English History Timeline 1020-1029

Cnut the Great

This timeline gives a chronological listing of the main events in English History for the years 1020 – 1029

The monarch for this period was Canute


1020 (early)
Canute, King of England had left England to go to Denmark to secure the Danish throne. Once Denmark was secure, Canute returned to England.
1020 (12th June)
Lyfing, Archbishop of Canterbury, died.
1020 (late June)
Aethelnoth became Archbishop of Canterbury.
1021 (November)
Thorkell the Tall and his wife were banished from England. It is not known why this happened save that there must have been a serious disagreement between Thorkell and Canute. Earl Godwin of Wessex took Thorkell’s place as adviser to Canute.
1022 (during)
King Canute stationed himself on the Isle of Wight, traditional defence station of England, so it seems likely that he was expecting an attack on the South of England. (Possibly from the banished Thorkell.)
1026 (during)
A son, Harold Godwinson, was born to Earl Godwin and his wife, Gytha.
1023 (during)
Canute and Thorkell were reconciled. Thorkell went to Denmark taking with him Canute’s son, while Thorkell’s son remained with Canute in England.
1023 (during)
Siward became Earl of Northumbria.
1025 (during)
Canute made an alliance with Constantine of the Byzantine Empire.
1026 (during)
Battle of Helgea
A combined Norwegian and Swedish force launched an attack on Denmark. Canute responded by sending a combined English and Danish fleet. Despite heavy casualties the battle was won by Canute.
1026 (during)
A son, Tostig Godwinson, was born to Earl Godwin and his wife, Gytha.
1027 (Easter)
Canute travelled to Rome to witness the coronation of Conrad II as Holy Roman Emperor. The Holy Roman Emperor was ruler of a group of states known as the Holy Roman Empire which roughly correspond to modern day Germany.
1028 (during)
A son, William, was born to Robert Duke of Normandy and his mistress Herleva of Falaise. He was know as William the Bastard because he was illegitimate. He would later be known as William the Conqueror.
1028 (Summer)
Canute took a fleet of 50 ships and sailed to attack Norway. King Olaf Haraldsson of Norway knew that he was outnumbered and so decided to stand down rather than engage in a battle he was sure to lose. Cnut took control of Norway and proclaimed himself King.
1028 (late Summer)
Canute appointed his son, Harthacnut, regent of Denmark and his kinsman, Earl Hakon Eriksson regent of Norway.
1029 (Autumn)
Earl Hakon Eriksson, regent in Norway was returning to Norway from England when his ship sank and he was drowned.
1029 (late Autumn)
Canute’s illegitimate son, Sweyn, by his mistress Aelfgifu, was appointed regent in Norway.


First published 2016; updated and republished Apr 24 2022 @ 4:04 pm – Updated – [last-modified]

Harvard Reference for this page:

Heather Y Wheeler. (2016 – 2022). English History 1020 – 1029.

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