Hail the Usurper!
King Harold Godwinson
Str 5 Will 3
Dex 4 HP 8
Int 2 AP 16
If Harold Godwinson makes two successful
melee attacks in a row, +1 damage to
the second attack.
Born in 1020 to the Earl of Essex Godwin and his wife the shieldmaiden Gytha Thorkelsdóttir, the daughter of Thorkel and foster-sister of Thorfinn The Mighty. Harold had numerous siblings including Edith of Wessex, the wife of King Edward the Confessor of England, Sweyn, Earl of Mercia, Tostig, Earl of Northumbria, Gyrth Godwinson, Leofwine Godwinson, Earl of Kent, Wulfnoth, and his youngest brother, . In the year 1044 Harald became the Earl of East Anglia. He fought in numerous battles against King Magnus the Good of Norway from 1045-1046 AD.
The prince became the Earl of Wessex upon his father’s death in the year 1053. He was named the Earl of Hereford in the year 1058. King Edward the Confessor later successfully betrothed him to William the Bastard’s eldest daughter Adeliza.
Earl Harold led the armies of his brother-in-law King Edward into the Welsh kingdom where he eventually defeated and killed Prince Gruffydd ap Llywelyn in 1063 at the Battle of Cadair Berwyn.
A year later he nearly lost his life when his ship sunk off the northern coast Normandy. He eventually washed ashore near Picardy in the France surviving on shellfish and onions found on the side of the road before he was able to find a ship back to England. In 1065 he led an army of 5,000 housecarls into Northumbria where he eventually dethroned and exiled his brother Tostig the Jarl of Northumbria.
Tostig became his mortal enemy thereafter, first fleeing to Norway where he gathered ships and men to raid England in the spring of 1066. He was defeated by Morcar the Earl of Northumbria and Edwin the Earl of Mercia and forced to flee to Alba under the protection of King Malcolm III. Earl Tostig was to be killed in September of 1066 fighting along King Harold Hardrada of Norway at the Battle of Stamford Bridge in Yorkshire,
Earl Harold succeeded King Edward I as King of England upon his death in the winter of 1066. The Norman monk Orderic Vitalis wrote that Harold was a man of honor who was “very tall and handsome, remarkable for his physical strength, his courage and eloquence, his ready jests and acts of valour.”
Ruling for only half of year in 1066, he became the last Saxon King of England attempting unsuccessfully to drive the invasion of the Normans into the sea in that very same year. He was killed by an arrow to the face whilst in combat against the Norman invaders of William the Bastard at the Battle of Hastings, 1066 AD. Known also as the Battle of Senlac Hill, King Harold’s body was later trampled and mutilated before William claimed victory.
His wife Edith took his two youngest songs, Harold and Ulf into exile where she died in 1086. He had five sons in all, Godwine, Edmund, Magnus, Harold, and Ulf, and two daughters, the maidens Gunhild & Gytha.