Next Previous
  • 1068 A.D.

    William the Conqueror Marches on York

    Read More Previous southern kings had been content to let the north be.  Not so William the Conqueror.
    After the Battle of Hastings in 1066 York was ‘seething with discontent’ in the words of chronicler Orderic Vitalis. 
    It was a Viking city, with Viking traditions and culture. More than that the whole of the north was in rebellion.  So William marched on York in 1068.

  • 1069 A.D.

    Rebellion and Revenge

    Read More To make room for one of his castles, William laid waste to one of the seven ‘shires’ of York.  This only added to the anger and resentment in the city.
    In 1069 local forces attacked the two castles without success.  But then a more serious challenge emerged in the form of a Danish King with a large fleet of ships.
    Read more

  • 1137 A.D.

    The Great Fire (or not?)

    Read More Many histories of the city refer to this event - a huge blaze, or conflagrata, in 1137.  Fire was certainly an ever-present threat in the closely packed, wood-built city.
    But this may be an example of how accepted history can be wrong.  As yet no archaeological evidence has been found of a great fire.
    It's now thought that the reference in the original document may actually refer to a major consecrata, a consecration of churches.

  • 1190 A.D.

    Massacre of Jews

    Read More The most infamous moment in York's history took place in this year.
    The Jewish population of the city was massacred in a bout of antisemitic hysteria.
    Read more

Outside the Walls

Next Previous
  • 1066 A.D.

    Battle of Stamford Bridge

    Read More On 25 September 1066 Harold II defeated the Norwegian King Harald Hardrada at the battle of Stamford Bridge, just outside York.
    Almost immediately, Harold had to march his army South to face the Norman invasion force.

  • 1066 A.D.

    Battle of Hastings

    Read More On 28 September 1066 Duke William of Normandy brought an invasion force of around 8,000 men from France.  On 14 October they met and defeated Harold II's army in the Battle of Hastings; Harold was killed in the battle, legend has it by an arrow through the eye.

  • 1077 A.D.

    The Bayeux Tapestry is completed

    Read More The Bayeux Tapestry explains the events leading up to the 1066 Norman invasion of England as well as the invasion itself.

  • 1085 A.D.

    The Domesday Book is Begun

    Read More Twenty years after the Norman invasion, William the Conqueror ordered a survey England and how it was populated.
    The Doomsday Book is considered the greatest public record of medieval Europe.  It is can be seen at the Public Record Office in London.

  • 1093 A.D.

    Construction of Durham Cathedral

    Read More Durham Cathedral is one of the best surviving examples of Norman, or Romanesque, church buildings.  It was begun a few years after York's Norman Cathedral and the first phase was completed in 1135.

  • 1163 A.D.

    Construction of Notre Dame Cathedral

    Read More The first stone of the great cathedral in Paris was laid in 1163.  Notre Dame was an early example of the gothic style; new techniques enabled the building to stand with finer pillars and pointed arches.