Hardicanute was the son of King Canute of Denmark, England and Norway by Canute's second wife Emma (who had also been married to Ethelred the Unready). When Canute died in 1035, the royal advisors wanted Hardicanute to co-rule England with his older half-brother Harold (their eldest brother Sweyn having gotten Norway and presumably Denmark) but Hardicanute just wouldn't come over to England from Denmark, so Harold ruled alone until he died in 1040, at which point Hardicanute reluctantly came over to England and ruled. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle actually says about Hardicanute that he "never did anything worthy of a king." In fact, he imposed high taxes and was generally unpopular. He died in 1042 in a drunken fit at someone else's wedding. There were no heirs of Canute's line, so Emma and Ethelred's son Edward the Confessor succeeded his half-brother Hardicanute on the throne of England.

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