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Harold : the Last of the Saxon Kings — Volume 03 by Baron Edward Bulwer Lytton Lytton
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BOOK III.


THE HOUSE OF GODWIN.




CHAPTER I.


And all went to the desire of Duke William the Norman. With one hand
he curbed his proud vassals, and drove back his fierce foes. With the
other, he led to the altar Matilda, the maid of Flanders; and all
happened as Lanfranc had foretold. William's most formidable enemy,
the King of France, ceased to conspire against his new kinsman; and
the neighbouring princes said, "The Bastard hath become one of us
since he placed by his side the descendant of Charlemagne." And
Mauger, Archbishop of Rouen, excommunicated the Duke and his bride,
and the ban fell idle; for Lanfranc sent from Rome the Pope's
dispensation and blessing [69], conditionally only that bride and
bridegroom founded each a church. And Mauger was summoned before the
synod, and accused of unclerical crimes; and they deposed him from his
state, and took from him abbacies and sees. And England every day
waxed more and more Norman; and Edward grew more feeble and infirm,
and there seemed not a barrier between the Norman Duke and the English
throne, when suddenly the wind blew in the halls of heaven, and filled
the sails of Harold the Earl.

And his ships came to the mouth of the Severn. And the people of