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Last Updated: Friday, 4 August 2006, 05:18 GMT 06:18 UK
Domesday scenario
Detail from the Bayeux Tapestry, which tells the story of the Norman victory at the battle of Hastings
We know what this lot were doing in 1066 - but where were your family?
It's the most famous date in British history. 1066 - the year that William the Conqueror successfully invaded England and won the Battle of Hastings.

The Norman invaders set about making an inventory of their new kingdom. listing every village, farmstead and abbey in the country.

The idea was to find out who owned what land and cattle - to make sure they were paying as much tax as possible to their new rulers.

Now, The Domesday Book provides a fascinating snapshot of life in England just over 1,000 years ago.

And this morning, the Book goes online, at the National Archives' website - so that anyone can find out with a few clicks of a mouse whether their home town is mentioned in the book.

This morning on Breakfast:

  • Our arts reporter Emma Jones went to have a look at the Domesday book itself - and we found out what it can tell us, Dr Nick Barratt, who is a historian specialising in the Medieval era, and Dr David Musgrove, the editor of BBC History Magazine

  • The Domesday Book

    The Domesday Book is held by the National Archives, which has its headquarters in Kew in West London.

    As it's more than 1,000 years old - it was completed in 1086 - most people never get to see or touch it.

    Now, anyone can access the information it contains online.

    You can use the National Archives' search engine to find out whether your local area is listed - or whether your family's surname appears on its pages.

    It's another tool in the armoury for those who are trying to trace their family history - and it also provides a fascinating glimpse into what life was like in England more than 1,000 years ago.

    BBC Breakfast



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