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Harold Harefoot

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Harold I Harefoot
Image:Image2.gif
Rank: 19th
Ruled: November 12, 1035March 17, 1040
Predecessor: Canute
Date of Birth: 1016
Place of Birth: Denmark
Wife: Never married
Buried: Saint Clement Dane's Church
Date of Death: March 17, 1040
Parents: Canute and Ælgifu

Harold I Harefoot (c. 1016March 17, 1040) was King of England from 1037 to 1040. He was the son of King Canute of Denmark and England and his concubine Aelgifu. He earned the name "Harefoot" for his speed and skill at hunting.

As the son of Canute and his queen Emma of Normandy, Harold's younger half-brother Harthacanute was legitimate heir to the thrones of both Denmark and England at Canute's death (1035), but Harold took effective power in England and secured recognition by Harthacanute (1036) as regent during the latter's absence in Denmark.

In opposition to his brother, Harold proclaimed himself King of England in 1037. His period of rule is associated with the blinding and death of Alfred the Aethling, Emma's son by Ethelred, following Alfred's return to the kingdom (possibly in an attempt to take the throne) with his brother Edward. Harold never married, but he had an illegitimate son, Elfwine, who became a monk on the continent.

Harold died at Oxford in 1040, just as Harthacanute was preparing an invasion. He was buried at Westminster, but Harthacanute later exhumed the body and had it thrown into a fen.

Preceded by:
Canute
King of England Succeeded by:
Harthacanute
de:Harald I. (England)

fr:Harold Ier Pied de lièvre he:הרולד הראשון nl:Harold I van Engeland pt:Haroldo I de Inglaterra

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