Jean froissart essay

Reluctantly, Edward paid homage to Philip in his role as Duke of Aquitaine, a title he had inherited in Populated by Gascons with a culture and language separate from the French, the inhabitants of Aquitaine preferred a relationship with the English crown. However, France continued to interfere in the affairs of the Gascons, in matters both of law and war.

Jean froissart essay

Yet by the end of the thirteenth century, Wales was not only defeated and pacified not without its difficulties but fully incorporated into the systems of English local Government and law. A number of factors lie behind this seminal change in Welsh history.

One of the most impressive of these remains in Wales today - the magnificent castles undertaken by Edward and his master mason, James of St.

George in the s and 90s. Effigy of Edward I from Lincoln Cathedral To investigate the role of castles one must look at both the primary sources which provide narrative detailing the part which these castles played and secondary sources which will provide an independent analysis of these structures with the benefit of hindsight.

Secondary sources specifically examining the Jean froissart essay and historical role of these castles are few and far between, the most helpful being Edward I by Michael Prestwich and The Three Edwards, again by Michael Prestwich.

As one would expect, however, these sources are not without fault. The Jean froissart essay sources are principally chronicles based on the happenings of the time, for example the Chronicles of Jean Froissart.

He is especially known for his description of warfare and came to England in visiting the Welsh Marches. The purpose of his Chronicles were to record all the important events which had occurred in Western Europe in his lifetime G. His writing was, however, although based mainly on fact, written in what one might describe today as a journalistic manner.

Jean froissart essay

His sources were, of course, limited and due to the lack of reliable communication in the Middle Ages, quite possibly distorted or untrue. The Edwardian castles of Wales are hardly mentioned in Froissart and other texts of the time.

From this one might assume that their importance is less marked than one might have imagined or too obviously great to be mentioned.

My research has indirectly suggested that perhaps their importance was not as great, certainly in military terms, as may have been expected.

Ironically, therefore, it is this very dearth of sources and information that provides us with our first clue. Beaumaris Castlethe last of the Edwardian fortresses of north Wales Nevertheless, I found that the place of the castle fell into three principal categories: The social role includes the employment of the castle as a royal palace and safe place for dignitaries to stay and also the significance of the castle to its town, which in most cases was built alongside geographically and chronologically its protector.

The most well known of these castles, and probably the most influential, are: I shall first consider the social role of the castle in Wales. When a new castle was begun, an entirely new town, or bastide, was also erected in most cases.

A. The Theocratic Age

The new towns founded alongside most of the castles were undoubtedly central to the English strategy of settlement and Anglicisation but we can well ask whether in fact given the situation of these settlements, such huge and sophisticated military fortifications were something in the way of overkill.

Is it possible that Edward and the English Government felt that the propaganda role of these castles was the most important not only in impressing English power upon Welsh peasants but perhaps more importantly in the late thirteenth century and continuing into the fourteenth century to give reluctant English colonists a greater sense of security?

Caernarfon Castle in north Wales Edward was introduced to the concept of the bastide during his expeditions in Gascony and the bastides he created were obviously valued greatly. Such fortified towns served their king well.

They were useful administrative centres from which the king would receive revenue and retain control over the citizenry of the region. Rhuddlan had clearly been intended as the main centre for English administration and control and Caernarfon was to be the administrative capital of the new province of North Wales and was equipped with lavish internal accommodation, to house Their socio-economic role was therefore important in that they enabled the creation and colonisation of some of the beginnings of urban settlement in Wales and provided the base for governmental outposts in the newly conquered territory.

Administrative control seems also to have been based at these castles and in the words of R. Davies, were to be the seats of civilian governance whilst also being the headquarters of a new The bulk of it consisted of reforms to what the English saw as the backward, outdated and benighted Welsh legal system.

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