By Gordon Corrigan
The glory and tragedy of the Hundred Years struggle is published in a brand new ancient narrative, bringing Henry V, the Black Prince, and Joan of Arc to clean and bright life
In this desirable new heritage of a clash that raged for over a century, Gordon Corrigan finds the horrors of conflict and the machinations of strength that experience formed a millennium of Anglo-French relations.
The Hundred Years battle was once fought among 1337 and 1453 over English claims to either the throne of France via correct of inheritance and big elements of the rustic that were at one time Norman or, later, English. The struggling with ebbed and flowed, yet regardless of their more advantageous strategies and nice victories at Crécy, Poitiers, and Agincourt, the English may by no means desire to safe their claims in perpetuity: France used to be wealthier and much extra populous, and whereas the English received the battles, they can no longer desire to carry ceaselessly the lands they conquered.
Military historian Gordon Corrigan's gripping narrative of those epochal occasions in combative and refreshingly alive, and the good battles and personalities of the interval - Edward III, The Black Prince, Henry V, and Joan of Arc between them - obtain the whole cognizance and reassessment they deserve.
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Additional info for A Great and Glorious Adventure: A History of the Hundred Years War and the Birth of Renaissance England
Since the eighteenth century, Queen Isabella has been described as the ‘she-wolf of France’. Reviled as a notorious adulteress, a rebel against her husband and an accomplice in his murder, only recently has she been reassessed, at least by some, as a tragic queen. Isabella certainly had much to contend with, and for most of her marriage to Edward II she was a loyal and supportive wife. She accompanied her husband on military campaigns (campaigns which almost always had disastrous results), and on several occasions she was entrusted with the Great Seal of England; she was literate and, with maturity, certainly capable of understanding the political nuances, both domestic and international, of her time.
By the 1070s, the old English aristocracy had been virtually wiped out, English churchmen were being replaced by Normans, castles had been built all over the country and, secure within their walls, French-speaking Normans ruled over Old English-speaking Saxons. By the time of the completion of the Domesday Book in 1086,2 only two Anglo-Saxons are named as having holdings of any significance. It was the greatest upheaval in English society, law and religion since the Roman withdrawal. Now the ruling classes held lands on both sides of the Channel, which was fine as long as their feudal overlord was the same person in England as he was in Normandy, as was the case until William I’s death in 1087.
All might have been well if he could only have restrained his wit and avoided poking fun at the great men of the kingdom. Had he deferred to the nobility and worked at showing them that he was no threat (and he appears to have had no political ambitions), he might well occupy no more than a brief footnote in history, but, as it was, he could not resist teasing the magnates, to whom he gave offensive and often apt nicknames of which he made no secret. Thus, the amply proportioned earl of Lincoln was ‘burst belly’; the earl of Pembroke ‘Joseph the Jew’; the earl of Lancaster, the king’s cousin, the richest man in the kingdom and the proprietor of a large private army, ‘the fiddler’; and the earl of Warwick, who would ultimately be responsible for Gaveston’s premature demise, ‘the black dog of Arden’.
A Great and Glorious Adventure: A History of the Hundred Years War and the Birth of Renaissance England by Gordon Corrigan