The Deathbed Prophecy of King Edward the Confessor, 1066   17 comments


King Edward the Confessor

“During the month of January, 1066, the holy King of England St. Edward the Confessor was confined to his bed by his last illness in his royal Westminster Palace. St. Ælred, Abbott of Rievaulx, in Yorkshire, relates that a short time before his happy death, this holy king was wrapt in ecstasy, when two pious Benedictine monks of Normandy, whom he had known in his youth, during his exile in that country, appeared to him, and revealed to him what was to happen to England in future centuries, and the cause of the terrible punishment. They said: ‘The extreme corruption and wickedness of the English nation has provoked the just anger of God. When malice shall have reached the fullness of its measure, God will, in His wrath, send to the English people wicked spirits, who will punish and afflict them with great severity, by separating the green tree from its parent stem the length of three furlongs. But at last this same tree, through the compassionate mercy of God, and without any national (governmental) assistance, shall return to its original root, reflourish and bear abundant fruit.’ After having heard these prophetic words, the saintly King Edward opened his eyes, returned to his senses, and the vision vanished. He immediately related all he had seen and heard to his virgin spouse, Edgitha, to Stigand, Archbishop of Canterbury, and to Harold, his successor to the throne, who were in his chamber praying around his bed.”

Here is the prophecy in verse:

“The green tree which springs from the trunk
When thence it shall be severed
And removed to a distance of three acres
By no engine or hand of man
Shall return to its original trunk
And shall join itself to its root
Whence first it had origin
The head shall receive again its verdure
It shall bear fruit after its flower
Then shall you be able for certainty
To hope for amendment.”

From what I can see in this prophecy/vision by King Edward, the Norman Invasion of 1066 was God’s wrath on the wickedness of the English people because the Christian church had become so corrupt.  After being chastened by the Lord for three hundred years (“And removed to a distance of three acres”), the Lord would bring England back to its Christian foundations.  In 1382, John Wycliffe completed his translation of the English Bible from the Latin Vulgate.  Now the English people could begin to read the Scriptures for themselves.  1382 is a little more than three hundred years removed from 1066.

So why did I discover the prophecy of King Edward today?  It is a mirror of what is happening to the United States in 2014 (and probably for the past forty years) because there is so much sin (like abortion, homosexuality and earth worship) in this country.
1066:  The Year of the Conquest by David Howarth, page 47:
“In the first days of the New Year, the King’s coma or sleep was interrupted by periods of delirium, and on 4 January he was distressingly restless, though still unconscious.  They tried to rouse him from his uneasy sleep, and succeeded.  When he awoke, he asked them to assemble his household and a few more people came into the room:  we are not told who they were.  Then he began to speak in a strong voice.  But instead of telling them what they needed to know, he gave them a long account of a dream.  He had met two monks he had known in Normandy, who were long since dead.  They had told him that for wickedness of the earls and churchmen of England God had cursed the country:  a year and a day after his death, devils would come through the land with fire and sword and war.  God would only cease to punish England when a green tree, felled half-way up its trunk and the part cut off taken three furlongs away, should join itself together again by its own efforts, without the aid of man, and break into leaf and fruit again.”

17 responses to “The Deathbed Prophecy of King Edward the Confessor, 1066

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  1. In my opinion it sounds as if this King (who was reputed to be violent and less than holy) was most likely put up to this by the Catholic church for the Catholic churches purposes. I am feeling that God did not really play a part in this as much as He allowed it to take place for His own purposes. Yep, the Father is doing just that today as well…He is stepping back and allowing the darkness to enter in. Since that is what the majority seem to want…more darkness and less of Yahweh’s light. I do not think they will like their choices in the end though. Yah bless brother:)

  2. Sharon: Back in 1066, all Christians were called Catholic. We can’t define a Christian by the organization they belong to; I myself don’t care about denominations, I do care if someone truly abides in Christ or not.

