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Harold II: The Doomed Saxon King

3.77  ·  Rating Details ·  30 Ratings  ·  4 Reviews
Harold Godwinson was king of England for less than a year and failed to defend England from William the Conqueror's invading Norman army in 1066, an army that wreaked havoc across the country and changed the political history of England forever. Indeed, 1066 was so critical a turning point that it marked the end of the Anglo-Saxon epoch. "Harold II: The Doomed Saxon King" ...more
Hardcover, 319 pages
Published October 1st 2005 by The History Press Ltd (first published 2005)
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Pete daPixie
Dec 10, 2008 Pete daPixie rated it really liked it
Shelves: history-a-s
This is the best Peter Rex book I've read. Excellent. Two dates in English history with monumental future implications. 1066 & 1485. Rex takes us through the Anglo-Danish period from Aethelred, through Knutr and the foundation of the Godwin dynasty.
The reign of the Confessor and Harold,s emergence as head of an English state. King for 9 months and 9 days with the tumult of Fulford,Stamford Bridge and Senlac.
A very thought provoking epilogue with a 'what if'. What if Hardrada and William had
May 21, 2009 Graham rated it it was amazing
A great, scholarly biography of the doomed English king. At first, I struggled to get into this book thanks to the usual reasons: dense, wordy text, information overload, no pictures (yep, I'm that shallow). After the first couple of chapters, I found that the author started getting into his stride, and then the book became fun.

It's packed with a wealth of carefully-sourced detail along with arguments made by Rex that I found no reason to disagree with: he's a meticulous, imaginative researcher
Mercedes Rochelle
Nov 27, 2015 Mercedes Rochelle rated it really liked it
I'm not quite sure where I would put this volume in my own line-up of pre-conquest history books. On the one hand, it covered the issues intelligently and carefully. On the other hand, many of the major books he cites in his bibliography are already on my bookshelf...especially the 20th century sources. So on the one hand, on an information gathering mission I didn't learn anything majorly new. Nonetheless, I placed a lot of bookmarks which means he touched on little details that fleshed out my ...more
Jul 10, 2011 Kari rated it liked it
Shelves: history
This book had good points such the use of different sources and detailed explanations of information on the subject but sadly these were vastly outweighed by the bad! Peter Rex was extremely repetitive to the point where I actually doubted myself and had to skip back a few pages to make sure I wasn't somehow re-reading what I had already read! Two of the chapters said essentially the same thing just many, many times over so that I got extremely frustrated. Some points weren't even re-worded but ...more
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