Monday, November 13, 2017

Trojan Coffin The Normans, Castle SiegeHarald Hardrada

  • Many stories of the fabled 11th-century Norwegian King Harald Hardrada have been told throughout the years, detailing his bravery and ingenuity at combat. During his conquest on the road to becoming the king of Norway, Harald laid siege to an unnamed castle by camping outside and establishing his men for the upcoming battle. 
  • He also had erected a small tent a ways outside the main camp, where he lay sick and possibly dying. Before any battle took place, it was reported that the great king had perished from his illness, and his men ventured toward the castle to tell the news of their commander’s demise. They addressed a large gathering of priests and requested that they allow their fallen commander to be buried within the city.
  • The priests believed that they would receive rich gifts for accommodating the bereaved fighting men and acquiesced. They formed a large procession and took Harald’s ornate coffin into their castle, along with a small group of his men. Once they’d crossed the threshold and entered the castle grounds, Harald’s men immediately barred the gate, called the remaining men to battle, and the good King Harald himself leaped from the coffin and declared that everyone be killed. The castle was taken, and Harald’s legendary exploits continued toward the conquest of England.

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