Edward The Confessor
Edward the Confessor was born in 1005CE. At the time of his birth Danish King ruled England.
The Danish kings who followed Canute were not like him.
They were cruel, unjust rulers and all the people of England hated them.
So when in the year 1042 the last of them died, Noble elected Edward the confessor, the son of the Saxon Ethelred, as king.
He is known in history as Edward the Confessor.
He lived a holy life and after his death was made a saint by the Church, with the title of “the Confessor.”
Rise of Edward the Confessor
Though born in England, he passed the greater part of his life in Normandy as an exile from his native land.
Thirty-eight years old Edward returned from Normandy to become king.
As he had lived so long in Normandy he always seemed more like a Norman than one of English birth.
He generally spoke the French language and he chose Normans to fill many of the highest offices in his kingdom.
Edward the Confessor Defeat Pirate
For the first eight years of his reign there was perfect peace in his kingdom.
Though sometime pirates from the North Sea made occasional attacks the counties of Kent and Essex.
A barbarian named Kerdric lead these Norwegians pirates.
They would come sweeping down upon the Kentish coast in many ships.
Later they made a landing in a place with no soldiers, and fall upon the towns and plunder them.
Then, as swiftly and suddenly as they had come, they would sail away homeward, before they could be captured.
One day Kerdic’s fleet arrived off the coast. He encountered no opposing force.
The pirates landed and started toward the nearest town to plunder it.
By a quick march a body of English soldiers reached the town before the pirates, and when the latter arrived they found a strong force drawn up to give them battle.
A short struggle took place. English slain more than half of the pirates and took the remainder prisoners.
After the prisoners had been secured the English ships that were stationed on the coast attacked the pirate fleet and destroyed it.
Edward Involvement in Scotland
Edward took part in the events upon which Shakespeare, five hundred years later, founded his famous tragedy of “Macbeth.”
There lived in Scotland during his reign an ambitious nobleman named Macbeth, who invited Duncan, the King of Scotland, to his castle and murdered him.
He tried to make it appear that the murder had been committed by Duncan’s attendants and he caused the king’s son and heir, Prince Malcolm, to flee from the land.
He then made himself king of Scotland.
Malcolm hastened to England and appealed to King Edward for help.
Malcolm with this support attacked Macbeth, and after several well-fought battles drove the usurper from Scotland and took possession of the throne.
Edward the Confessor Contribution to Christianity
Edward did a great deal during his reign to aid the cause of Christianity.
He rebuilt the ancient Westminster Abbey in London and erected churches and monasteries in different parts of England.
Years after his death the English people, when suffering from bad government, would exclaim, “Oh, for the good laws and customs of Edward the Confessor!”
What he really did was to have the old laws faithfully carried out.
He died in 1066 and his family buried him in Westminster Abbey.