Key Events of the Period
Date Event
1065 King Edward the Confessor dies.
26th September 1066 King Harold II of England defeats the Viking King Harold Hardrada at the Battle of Stamford Bridge.
28th September 1066 Duke William of Normandy invades England, landing his ships at Pevensey on the south coast.
14th October 1066 The Battle of Hastings takes place and King Harold II is killed.
25th December 1066 William is crowned King of England at Westminster Abbey.
1075 The Tower of London is built.
1085 The Bayeux Tapestry is embroidered.
August 1086 The first draft of the Domesday Book is completed.
9th September 1087 William II becomes king.
2nd August 1100 Henry I becomes king.
9th May 1131 Tintern Abbey in south Wales is founded.
1132 Fountains Abbey and Rievaulx Abbey in Yorkshire are founded.
22nd December 1135 Stephen becomes king.
1141 Empress Matilda becomes the first female ruler of England for a short time between February and November until Stephen agrees that her son, Henry, can succeed him as king.
25th October 1154 Henry II becomes king.
29th December 1170 The Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Beckett, is murdered after he gets into conflict with King Henry II over the rights and privileges of the church.
6th July 1189 Richard I, the Lionheart becomes king.
1198 The Great Seal of England, featuring three lions, is established.
6th April 1199 King John becomes King of England.
19th June 1215 The Magna Carta is signed by King John at Runnymede, near Windsor.
1216 The reign of King Henry III of England begins. Because he is only 9 years old though, William Marshal, the Earl of Pembroke and Henry’s guardian, initially rules for him.
16th November 1272 Edward I becomes king.
7th July 1307 Edward II becomes king.
1315 The Great Famine starts with many people dying of starvation as long periods of bad weather ruin the harvest.
1st February 1327 Edward III becomes king after Parliament agrees to remove King Edward II.
1327 The cannon is used for the first time as a weapon.
1337 The Hundred Years’ War series of wars begins between England and France over who has the right to become the new King of France.
June 1348 The Black Death arrives in England.
22nd June 1377 Richard II becomes king.
June 1381 The Peasants’ Revolt occurs.
30th September 1399 Henry IV becomes king after King Richard II resigns.
21st March 1413 Henry V becomes king.
25th October 1415 King Henry V’s army defeats France at the Battle of Agincourt. The longbow was an important weapon for killing and winning this battle.
31st August 1422 Henry VI becomes king.
1453 The Hundred Years’ War ends 116 years after beginning.
22nd May 1455 The Wars of the Roses start with the First Battle of St Albans.
4th March 1461 Edward IV becomes king.
29th March 1461 The Battle of Towton takes place, affirming Edward IV’s right to the throne.
30th October 1470 Henry VI becomes king again, in act known as the readeption.
11th April 1471 Edward IV becomes king again.
14th April 1471 The Battle of Barnet takes place.
21st May 1471 Henry VI dies, likely murdered under King Edward IV’s orders.
1476 The printing press is introduced into England by William Caxton.
18th November 1477 The first dated book is printed in England.
1478 The first print edition of The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer is published.
9th April 1483 King Edward IV suddenly dies, leaving his son Edward V to inherit the throne from him.
26th June 1483 Parliament declares that Edward IV’s uncle, Richard, Duke of Gloucester is the legal king – King Richard III.
Summer 1483 The two princes, Edward V and his brother, are murdered in the Tower of London.
22nd August 1485 Battle of Bosworth Field takes place between the armies of the House of York and the House of Lancaster. King Richard III is killed.
22nd August 1485 Henry Tudor becomes King Henry VII of England.