[Clan Sinclair]
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[in Norway]
   c. 872
[historical Normandy]
Battle of Val-es-Dunes
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[Battle of Hastings]
[in England]
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For copious information about the Battle of Hastings, see, which has family trees for William and Harold, plus the complete Bayeaux Tapestry, with commentary. —jsq

Neither Walerne nor Hamon were at Hastings

From: Niven Sinclair <>
Date: Tue, 15 Jun 1999 10:53:18 +0100


Of one thing you may be certain: Neither Walderne nor his brother, Hamon, were at Hastings. They had been killed at the Battle of Vale-es-Dunes (1047) when they were contesting the right of William 'the Bastard' to become the next Duke of Normandy. Their other brother, Hubert, actually fought on the side of William 'the Bastard' at Val-es-Dunes and, as a result of this, his family received huge grants of land after the Conquest and became the King's 'dapifer' as you will gather from the St Clairs of the Isles.

Strangely, the sons of Walderne (except for William 'the Seemly' who had gone to Hungary with Edgar 'the Atheling) and Hamon 'the Teeth' were also at Hastings even although William (who was now 'the Conqueror') had killed their fathers.. Blood unites. Blood divides. Religion unites. Religion divides.

Professor Philippe Champy (with whom I have had a lengthy corespondence) does not think that Walderne, Hamon and Hubert were brothers but he has failed to convince me on this point. Hubert may have had a different mother which may have accounted for his decision to side with William rather than with Walderne at Val-es-Dunes. Mothers exert great influence. There may have been sibling jealousy (again prompted by the mothers) and, as Hubert would never have been Duke of Normandy (whoever won the battle) he may have decided to ensure that his sibling rival, Walderne, didn't get it..... so he supported 'the Bastard'. If the Battle of Val-es-Dunes had swung the other way (and it was a closely run thing) the Sinclairs would have become the Royal Family of England and eventually of quarter of the World. If that had been so, would there have been a Boston tea-party? I doubt it! There would have been a Northern Commonwealth of Nations as had been envisaged by Prince Henry Sinclair and Queen Margrette of Norway as early as the end of the 14th Century when trade across the Atlantic was already taking place on a considerable scale.

Niven Sinclair

English Sinclairs / 9 companions of William the Conqueror

From: "Richard Lower" <>
Date: Fri, 18 Jun 1999 11:26:48 -0700

Dear Donald: Andrew Sinclair says they were: Hubert Sinclair, Earl of Rye, and four of his sons, Radulph, Hubert, Adam and Eudo. Walderne, Earl of St Clare with his three sons, Richard, Britel and William. He adds the Earl of Senlis, then notes that "he was a Frenchman and not a Norman" He says that "it is not improbable" that Senlis added his name with his sons on the Roll of De Sancto Claro, but there is no record to support this. Note that Hubert and his sons were Englishmen from East Sussex, while his brother and nephews were Norman. This and much more from Andrew's book The Sinclairs of England.


William ``the Seemly'' and the Athelings

From: "Spirit One Email" <>
Date: Fri, 18 Jun 1999 17:58:55 -0700

According to Niven, and I have his message before me: "Of one thing you may be certain: Neither Walderne nor his brother, Hamon, were at Hastings...."

I think that this is consistent with William the Seemly's actions of being linked with the bringing of Edward the Athling from Hungary in 1057 at the request of King Edward the Confessor to replace him when he should die.

I hope to get people to see that the MOST important person in Edward Athling's family was Edward himself and not his daughter, Margaret. She was of very minor importance in the wider picture of the English throne. Of course, as things turned out in 1070 she just happened at the age of 24 to be at the right place at the right time when Malcolm Canmore decided to get married again.. Edward's son, Edgar, would have been next in importance as another person in line for the English throne.

William the Seemly and everyone knew that William the Bastard had his eye on the throne and this certainly would have have been a hostile action on William the Seemly St. Clair's part and shown that his sympathies were with the English monarchy and not the Norman. (If William the Seemly couldn't have the Norman Dukeship, then he was going to make sure that cousin William the B. didn't get the English throne)


The Battle of Hastings, 1066 [flag of William the Conqueror]

Date: Sat, 08 May 1999 13:15:59 -0700
From: Rick Sinclair

From the book The Great Battles of All Nations vol.1 publ. 1899
Chapter XI: The Battle of Hastings

Conquest of England by Duke William of Normandy,
Afterward styled William The Conquerer
A.D. 1066
The Battle of Hastings is recognized as the first step by which England reached her present strength. Previously the importance of the country had been meager. Afterward it emerged from insignificance into power.

