William the Conqueror
In 1066 A.D., after the death of Edward the Conqueror, king of England, a man by the name of William the Conqueror asserted his right to rule England. William was Edward’s cousin, and lived in Normandy, France. He was a vassal, or lord to the king of France, and had many vassals, or lords under himself in Normandy.
Using his influence, William gathered an army of 6,000 soldiers, which he used to conquer England. After placing himself on the throne, he rewarded his vassals from Normandy with the lands of many of the English nobles.
William the Conqueror began to raise funds by enacting a tax on his people. In order to find out how much he could tax them, he established a census. This census was very thorough and counted everything in the kingdom, down to the last chicken.