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Harold Hardrada(härdrä`də), Norse Harald Harðráði [Harold stern council], d. 1066, king of Norway (1046–66), half-brother of Olaf II. After Olaf's defeat (1030), Harold went to serve Zoë, the Byzantine empress, in campaigns against the Seljuk Turks, but he returned (1042) to Scandinavia to join the revolt against Magnus I. Made joint king in 1046, he became sole king at Magnus's death in 1047 and engaged in the turbulent warfare of the time. In 1066 he accompanied TostigTostig
, d. 1066, earl of Northumbria; son of Earl Godwin of Wessex. He was banished with his father in 1051 and returned with him in their armed invasion of 1052. Made earl of Northumbria in 1055, Tostig jointly invaded (1063) Wales with his brother Harold (later King Harold of
..... Click the link for more information. , the exiled earl of Northumbria, on an invasion of N England. At the same time, William of Normandy was preparing an invasion of S England. The hard-pressed king of the English, HaroldHarold,
1022?–1066, king of England (1066). The son of Godwin, earl of Wessex, he belonged to the most powerful noble family of England in the reign of Edward the Confessor. Through Godwin's influence Harold was made earl of East Anglia.
..... Click the link for more information. , defeated the Norse invasion at Stamford Bridge; both Harold III and Tostig fell in the battle. However, the way had been prepared for the Norman victory at Hastings.