The interest of this eventful struggle, by which William of Normandy became King of England, is materially enhanced by the character of the competitors for the crown. They were three in number. One was a foreign prince from the north; one was a foreign prince from the south; and one was a native hero of the land. Harald Hardrada, the strongest and the most chivalric of the kings of Norway, was the first; Duke William of Normandy was the second; and the Saxon Harold, the son of Earl Godwin, was the third. Never was a nobler prize sought by nobler champions, or striven for more gallantly. The Saxon triumphed over the Norwegian, and the Norman triumphed over the Saxon; but Norse valor was never more conspicuous than when Harald Hardrata and his host fought and fell at Stamford Bridge; nor did Saxons ever face their foes more bravely than Harold and his men on the fatal day of Hastings.

During the reign of King Edward the Confessor over the land, the claims of the Norwegian king to the crown were little thought of; and though Hardrada's predecessor, King Magnus of Norway, had on one occassion asserted that, by virtue of a compact with the former king, Hardicanute, he was entitled to the English throne, no serious attempt had been made to enforce his pretensions. But the rivalry of the Saxon Harold and the Norman William was foreseen and bewailed by the Confessor, who was believed to have predicted on his deathbed the calamities that were impending over England. Duke William was King Edward's kinsman. Harold was the head of the most powerful noble house, next to the royal blood, in England; and, personally, he was the bravest and most popular chieftain in the land. King Edward was childless, and the nearest collateral heir was a puny unpromising boy. England had suffered too severely, during royal minorities, to make the accession of Edgar Atheling desirable; and long before King Edward's death, Earl Harold was the destined king of the nation's choice, though the favor of the Confessor was believed to lead toward the Norman duke.

A little time before the death of King Edward, Harold was in Normandy. The causes of the voyage of the Saxon earl to the Continent are doubtful; but the fact of his having been, in 1065, at the ducal court, and in the power of his rival, is indisputable. William made skillful and unscrupulous use of the oppurtunity. Though Harold was treated with outward courtesy and friendship, he was made fully aware that his liberty and life depended on his compliance with the duke's requests. William said to him, in apparent confidence and cordiality, "When King Edward and I once lived like brothers under the same roof, he promised that if ever he became king of England he would make me heir to his throne. Harold, I wish that thou wouldst assist me to realize this promise." Harold replied with expressions of assent; and further agreed, at Williams request, to marry William's daughter, Adela, and to send over his own sister to be married to one of William's barons. The crafty Norman was not content with this extorted promise; he determined to bind Harold by a more solemn pledge, the breach of which would be a weight on the spirit of the gallant Saxon, and a discouragement to others from adopting his cause. Befor a full assembly of the Norman barons, Harold was required to do homage to Duke William, as the heir apparent of the English crown. Kneeling down, Harold placed his hands between those of the duke, and repeated the solemn form by which he acknowledged the duke as his lord, and promised to him fealty and true service. But William exacted more. He had caused all the bones and relics of saints that were preserved in the Norman monasteries and churches to be collected into a chest, which was placed in the council-room, covered over with a cloth of gold. On the chest of relics, which were thus concealed, was laid a missal. The duke then solemnly addressed his titular guest and real captive, and said to him, "Harold, I require thee, before this noble assembly, to confirm by oath the promises which thou hast made me, to assist me in obtaining the crown of England after King Edward's death, to marry my daughter Adela, and to send me thy sister, that I may give her in marriage to one of my barons." Harold, once more taken by surprise, and not able to deny his former words, approached the missal, and laid his hand on it, not knowing that the chest of relics was beneath. The old Norman chronicler, who describes the scene most minutely, says, when Harold placed his hand on it, the hand trembled, and his flesh quivered; but he swore, and promised upon his oath to take Ele (Adela) to wife, and to deliver up England to the duke, and thereunto to do all in his power, according to his might and wit, after the death of Edward, if he himself should live; so help him God. Many cried, "God grant it!" and when Harold rose from his knees, the duke made him stand close to the chest, and took off the pall that had covered it, and showed Harold upon what holy relics he had sworn; and Harold was sorely alarmed at the sight.

Remembered having read this recently. Hope it helps. The story goes on to cover the Battle of Hastings.

Last changed: 99/11/21 14:36:29 [Clan Sinclair]