Edyth Swanneck Family Tree (c1025-d. c1086)

Edyth Swanneck Family Tree


Edyth Swanneck Family Tree showing:


Short Biography

Edyth, known as Swanneck or The Fair, is believed to have been born around 1025. The identity of her parents is not known but she was a wealthy woman. She married Harold Godwinson, son of the Earl of Wessex, by the Danish handfasting ceremony and they had five children.

Harold’s sister, Edith, married King Edward the Confessor in 1045 further elevating the family. Harold became Earl of Wessex on the death of his father in 1053 and worked closely with the King. Edward and Edith had no children and when Edward died on 5th January 1066 Harold was nominated by the Witan to succeed.

Harold’s succession angered William of Normandy who claimed he had been offered the throne by Edward. With the threat of invasion Harold needed the support of the other Earls and set Edyth aside and married Ealdgyth of Mercia, sister of Morcar of Mercia and Edgar of Northumbria. Despite his second marriage it is believed that Harold maintained his relationship with Edyth Swanneck who was his true love.

King Harold faced two invasions in the Autumn of 1066. He successfully defeated the invasion of Harald Hardrada but was defeated and killed at the Battle of Hastings on 14th October 1066. His body was so badly mutilated that Edyth was summoned to identify it. 

There is not recorded history of Edyth after the Battle of Hastings. By the time of the compilation of the Domesday Book in 1086 her lands had passed to a Norman noble – it is generally assumed that she had died around this time.


Published Dec 09, 2017 @ 11:56 am – Updated – May 3, 2024 @ 12:51 pm

Harvard Reference for this page:

Heather Y Wheeler. (2017 – 2024). Edyth Swanneck Family Tree (c1025-d. c1086). Available: https://www.treesofblue.com/edyth-swanneck-d-c1086. Last accessed July 21st, 2024