This chapter focuses on the years from 1049 to 1053, a delineated a period of political struggle which reconfigured Edward the Confessor's alliances. It explains how Edward had to contend with the developing threats from Flanders to the east and Gruffudd ap Rhydderch to the west. It also talks about Edward's installation of his own candidates in the archbishoprics in several important offices, which collided with other powerful agents who sought to install theirs. The chapter analyzes how Edward had to raise his political game to become a European player abroad and how he had to integrate newcomers into a small and jealous circle of lords without somehow upsetting the balance. It also assesses how Edward would negotiate the first rebellion of his reign.
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