- Brief notices-the hundred years war: A Wider focus
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- The Hundred Years War: Trial By Battle
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Compartilhe nas suas redes:. These factors not only contributed to uprisings such as the Jacquerie in northern France in , or the English Peasants revolt of , but also promoted widespread militarization of society by prompting rural and urban communities to develop their own techniques for thwarting attacks by enemy armies and mercenary bands. The bitter dispute over who should be the rightful shepherd of Western Christendom divided Europe and diminished respect for the institution of the papacy and the wider ecclesiastical establishment.
This in turn reduced the possibility that the Church could serve as a peacemaker in the dispute over the French throne.
Brief notices-the hundred years war: A Wider focus
Indeed, as Green argues, the clergy in France and England became increasingly embroiled in national politics as the war dragged on. The rulers of the respective kingdoms supported rival claimants to the papacy, with the Valois of France supporting whichever pope was based in Avignon, and the English kings backing the pope in Rome. The seven remaining chapters hone the argument that war encouraged the development of national institutions and identity by examining topics such as peacemaking efforts, shifting concepts of kingship, and the English occupation of France; they also elaborate the picture of social and political change introduced within the first three chapters by examining the experiences of groups including common soldiers, women, and prisoners of war.
Green performs a great service by drawing together the wide-ranging French and English scholarship on each of these topics into an elegant and unified synthesis that would serve as an engaging introduction to the war for undergraduate students and non-specialists. Many of the chapters stand well on their own, making them suitable as reading assignments or for those seeking an entry point into the literature on a particular topic within scholarship on the Hundred Years War. The chapter on women and war, for example, serves as a particularly valuable presentation of the latest research on issues such as sexual violence during the war, and the contributions that women, aside from Joan of Arc, made on the battlefield and behind the scenes at court.
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Scholars of the Hundred Years War will find much to think about in the connections Green makes as he uses his wide reading and expertise to bring so many disparate pieces together into a cohesive presentation of the changes the war caused within France and England. The case that the war promoted the development of national identity has been made many times before, but to his credit, Green nuances his argument by acknowledging the persistence of regionalism and the pragmatic tendencies of communities that simply wanted peace—whichever lord or ruler might provide it.
Nevertheless, his assertion that a sense of national identity was flourishing by the end of the war would have been more convincing had he provided more evidence to this effect from outside royal courts and beyond the ranks of the military and ecclesiastical elite.
As cities came into their own as centers of military strength and economic power, their inhabitants developed strong civic identities that exercised as much and sometimes more influence over their actions and policies than their sense of affiliation to a single, national community. Even in the later stages of the war, in the years following the devastating defeat at the battle of Agincourt in , the future Charles VII and his allies were forced to lean heavily on the support of Scottish allies and companies of foreign mercenaries.
Linguistic differences were among the many reasons why so many communities around France viewed those contingents fighting for their king distrustfully; the tensions and misunderstandings that arose from those differences show that language could just as easily be a source of division among those fighting on the same side as a force unifying disparate groups combating a common enemy.
While Green clearly demonstrates that the kings of both England and France consistently sought to use tools such as language and national symbols to encourage unity behind their costly war efforts, there remains room for debate and further investigation of how effectively their propaganda reached and affected its intended audiences.
While the Monzon experiment was to have long term consequences in the administration of state revenues, these lay in the institutions created by the Parliament to manage its business between sessions rather than in tax administration per se. The king was still reduced to shifts and expedients to fund his armies. Manuel Sanchez Martinez recounts one of these in the shape of an attempt in to institutionalise the obligation of all Catalan subjects to serve the king in person during a military emergency and turn it into a form of taxation levied to support a limited number of trained and reliable soldiers.
While the Barcelona sources he works with suggest that the city managed to fulfil its obligations with a reasonable amount of success one wonders how many of the crossbowmen recruited to wear the colours of Barcelona were for all practical purposes professionals since many were not city residents , things did not go so well elsewhere in Catalonia.
The Hundred Years War: Trial By Battle
The final Spanish contribution by Clara Estow recounts the skilful diplomatic and military manoeuvrings of Muhammed V of Granada which enabled his kingdom to survive in a hostile environment and he himself to come back from deposition in for a second reign from until The essay focuses very much on the 's and 60's and it would have been interesting to know more about how he adapted to the rather different conditions of the 's and 80's.
Two further essays examine the wider geographical effects of the War. In one of the most interesting contributions William Caferro examines the relatively short career of the White Company in Italy in his view the White Company proper went out of existence after its defeat at San Mariano in the summer of even if individual Englishmen like Sir John Hawkwood had much longer careers in Italy.
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Caferro usefully revises certain myths; the Company does not seem to have been particularly based on archers and may indeed have had to recruit Hungarian mounted bowmen to get an adequate proportion of missile weapons into its ranks. While innovative in certain ways it did not revolutionise Italian warfare and owed its reputation as much to a high degree of perceived discipline and cohesion as to outstanding battlefield performance.
Its specialism was storming minor fortresses and it operated effectively at night. When internal cohesion broke down it rapidly became vulnerable.
Sergio Boffa examines the role of the Duchy of Brabant and the delicate balancing act which its rulers had to engage in between England, France and the Empire during the 14th century. In part Boffa wishes to rebut criticisms of John III of Brabant for "deserting" the English alliance he adopted in the 's and the perceived inconsistency of Brabantine policy thereafter. He makes a reasonable case for the dukes, but at the expense of suggesting that they were fundamentally weak rulers with a limited ability to manage the competing interests of the urban communities in the duchy.
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In addition to Sanchez Martinez's piece, two essays cover urban issues. Peter Konieczny examines the London contribution to the English war effort in the period.
This involved the provision of men and ships as well as the more familiar role of London merchants as war financiers though perhaps surprisingly he does not examine the role of London merchants and artisans in military procurement. Peter Solon examines the role of the city of Toulouse as a military actor over a very long period stretching well into the 16th century. He sees the city as having been largely successful in its objectives- it was never directly subject to English attack after and managed to retain control of its own increasingly elaborate defences throughout, never being subject to a royal garrison.
The city possessed a militia but this was surprisingly rarely mobilised for service beyond the walls. Solon takes a rather more positive view than many commentators of the post attempts to create a quasi professional infantry force drawn from the urban communities the so-called franc archiers which to a considerable degree supplanted the militia for the later period. Indeed one criticism of Solon's valuable overview might be that this is a view of Toulouse through the eyes of its elites rather than the mass of its inhabitants, let alone the inhabitants of its rural surroundings.
Two essays look at the position of women in war.
The Hundred Years War Revisited
James Gilbert gives a very generalised overview of the role of women over the whole span of the war. The invocation of that somewhat overused figure Rosie the Riveter adds little to his analysis especially as he quite explicitly excludes the indispensable and all too often overlooked female component in every medieval army, the group marginalised under the pejorative term "camp followers", from his analysis and his evidence base is slender. He also rather underestimates the effectiveness of peasant resistance to military marauders.
Nevertheless he does make some useful points about the "total" nature of medieval warfare, especially in siege situations where the entire urban population could quite legitimately be seen as having a military role- though surprisingly he does not refer to the legend that the gun shot which resulted in the death of the Earl of Salisbury at Orleans in was touched off by a woman.