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The following people represents a selection of topical, unusual or interesting records from our collection. These records have been selected by our team of curators.

Name:  Edward the Confessor
Nationality:  Anglo-Saxon
Occupation:  King

It is probably fair to regard Edward as one of the better-known Anglo-Saxon kings, as his death set in motion the succession and military events of 1066, which form much of the English national myth. Historically he was a son of Aethelred the Unready and Emma of Normandy, and thereby a stepson of Cnut and half-brother of Harthacnut, whom Edward succeeded. It was during his reign that Westminster Abbey was first commissioned (although the present structure is later) and Edward himself was later considered a saint and even canonised.

Upon his death in 1066, Harold Godwinson of Wessex, Harald Hardrada of Norway and William the Bastard of Normandy all claimed the throne of England. Edward's memory was particularly revered by Henry III of England, who even named his son, later Edward I, in his honour and reconstructed Edward's Westminster Abbey as foundation of the building known today.   [More Detail]