The king's companions


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History Today
Vol. 55, no. 12 (December 2005), p. 50-56


From Godwin to Warwick to Leicester: for more than a thousand years the English Earls have been key players in many of the great events of English history. But what did it mean to be an earl, and where did the title come from? Marc Morris looks at the relationship between the Norman and Plantagenet kings and their earls