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His army destroyed crops and settlements and forced rebels into hiding.
In the New Year of 1070 he split his army into smaller units and sent them out to burn, loot, and terrify.
But some scholars doubt whether William could have assembled enough troops to inflict so much damage, and the records are believed to have been partly misinterpreted.
Possibly emboldened by the fighting in the north, rebellions broke out in other parts of the country.
William sent earls to deal with problems in Dorset, Shrewsbury and Devon, while he dealt with rebels in the Midlands and Stafford.
There was only 25% of the population and plough teams remaining and 80,000 oxen and 150,000 people fewer.
Independent archaeological evidence supports the massive destruction and displacement of people.
Further, communications between the north and south were difficult, partly due to the terrain but also because of the poor state of the roads.