Although he defeated a Viking invasion, he was himself later defeated in the Battle of Hastings by William the Conqueror. The Monk planned to change history by using advanced technology to aid King Harold, thus ensuring that his army would be better able to face William's army. The Monk believed that Harold would have been a good king and that, under his rule, there wouldn't be "all those wars" in Europe with the claims over France that "went on for years and years", resulting in people being able to better themselves in the peace. Ultimately, the Monk's plan was thwarted when a group of Saxons ran the Monk out of his monastery. (TV: The Time Meddler)
The Sixth Doctor and Peri Brown met him after he was said to have died at that battle, when he was living under the name of Hereward the Wake. The Doctor referred to him as "the foremost of the Saxon outlaws who led a guerrilla campaign against the Normans after the Battle of Hastings." Harold claimed that Countess Gytha and Lady Edith Swan-Neck had intentionally falsely identified his body on the battlefield, allowing him to die as King Harold, but remain alive as "Hereward the Wake". At one point in his guerrilla campaign, he considered an alliance with the Danes, so that he could march on London. However, the Doctor advised against it, as he felt the Danes would not have allowed a Saxon on the throne of England. Indeed, the Doctor was able to convince Harold to abandon his London plans and his ambitions towards recapturing the throne. Instead, he and his men took the Doctor's counsel that it would be better to remain a thorn in the side of the Normans. Thereby, they would give hope to the Saxon people and prevent them from ever fully accepting Norman rule. (PROSE: The Real Hereward)
Mr Smalley had an arrow with a bloodstain on it in his shop. According to Smalley, some said that the arrow was pulled from the eye of King Harold himself after the Battle of Hastings. Rani Chandra replied that she had read online that some said that he wasn't shot in the eye at all. Mr Smalley added that the tapestry of time was a fragile thing and applying the slightest pressure could cause the threads of history to unravel. (TV: Lost in Time)
Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]
- Hereward the Wake was played by Alfred Lynch in the BBC series Hereward the Wake and Brian Blessed in Blood Royal: William the Conquerer.