Henry of Grosmont
| Duke of Lancaster |
Earl of Lancaster and Leicester
Grosmont Castle, Grosmont, Monmouthshire
|Died||23 March 1361 (aged 50–51)|
Leicester Castle, Leicester, Leicestershire
|Buried||14 April 1361|
Church of the Annunciation of Our Lady of the Newarke
|Spouse(s)||Isabel de Beaumont|
|Father||Henry, 3rd Earl of Lancaster|
|Allegiance||Kingdom of England|
|Awards||Knight of the Garter|
Henry of Grosmont, 1st Duke of Lancaster 1310 – 23 March 1361) was an English statesman, diplomat, soldier, and Christian writer. The owner of Bolingbroke Castle in Lincolnshire, Grosmont was a member of the House of Plantagenet, which was ruling over England at that time. He was the wealthiest and most powerful peer of the realm.(c.
The son and heir of Henry, 3rd Earl of Lancaster, and Maud Chaworth, Grosmont became one of King Edward III's most trusted captains in the early phases of the Hundred Years' War and distinguished himself with victory in the Battle of Auberoche. He was a founding member and the second Knight of the Order of the Garter in 1348, and in 1351 was created Duke of Lancaster. An intelligent and reflective man, Grosmont taught himself to write and was the author of the book Livre de seyntz medicines, a highly personal devotional treatise. He is remembered as one of the founders and early patrons of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, which was established by two guilds of the town in 1352.
Henry of Grosmontwas the only son of Henry, 3rd Earl of Lancaster (c. 1281–1345); who in turn was the younger brother and heir of Thomas, 2nd Earl of Lancaster (c. 1278–1322). They were sons of Edmund Crouchback, 1st Earl of Lancaster (1245–1296); the second son of King Henry III (ruled 1216–1272) and younger brother of King Edward I of England (ruled 1272–1307). Henry of Grosmont was thus a first cousin once removed of King Edward II and a second cousin of King Edward III (ruled 1327–1377). His mother was Maud de Chaworth (1282–1322). On his paternal grandmother's side, Henry of Grosmont was also the great-great-grandson of Louis VIII of France. Little is known of Grosmont's childhood and youth; the year and place of his birth are not known with certainty. He is believed to have been born in about 1310 at Grosmont Castle in Grosmont, Monmouthshire, Wales. According to his own memoirs he was better at martial arts than at academic subjects, and did not learn to read until later in life.
Henry of Grosmont was the eventual heir of his wealthy uncle Thomas, 2nd Earl of Lancaster, who through his marriage to Alice de Lacy, daughter and heiress of Henry de Lacy, 3rd Earl of Lincoln, had become the wealthiest peer in England. Constant quarrels between Thomas and his first cousin, King Edward II of England, led to his execution in 1322. Having no progeny, Thomas's possessions and titles went to his younger brother Henry, 3rd Earl of Lancaster, Grosmont's father. Henry of Lancaster assented to the deposition of Edward II in 1327, but fell out of favour with the regency of his widow Queen Isabella and Roger Mortimer. When Edward III, the son of Edward II, took personal control of the government in 1330, relations with the Crown improved, but by this time Henry of Lancaster was struggling with blindness and poor health.In 1330 Grosmont was knighted, and represented his father in Parliament and is known to have travelled a great deal between his father's estates, presumably supervising their management. In 1331 he participated in a royal tournament at Cheapside in the City of London.
