William of Normandy, also known as William the Conqueror, had to overcome challenges not faced by most royalty. We know this because his other moniker was William the Bastard. He was born in 1028 to Robert I, the sixth Duke of Normandy. His mother was Herleva the humble daughter of a Tanner. They were unmarried, hence William’s sobriquet. Despite this humble upbringing he became a formidable Norman ruler and one of England’s most influential kings.
Here’s my question when I researched the life of William. He was a bastard offspring. In some contexts this would disqualify one from receiving his father’s office, especially a Duke. But it didn’t appear to be a problem for William. How did the illegitimate offspring of a tanner’s daughter become king of England? Find out in this podcast episode.
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