Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Eadnoth

EADNOTH (d. 1067), staller, or master of the horse, under Eadward the Confessor (Kemble, Codex Dipl. 845), Harold (Flor. Wig. ii. 3), and William the Conqueror (A.-S. Chron., sub ann. 1067), appears to have held large estates, especially in the west country, and in one case to have taken advantage of Harold's favour to gain land at the expense of the church, and in another probably of the favour of the Conqueror to do so at the expense of a private landowner (Norman Conquest, ii. 548, iv. 758). When Harold's sons invaded England in 1067 with a Danish fleet from Ireland, and, after having been beaten off from Bristol by the burghers, ravaged the coast of Somerset, Eadnoth met them with a local force and fought a battle with them, in which, according to Florence of Worcester, the invaders gained the victory, while William of Malmesbury says that they were defeated, and it may be inferred from the ‘Chronicle’ that the issue was doubtful. Eadnoth was slain, and ‘many good men on both sides’ (A.-S. Chron.) Eadnoth left a son named Harding who was alive when William of Malmesbury wrote. There is no reason to doubt that he was the father of Robert FitzHarding, the founder of the second and present house of the lords of Berkeley [see Berkeley, family of].

[Anglo-Saxon Chron. sub ann. 1067; Florence of Worcester, ii. 3 (Engl. Hist. Soc.); William of Malmesbury, Gesta Regum, ii. 429 (Engl. Hist. Soc.); Kemble's Codex Dipl. 845; Freeman's Norman Conquest, ii. 548, iv. 227, and Note S. 757–61, which contains all that can be made out on the subject of Eadnoth's lands.]

W. H.