In 1069 Robert of Comines, a Norman to whom William had given the earldom of Northumberland, was murdered by the English at Durham; the north declared for Edgar Atheling, the last male representative of the West-Saxon dynasty; and Sweyn Estrithson of Denmark sent a fleet to aid the rebels.
In 1072 he undertook a campaign against Malcolm, king of Scots, who had married Margaret, the sister of Edgar Atheling, and was inclined to promote English rebellions.
When William reached the Forth his adversary submitted, did homage as a vassal, and consented to expel Edgar Atheling, who was subsequently endowed with an English estate and admitted to William's favour.
By Ethelred Emma had two sons, Edward the Confessor and the atheling Elfred (d.
Commission, Appendix, p. 4) the original name is given as " Atheling Street," and instances of this spelling are common in the 13th century.
The defeated chiefs retired on the city, led by Ansgar the Staller, under whom as sheriff the citizens of London had marched to fight for Harold at Senlac. They elected Edgar Atheling, the grandson of Edmund Ironside, as king, which the Saxon Chronicle says " was indeed his natural right."
While together they held Wessex for Hardicanute, the atheling iElfred, son of Emma by her former husband 'Ethelred II., landed in England in the hope of winning back his father's crown; but falling into the hands of Godwine, he and his followers were cruelly done to death.