Norman Kings

Discover the History of Great Norman Kings such as William I also known as William the Conqueror!

Learn how These Prolific Castle Buildings Norman Kings were able to Conquer and Dominant England Under William the Conqueror, William Rufus, King Henry I & Stephen of Blois.

King Henry I *Henri Beauclerc *Reign 1100-1135

Medieval King Henry I Portrait

Henry I was considered to be a harsh but effective King. Henry I put down the peasant's rebellion led by Wat Tyler Read more about the King Henry I *Henri Beauclerc *Reign 1100-1135 >>

William II *William Rufus Reign 1087-1100

Portrait image of King William Rufus

William Rufus was the son of the famous Norman King William the Conqueror. and was also an accomplished soldier. Read more about the William II *William Rufus Reign 1087-1100 >>

William the Conqueror *Reign 1066-1087

King William The Conqueror Medieval KIngs

William the Conqueror was the Duke of Normandy who conquered England in the battle of Hastings in 1066. Read more about the William the Conqueror *Reign 1066-1087 >>


Norman Kings

Other Names

Reign

1. King William I

William the Conqueror  |  William the Bastard | Duke of Normandy

1066 – 1087

2. King William Rufus 

Rufus the Red | Son of William the Conqueror

1087 – 1100

3. King Henry I

Henry Beauclerc  |  Married Matilda of Scotland

 1100-1135

4. King Stephen

Stephen of Blois

1135- 1154

Matilda had been the wife of Henry I before he has captured and imprisoned. She was made Queen very briefly at the Battle of Lincoln when King Stephen was captured, but never actually Crowned.

Norman Flag

The first Norman King of England was William the Conqueror also known as the Duke of Normandy, he was crowned king on Christmas day, the same year as his stunning victory at the Battle of Hastings against Anglo Saxon King Harold Godwinson.

King William the Conqueror was a dominant king who ruthlessly secured his legacy by building a highly sophisticated network of castles across Britain.

Pembroke Castle in Wales

King William also brought the Feudal system to England with him from Normandy and established an elaborate taxation system with the help of his infamous Domesday book!

Domesday-Book

Domesday Book

Norman Kings of England List

William I *William the Conqueror *William The Bastard *Reign 1066 – 1087


William II *1087–1100 *William Rufus * 'Rufus the Red'

William II *1087–1100 *William Rufus * ‘Rufus the Red’


Medieval King Henry I Portrait

Henry I *Reign 1100 to his death in 1135 *Henry Beauclerc


Empress Matilda *1135–1153


Stephen *Reign 1135 – 1154 *Stephen Of Blois


Norman Kings *Not Kings of England

  • Robert II *1087–1106 *not King of England
  • William Adelin 1103–1120 *not King of England

Norman Conquest of England

The Norman Era in medieval England began after the Norman Conquest of 1066 in which William the Conqueror defeated King Harold of England to become the new king. Thus he was the first Norman king of England and with this conquest began the high medieval times in England. After him, his son William Rufus became the king of England.

Norman-Kings-William-the-Conqueror

What was the timeline of the Norman Period in England?

The Norman period began in England after the Conquest of 1066 which also triggered the era of high medieval times. This era was to last till the death of King John in 1216. William the Conqueror, the first Norman king, died in 1087 and William Rufus became the next king who ruled until 1100. The Norman dynasty was succeeded by the Angevins in 1154.

King WIlliam Rufus

King William Rufus was the son of William the Conqueror

Who were the Norman Kings that ruled during this period?

The first Norman king of England was William the Conqueror who ruled from 1066 to 1087.

Image of William the Conqueror

William the Conqueror

William the Conqueror was the Duke of Normandy who launched the Norman invasion of England in 1066. His invasion of England brought an end to the Anglo-Saxon rule of England and ushered in a new era of Norman rule.

Battle of Hastings

Battle of Hastings

From 1035 to 1060, William consolidated his power base in Normandy by subduing all resistance. He invaded England on the pretext of a claim to the English throne promised by his cousin, Edward the Confessor.

His reign continued from 1066 to 1087 during which William spent most of his time in Normandy rather than England. Upon his death, his son William Rufus, also known as William II, became the ruler and remained so till 1100, although this period was tumultuous.