    I believe, from what I have read, that King Edward the Confessor was a devoted Christian. I don’t think he was the problem in England. The problem in England at the time was that the Christian church was corrupt. I believe the vision/prophecy that King Edward had was from the Lord as a warning about the coming invasion of the Norman French later that year. I think it is fascinating that John Wycliffe came on the scene three hundred years after this prophecy. John Wycliffe wanted the common people to be able to read the Bible in their own language (which was revolutionary at the time). After Wycliffe died, the Catholic church excommunicated him and persecuted his followers.

    To most historians, the Norman Conquest of England in 1066 is one of the biggest events in English history. I would say that the Synod of Whitby in 664 AD was pivotal because it was then that the Christian church in England gave up the Celtic tradition and submitted to the Roman tradition—and I believe this was the beginning of a gradual downfall of Christianity in England.

    Cuthbert of Lindisfarne, 634-687 AD

    The Life and Miracles of Cuthbert

    Synod of Whitby, 664 AD

    First Viking Raid in England, 789 or 793 AD

    • Not all Christians…Byzantine Empire, Bulgaria, Serbian principalities, Russian Ducate of Kiev were all Greek Orthodox. More than 30 million people in total through the 11 century.

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  4. Do you have a book or two on church history that you most recommend?

  5. Mark: I can’t think of a specific book, but the Venerable Bede of England wrote a lot of history. You can probably find Bede’s works somewhere on the internet. Hall Worthington has an excellent website: he deals with the life and writings of the Quakers in 1600s England:

    Here is a post you may want to read:

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  7. Hi – I’m an early medieval historian, and I wandered onto this site looking for a good edition of the Vita Aedwardi. I found your post interesting. Just for your information, Edward the Confessor was likely homosexual himself, and this was the reason for his “chaste” marriage and lack of offspring with Edith, who had him sanctified after his death as part of a propaganda push to quell accusations about her own adultery. It’s a fascinating time of history, and rarely as simple as a good/evil dichotomy.

  8. Your interpretation of St Edward’s dream does not stand up to scrutiny. After Edward died there was a huge revival of the faith in this nation with hundreds of monasteries and convents being built. At one point 1 in 50 people gave their life to Christ by serving in religious orders. That is not a nation in sin!
    In 1534 Henry VIII destroyed the majority of Churches, together with monasteries and convents and declared himself head of the Church in England. The Catholic Church was somewhat forbidden until 1850, just over 300 years later. During this 300 year period England suffered a mini ice age!!
    There are currently many prophecies indicating the revival of the faith in this nation following this 300 year exile. Indeed, 2017 is the 500th anniversary of the reformation in Germany and the exile is over!

    • Building monasteries and convents is not the same thing as a Holy Ghost revival. The human body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, not a man-made building. Serving in religious orders does not make you a Christian.

  9. There is an interesting theory that links the dream of St Edward to Byzantium. The Great Schism between the Latin and Orthodox church – over the Popes’ insistence on primacy over all the other bishops on matters of theology, notably the Filioque innovation to the Creed -occurred around AD1200. So, at the time of the Norman conquest, English and French Christians were still Orthodox Christians. The Normans achieved what the Vikings had not – they destroyed Saxon society, expropriating all property and hereditary estates and imposing new laws and language. Saxon nobility fled to France, but there are also interesting Byzantine records of many English nobles – refugees, really – arriving in Constantinople at this time to become military professionals and clerics. Shortly after 1066, the Great Schism cut Western Europe off from its Orthodox roots, leading directly to the Reformation (which was a reaction against the Latin innovations). The “three acres” is a mystery – certainly there seems no subsequent flowering and fruiting from then until now of any Christianity or royal Saxon line which could relate to pre-Norman Christianity or royalty. But there are definite parallels with the dream (Daniel 34) of Nebuchadnezzar of a tall, fruitful tree cut off at the roots, and then re-growing after seven years, which Daniel explained signified the kings descent into madness for seven years. At the end of that time, he would return to his right mind, stand upright and look to heaven and acknowledge God’s power over heaven and earth. Which came to pass, on the very day Nebuchadnezzar was congratulating himself on finishing building a temple to the Lord – as St Edward had just done, in Westminster Abbey.

    Katherine van der Lee
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  12. I really appreciate you sharing this.

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