by Chris Davis and Sarah Field
Chapter 9: The Late Middle Ages- Social and Political Breakdown (1300-1527)
I. The Hundred Years’ War and the Rise of National Sentiment
A. Kings and Queens began to gain power with the feudal system, causing the people
to accept a national identity, and setting the stage for international war.
1) The Causes of the War
a) Hundred Years’ War started May 1337- Ended October 1453 (116 yrs long)
b) English King Edward III claimed the throne of France when the French king Charles IV
died (connected by Philip the Fair of France. Edward was his grandson, and Charles IV
was Philip’s last son). Edward III was fifteen years old, and so French nobles placed
Philip VI of Valois on the throne (first cousin of Charles)
c) England and France were two major territorial powers too close to one another.
d) French and English arguments over land go back to the Norman conquests.
e) The war was a struggle for “national identity” and for “control of territory.
f) French Weakness (They have strengths?)
i) France and three times population of England, was much wealthier, and was fighting on
its own soil.
ii) Majority of the war until 1415, England won most of the battles.
a. internal disunity of the French
b. Transitioning between the “fragmented feudal society” into a “modern state”
iii) Borrowed heavily from Italian bankers and depreciated the currency to raise money.
iv) Estates General (1355)- created to secure funds.
a. The Estates General was representative council of townspeople and nobles.
b. Levied taxes, but also used the king’s problems to benefit themselves (regional rights
and privileges.) –deepened territorial divisions
v) England and a superior military- Longbow
2. Progress of the War
a) The Conflict During the Reign of Edward III
i) Edward embargoed English wool to Flanders causing urban rebellions
ii) Flemish cities inspired by Jacob van Artevelde (a rich merchant) and led by Ghent
revolted against France and signed an alliance with England in 1340 acknowledging
Edward II king of France.
iii) June 23 (first major battle) Edward defeated the French fleet in the Bay of Sluys, plan
to invade France through Flanders failed.
iv) 1346- Edward attacked Normandy, seized Calais after easy victories ending in Battle of
v) The Black Death forced a truce in 1347
vi) 1356 near Poitiers, the English won their greatest victory by capturing the French King
John II the Good.
vii) Estates General now held the power in France and were led by merchants from Paris-
Etienne Marcel. Demanded similar rights granted to the English people in the Magna
Carta but the Estates General was too divided to be an effective government.
viii) French rich forced the peasants to pay increasing taxes causing a series of bloody
rebellions called Jacqueire in 1358. But the nobles quickly but down the revolt.
ix) May 9, 1360: the English forced the Peace of Brétigny of the French declaring and end
to Edward’s vassalage to the king of France and confirmed his rule over English
territories. France also agreed to pay a ransom of 3 million gold for King John the
Good’s release and Edward would renounce the claim to the French throne.
x) By the late...