William Rufus, also known as William II, was the third son of William the Conqueror. He was also the second Norman King of England and ruled the country after the death of his father in 1087.

King WIlliam Rufus

William Rufus

William Rufus has been praised by historians for his chivalry and his achievements in battles. He also dealt very successfully with the various revolts during his reign. Additionally, he managed to extend his rule to Wales and Maine. However, he has also been called lacking in social graces and natural dignity and devoid of religious piety and morality.


After William Rufus’s death in 1100, his brother Henry I became the king of England and he ruled until 1135. After Henry’s death, his cousin Stephen and daughter Matilda ruled England for some years, although the country remained torn by civil war.

Medieval King Henry I Portrait

King Henry I

King Henry I also known as *Henri Beauclerc ruled England from 2nd August 1100 to 1st December 1135. He was also the Duke of Normandy from 1106 till his death.

Henry I was considered a harsh ruler by his contemporaries. He also had firm and effective control over the barons of England and Normandy. He had an effective network of informers and spies who informed him of all the latest developments and he was also known for punishing those barons who stood against him.


Stephen *Reign 1135 – 1154 *Stephen Of Blois

King Stephen also known as Stephen of Blois, was King of England from 22 December 1135 to his death in 1154. He was also Duke of Normandy from 1135 until 1144.

His reign was not a good one and was marked by civil war and anarchy against his rival and cousin Empress Matilda. Although Matilda was never crowned she eventually succeeded as her son Henry II, was to be the next King of England and the first of the Angevin kings of England.


Most Famous Norman Kings

William the Conqueror, also known as William I and William the Bastard can easily be considered the most famous ruler of the Norman period. He founded the dynasty in England and was thus the first Norman ruler.

It was also William I who consolidated the Norman rule in England by a string of castles constructed all over the country in the most strategic locations. He also redistributed the land to his loyal servants and laid the foundations of the Norman aristocracy in England.

Medieval Norman Castle Turner Painting

Alnwick Castle is a famous Medieval Norman Castle Alnwick that is painted by Turner

  • The Norman period of Medieval history started in 1066 after the Battle of Hastings
  • William the Conqueror defeated King Harold of England and this started Norman rule
  • William the Conqueror was the first Norman ruler of medieval England
  • To consolidate his position of power William the Conqueror quickly built a series of Norman castles across England
  • Many English Castles built by William the Conqueror such as the Tower of London are famous

Best Norman Kings

William I can also be called the best Norman king since over the next century there was never as stable a period as during his reign. It was he who laid the foundations of England which were to remain intact over the subsequent centuries.

For instance, he installed the feudal system that was to endure for centuries and constructed some of the finest castles in England.

Medieval Vassals postion in the Feudal system

Feudal System

None of the subsequent Norman rulers could rival these accomplishments.

Worst Norman Kings

Among the Norman kings, Stephen can be considered the worst ruler of all. He was the cousin of King Henry I and proclaimed himself king after the death of Henry I in 1135.

He actually usurped the right of Matilda who was the rightful heir to the deceased king. During the reign of Stephen, England was plunged into civil war and Stephen was eventually taken prisoner in the Battle of Lincoln against Matilda.

Norman Kings Achievements

Perhaps the most important thing that Norman kings did was the replacement of the old landed class with the new aristocracy which was to remain in power over the subsequent centuries.

Norman-Nobility

Norman Nobility

This was done by William I who wanted to have aristocracy loyal to him. Another important accomplishment of Norman rulers was the construction of large castles all over England.

Norman Kings Summary

The Norman Era in England began when William the Conqueror defeated King Harold of England in the Battle of Hastings in 1066. The era continued till 1154 when the new dynasty of Angevins came into power. During this era, various social and political changes were brought about in England which endured over the subsequent centuries.

  • William the Conqueror was also known as King William and William I
  • Of all the Norman Kings William the Conqueror was the most revered
  • King Stephen was the worst Norman King and was universally disliked
  • King Stephen was involved in the battle of Lincoln against Matilda the rightful heir to the throne
  • The Norman Kings replaced the landed class system of England and replaced it with the feudal system

Norman Flag