At Christmas 1085, William ordered the compilation of a survey of the landholdings held by himself and by his vassals throughout his kingdom, organised by counties. It resulted in a work now known as the Domesday Book. The listing for each county gives the holdings of each landholder, grouped by owners. The listings describe the holding, who owned the land before the Conquest, its value, what the tax assessment was, and usually the number of peasants, ploughs, and any other resources the holding had. Towns were listed separately. All the English counties south of the River Tees and River Ribble are included, and the whole work seems to have been mostly completed by 1 August 1086, when the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle records that William received the results and that all the chief magnates swore the Salisbury Oath, a renewal of their oaths of allegiance. William's exact motivation in ordering the survey is unclear, but it probably had several purposes, such as making a record of feudal obligations and justifying increased taxation

Death and aftermath
William left England towards the end of 1086. Following his arrival back on the continent he married his daughter Constance to Alan Fergant, the Duke of Brittany, in furtherance of his policy of seeking allies against the French kings. William's son Robert, still allied with the French king, appears to have been active in stirring up trouble, enough so that William led an expedition against the French Vexin in July 1087. While seizing Mantes, William either fell ill or was injured by the pommel of his saddle. He was taken to the priory of Saint Gervase at Rouen, where he died on 9 September 1087. Knowledge of the events preceding his death is confused because there are two different accounts. Orderic Vitalis preserves a lengthy account, complete with speeches made by many of the principals, but this is likely more of an account of how a king should die than of what actually happened. The other, the De Obitu Willelmi, or On the Death of William, has been shown to be a copy of two 9th-century accounts with names changed.

William left Normandy to Robert, and the custody of England was given to William's second surviving son, also called William, on the assumption that he would become king. The youngest son, Henry, received money. After entrusting England to his second son, the elder William sent the younger William back to England on 7 or 8 September, bearing a letter to Lanfranc ordering the archbishop to aid the new king. Other bequests included gifts to the Church and money to be distributed to the poor. William also ordered that all of his prisoners be released, including his half-brother Odo.

Disorder followed William's death; everyone who had been at his deathbed left the body at Rouen and hurried off to attend to their own affairs. Eventually, the clergy of Rouen arranged to have the body sent to Caen, where William had desired to be buried in his foundation of the Abbaye-aux-Hommes. The funeral, attended by the bishops and abbots of Normandy as well as his son Henry, was disturbed by the assertion of a citizen of Caen who alleged that his family had been illegally despoiled of the land on which the church was built. After hurried consultations, the allegation was shown to be true, and the man was compensated. A further indignity occurred when the corpse was lowered into the tomb. The corpse was too large for the space, and when attendants forced the body into the tomb it burst, spreading a disgusting odour throughout the church.

William's grave is currently marked by a marble slab with a Latin inscription dating from the early 19th century. The tomb has been disturbed several times since 1087, the first time in 1522 when the grave was opened on orders from the papacy. The intact body was restored to the tomb at that time, but in 1562, during the French Wars of Religion, the grave was reopened and the bones scattered and lost, with the exception of one thigh bone. This lone relic was reburied in 1642 with a new marker, which was replaced 100 years later with a more elaborate monument. This tomb was again destroyed during the French Revolution but was eventually replaced with the current marker.

The immediate consequence of William's death was a war between his sons Robert and William over control of England and Normandy. Even after the younger William's death in 1100 and the succession of his youngest brother Henry as king, Normandy and England remained contested between the brothers until Robert's capture by Henry at the Battle of Tinchebray in 1106. The difficulties over the succession led to a loss of authority in Normandy, with the aristocracy regaining much of the power they had lost to the elder William. His sons also lost much of their control over Maine, which revolted in 1089 and managed to remain mostly free of Norman influence thereafter.

The impact on England of William's conquest was profound; changes in the Church, aristocracy, culture, and language of the country have persisted into modern times. The Conquest brought the kingdom into closer contact with France and forged ties between France and England that lasted throughout the Middle Ages. Another consequence of William's invasion was the sundering of the formerly close ties between England and Scandinavia. William's government blended elements of the English and Norman systems into a new one that laid the foundations of the later medieval English kingdom. How abrupt and far-reaching were the changes is still a matter of debate among historians, with some such as Richard Southern claiming that the Conquest was the single most radical change in European history between the Fall of Rome and the 20th century. Others, such as H. G. Richardson and G. O. Sayles, see the changes brought about by the Conquest as much less radical than Southern suggests. The historian Eleanor Searle describes William's invasion as "a plan that no ruler but a Scandinavian would have considered".

William's reign has caused historical controversy since before his death. William of Poitiers wrote glowingly of William's reign and its benefits, but the obituary notice for William in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle condemns William in harsh terms. In the years since the Conquest, politicians and other leaders have used William and the events of his reign to illustrate political events throughout English history. During the reign of Queen Elizabeth I of England, Archbishop Matthew Parker saw the Conquest as having corrupted a purer English Church, which Parker attempted to restore. During the 17th and 18th centuries, some historians and lawyers saw William's reign as imposing a "Norman yoke" on the native Anglo-Saxons, an argument that continued during the 19th century with further elaborations along nationalistic lines. These various controversies have led to William being seen by some historians either as one of the creators of England's greatness or as inflicting one of the greatest defeats in English history. Others have viewed William as an enemy of the English constitution, or alternatively as its creator.

Family and children
William and his wife Matilda of Flanders had at least nine children. The birth order of the sons is clear, but no source gives the relative order of birth of the daughters.

Robert was born between 1051 and 1054, died 10 February 1134. Duke of Normandy, married Sybilla of Conversano, daughter of Geoffrey, Count of Conversano.
Richard was born before 1056, died around 1075.
William was born between 1056 and 1060, died 2 August 1100. King of England, killed in the New Forest.
Henry was born in late 1068, died 1 December 1135. King of England, married Edith of Scotland, daughter of Malcolm III of Scotland. His second wife was Adeliza of Louvain.
Adeliza (or Adelida, Adelaide) died before 1113, reportedly betrothed to Harold II of England, probably a nun of Saint Léger at Préaux.
Cecilia (or Cecily) was born before 1066, died 1127, Abbess of Holy Trinity, Caen.
Matilda was born around 1061, died perhaps about 1086. Mentioned in Domesday Book as a daughter of William.
Constance died 1090, married Alan IV Fergent, Duke of Brittany.
Adela died 1137, married Stephen, Count of Blois.
(Possibly) Agatha, the betrothed of Alfonso VI of León and Castile.

There is no evidence of any illegitimate children born to William.
SOURCE: Wikipedia - (see complete article on weblinks)

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Les sources

  1. North America, Family Histories, 1500-2000,, Book Title: The Tracy Family / The Winslow Family /
  2. Foundation for Medieval Genealogy
    His birth date is estimated from William of Malmesbury, according towhom Guillaume was born of a concubine and was seven years old when his father left for Jerusalem, and Orderic Vitalis, who states that he was eight years old at the time

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La publication Ancestral Trails 2016 est composée par (contacter l'auteur).
Lors de la copie des données de cet arbre généalogique, veuillez inclure une référence à l'origine:
Patti Lee Salter, "Ancestral Trails 2016", base de données, Généalogie Online ( : consultée 7 février 2023), "WILLIAM THE CONQUEROR (1024-1087)".