What did henry II do when he was crowned king of england?
Changes to England Henry’s empire was much larger than the mere island named Britain. It extended to cover almost half of France, stretching from the Scottish Border to the Pyrenees in Northern Spain. In such a large kingdom, Henry had to travel energetically and extensively, to fend off invaders (see appendix A2). He defeated the Scots, and later made William the Lion pay homage to his country. He also felt the need to prove himself, as he was a short and thickset man, with bandy legs attributed to endless horse riding. He was described as ‘short of body’, and his small bustling figure was emphasized by the short cloak he habitually wore which earned him the nickname Curtmantle . He travelled so energetically, in fact, Henry’s first major task was to re-establish the kings’ authority and justice. He involved his barons in legislation and law-making. Henry set out to destroy all the illegal castles built by barons in the civil war. Generally, the building of castles was a royal preroga