Robert Guiscard was the son of the Norman nobleman Tancred de Hauteville from northern France.
Troops under Robert Guiscard took the city of Bari on this date in 1071. This marked the end of the Byzantine presence in southern Italy after 536 years (it had been conquered by Emperor Justinian I). Southern Italy and Sicily actually had a long history of rather exotic rulers. For example, during the period of Classical Antiquity, they were first under the control of Greeks, then the Carthaginians, and Finally the Romans. In the Middle Ages they were captured by the Byzantines, as was described above. Sicily later came under Arab rule, until those were driven out by the Normans. The next rulers were the German Hohenstaufen dynasty, followed by the French Angevins, then the Aragonese, and then changed hands several times between the Spanish, the French, and the Habsburgs. These conflicts lasted until the 19th century.
Robert Guiscard was the son of the Norman nobleman Tancred de Hauteville from northern France. He bore the title of Duke of Apulia, Calabria, and Sicily (Sicily was actually ruled by his younger brother Roger, who acted as Robert’s vassal). Robert also conducted military campaigns in the eastern Adriatic, on the coasts of what are now Albania and Greece.