Edward The Conqueror Legal System

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The Golden Ages William the Conqueror was a great admirer of Edward the Confessor and in particular the legislative and court administration system that this last of the House of Wessex had started to put in place to bring order to a kingdom that had been torn apart by the misrule of Canute’s two sons and Aethelred. The Normans were unused to laws as such but for William, given that he had doubled the size of his kingdom overnight, the need to be able to govern at a distance through decree was obvious. His written word must have the force of his physical presence in the future and somehow Edward the Confessor had performed this through the decree of laws. To reinforce his adoption of Edward’s legal system, the Conqueror began openly to…show more content…
Part of this required the eradication of the Plantagenet line and inviting Prince Louis of France to rule on the advice of Langton, the Archbishop of Canterbury and 25 Barons mainly based in East Anglia. This very Norman kingdom needed a Norman legal system and so they looked to Henry I rather than Edward the Confessor as their role model, thus establishing Henry’s reign as a second ‘Golden Age’. The ‘Golden Age’ of Henry I was also seen as a brief period of stability between the Dark Years of Stephen of Blois and the chaos of William Rufus. England was thrown into the first of its many Civil Wars by a dispute over the throne between Stephen, Count of Blois and Eleanor of Aquitane. Stephen had stepped up in 1135 to claim the throne vacated by Henry I, who had died without an heir on the death of his only son when the royal barge sank in a storm (in mysterious circumstances if accounts of the time are to be…show more content…
Whilst the armies of King Stephen and Henry were facing each other and their leaders were attempting to negotiate a treaty to establish both peace and the succession to the kingdom of England, Prince Eustace died. Accounts of the death of Eustace range from natural causes to the prince’s assassination, but the death of Eustace was too timely to have been a coincidence and it took the fight out of Stephen. The King passed over his second son, William, and rapidly agreed to a treaty that would see Henry become his successor. Stephen died a year later in 1154 and Henry was undisputed King of England and Normandy as well as the heir to the growing Angevin Empire in
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