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Fourteenth Century England VI

Fourteenth Century England VI

Edited by Chris Given-Wilson
Copyright Date: 2010
Edition: NED - New edition
Published by: Boydell and Brewer,
Pages: 200
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.7722/j.ctt7zsvbh
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  • Book Info
    Fourteenth Century England VI
    Book Description:

    The essays collected here present the fruits of the most recent research on aspects of the history, politics and culture of England during the `long' fourteenth century - roughly speaking from the reign of Edward I to the reign of Henry V. Based on a range of primary sources, they are both original and challenging in their conclusions. Several of the articles touch in one way or another upon the subject of warfare, but the approaches which they adopt are significantly different, ranging from an analysis of the medieval theory of self-defence to an investigation of the relative utility of narrative and documentary sources for a specific campaign. Literary texts such as Barbour's Bruce are also discussed, and a re-evaluation of one particular set of records indicates that, in this case at least, the impact of the Black Death of 1348-9 may have been even more devastating than is usually thought. Chris Given-Wilson is Professor of Late Mediaeval History at the University of St Andrews. Contributors: Susan Foran, Penny Lawne, Paula Arthur, Graham E. St John, Diana Tyson, David Green, Jessica Lutkin, Rory Cox, Adrian R. Bell

    eISBN: 978-1-84615-802-5
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. CONTRIBUTORS
    (pp. vii-viii)
  4. PREFACE
    (pp. ix-x)
    Chris Given-Wilson
  5. ABBREVIATIONS
    (pp. xi-xii)
  6. A GREAT ROMANCE: CHIVALRY AND WAR IN BARBOUR’S BRUCE
    (pp. 1-26)
    Susan Foran

    ‘And whoever would rehearse all the deeds / Of his highworschipandmanheid,’ wrote Archdeacon John Barbour of Sir Edward Bruce, ‘Men might make a great romance.’² Barbour’sBruceis an account of the reign of Robert I of Scotland (1306–29) composed about 1375 at the court of his grandson, Robert II, the first Stewart king of Scotland (1371–90).³ The poem narrates the deeds of Robert I and his trusted companions: his brother, Edward Bruce; Thomas Randolph, earl of Moray; and, in particular, ‘the good’ Sir James Douglas.⁴ Barbour’s note on Edward Bruce’s celebrated deeds, entitling him...

  7. EDMUND OF WOODSTOCK, EARL OF KENT (1301–1330): A STUDY OF PERSONAL LOYALTY
    (pp. 27-48)
    Penny Lawne

    Edmund of Woodstock was only twenty-nine when Roger Mortimer engineered his execution in March 1330 for allegedly plotting to restore his half-brother, Edward II, to the throne. His judicial murder shocked and horrified the nobility, and spurred Edward III into seizing control of the throne from his mother, Queen Isabella, and her lover, Mortimer, in the bold coup of October 1330. Edmund’s short career has attracted little attention from historians, although he has the distinction of being the only member of Edward II’s family to die for him. He was six years old when Edward II came to the throne,...

  8. THE BLACK DEATH AND MORTALITY: A REASSESSMENT
    (pp. 49-72)
    Paula Arthur

    The pipe rolls of the bishopric of Winchester, England’s best-recorded and wealthiest see in the Middle Ages, may be used to provide an account of the agricultural, demographic, economic and social conditions on the estate. This chapter has a demographic focus, examining evidence from the pipe roll of 1348–49 for the impact of the plague on fifteen Hampshire units of account. Over 50 per cent of the bishop’s estate in Hampshire has been selected, with varied locations across the county from the coast to the northern reaches. Only one of these units (Cheriton) has been studied previously with regard...

  9. WAR, THE CHURCH, AND ENGLISH MEN-AT-ARMS
    (pp. 73-94)
    Graham E. St John

    During the fourteenth century, the pious practices of most members of the gentry and nobility were predominantly focused around theircaput horonisand familial heartland. Even though many of these men spent significant periods of time serving abroad, their religious focus remained close to home, as this was where they worshipped, made donations and were buried. Despite what has been said about the universality of the church in the late medieval period, evidence of the spiritual preparations men-at-arms made before campaigning reveals an unwillingness to engage with foreign clergy and fears of not being able to confess their sins fully...

  10. POWER CORRUPTS! AN ANGLO-NORMAN POEM ON THE ABUSE OF POWER
    (pp. 95-114)
    Diana Tyson

    London British Library MS Harley 209, a miscellany of texts in Latin and French, features, on folios 7va line 26–8ra line 14, a sixty-four-line poem in French on the all-pervading abuse of power in society. Ruth Dean listed it in herAnglo-Norman Literatureas a ‘Lament’, dating the script in the first half of the fourteenth century and noting that the text is ‘known only in this manuscript’ and that there is no edition. She described it thus: ‘This poem laments the abuse of power among all classes: in sixteen monorhymed alexandrine quatrains.’¹ It is the third of a...

  11. NATIONAL IDENTITIES AND THE HUNDRED YEARS WAR
    (pp. 115-130)
    David Green

    Examinations of national identity and nationalism have been and remain a staple of historical research for medievalists and modernists alike. Works have considered the essential components of a national identity, the preconditions necessary for its construction, the point at which the nation first became a fundamental political factor, and when the idea of nationhood began to permeate political institutions. Although the Hundred Years War has not been excluded from such discussions,¹ the bulk of recent later medieval work in this field has analysed developments in the British Isles and offered new interpretations of the national and regional identities constructed in...

  12. ISABELLA DE COUCY, DAUGHTER OF EDWARD III: THE EXCEPTION WHO PROVES THE RULE
    (pp. 131-148)
    Jessica Lutkin

    Only a few leading noblewomen of the fourteenth century have been honoured with dedicated studies of their lives. Queen Isabella and Katherine Swynford are perhaps the most notable for their impact on the fourteenth century, and recent studies of these two women demonstrate the role that female members of the nobility could play in political, social and cultural developments.¹ Other women were remarkable for the positions they forged for themselves, and Jennifer Ward’s collective study of such women explores the range of roles that could be fulfilled.² Some roles have not been scrutinised until recently. For example, medieval queens and...

  13. NATURAL LAW AND THE RIGHT OF SELF-DEFENCE ACCORDING TO JOHN OF LEGNANO AND JOHN WYCLIF
    (pp. 149-170)
    Rory Cox

    In the late Middle Ages the use of force to defend legal rights, property, and even nation, was considered to be wholly legitimate. On an individual basis, for those who experienced combat on the battlefield, or for those civilians who were unfortunate enough to be faced with the threat of invasion, defending one’s life was considered a self-evident necessity. Accordingly, the employment of violence to defend oneself was widely assumed to be entirely legal. Indeed, the precept of self-preservation was perhaps the most fundamental of all the notions of natural law, as Cicero observed:

    From the beginning nature has assigned...

  14. MEDIEVAL CHRONICLERS AS WAR CORRESPONDENTS DURING THE HUNDRED YEARS WAR: THE EARL OF ARUNDEL’S NAVAL CAMPAIGN OF 1387
    (pp. 171-184)
    Adrian R. Bell

    Historians are able to draw upon a diverse range of medieval chronicles to reconstruct and comment on battles and campaigns from the Hundred Years War. For instance, Clifford Rogers in his persuasive monograph on the Edwardian phase of the war makes extensive use of chroniclers to support his thesis.² Jonathan Sumption, writing on the same period, is more circumspect, commenting that most of the chronicles ‘are episodic, prejudiced, inaccurate and late’.³ In the light of these opposing approaches, are we able to take a measured view and judge the accuracy of such war reporting in the absence of twenty-four-hour news...

  15. Back Matter
    (pp. 185-189)