In 1328 Edward III's regents had agreed to the Treaty of Northampton with Robert Bruce, King of Scotland (r. 1306–1329), but this was widely resented in England and commonly known as turpis pax, "the cowards' peace". Some Scots nobles refused to swear fealty to Bruce, and were disinherited. They left Scotland to join forces with Edward Balliol, son of King John Balliol (r. 1292–1296), whom Edward I had deposed in 1296. One of these was Grosmont's father-in-law, Henry de Beaumont, Earl of Buchan and veteran campaigner of the First War of Scottish Independence. Robert Bruce died in 1329; his heir was 5-year-old David II (r. 1329–1371). In 1330 Edward III, who had recently assumed his full powers, made a formal request to the Scottish Crown to restore Beaumont's lands which was refused. In 1331 the disinherited Scottish nobles gathered in Yorkshire, and led by Balliol and Beaumont plotted an invasion of Scotland. Edward III was aware of the scheme but turned a blind eye. Balliol's forces sailed for Scotland on 31 July 1332. Five days after landing in Fife, Balliol's force of some 2,000 men met the Scottish army of 12,000–15,000 men and crushed them at the Battle of Dupplin Moor. Balliol was crowned king of Scotland at Scone on 24 September 1332. Balliol's support within Scotland was limited and within six months it had collapsed. He was ambushed by supporters of David II at the Battle of Annan a few months after his coronation and fled to England half-dressed and riding bareback. He appealed to Edward III for assistance.
On 10 March Balliol, the disinherited Scottish lords and some English magnates crossed the border and laid siege to the Scottish town of Berwick-upon-Tweed. 2 miles (3.2 km) from Berwick. Under intense bow-fire the Scottish army broke, the camp followers made off with the horses and the fugitives were pursued by the mounted English knights. The Scottish casualties numbered in thousands, including their commander and five earls dead on the field. Scots who surrendered were killed on Edward's orders and some drowned as they fled into the sea. English casualties were reported as fourteen; some chronicles give a lower figure of seven. About a hundred Scots who had been taken prisoner were beheaded the next morning, 20 July. It is presumed that Grosmont took part in the battle, but it is possible that he was part of the detachment posted to ensure that the garrison of Berwick did not sally. Berwick surrendered the day after the battle and Grosmont witnessed and sealed the articles of surrender and, a little later, the town's new charter.Six weeks later a large English army under Edward III joined them, bringing the total number of besiegers to nearly 10,000. Grosmont was present at the siege, but it is not known if he marched with his father-in-law and Balliol, or with the main English effort. The Scots felt compelled to attempt to relieve the siege and an army of 20,000 men attacked the English at the Battle of Halidon Hill,
Encouraged by the French King, most Scots refused to accept Balliol as their monarch. In December 1334 Grosmont accompanied Edward III to Roxburgh in Scotland. The English force of 4,000 accomplished little and withdrew in February. Grosmont was a member of Edward III's negotiation team when a brief truce was agreed shortly after at Nottingham. In July Grosmont accompanied Edward III on another invasion of Scotland, with an army of 13,000 –for the time an extremely large force. Scotland was quelled as far as Perth and Grosmont took a senior role in raiding deeper into the country. In 1336 Grosmont was given command of 500 men-at-arms and 1,000 longbowmen and marched to Perth. He was given full plenipotentiary powers by the King. After Edward III reached Perth with the main English army, Grosmont was despatched on a long-range raid to Aberdeen, 80 miles (100 km) away. He returned after two weeks, having razed Aberdeen and devastated the country on the way. Edward went south for six weeks, leaving Grosmont in charge of English-occupied Scotland. Believing that he would soon be at war with France, Edward withdrew most of his forces from Scotland in mid-1336 and sent Grosmont to London to plan the defence of the English Channel ports from the mouth of the Thames westward.
From 1333 Grosmont's father had begun transferring estates into Grosmont's name, giving him an independent income. In 1337 he was one of six men Edward III promoted to the higher levels of the peerage; one of his father's lesser titles, earl of Derby, was bestowed upon him. He was also granted a royal annuity of 1,000 marks 935,900 as of 2021 ) for so long as his father lived, and a number of lucrative estates and perquisites were settled on him. During early 1337 Grosmont was again serving in Scotland. By the time he returned to London, war with France had commenced.(£
In 1338 Grosmont travelled with Edward III to Flanders, and to a meeting with Louis IV, Holy Roman Emperor, at Coblenz. This was a diplomatic mission amidst much pageantry; Edward III concluded agreements with a number of rulers, including Louis IV, whereby they would provide troops in exchange for payment and was appointed Imperial vicar. Throughout the year, French naval forces ravaged the English south coast.Edward III planned to invade France with his army of allies in 1339, but was finding it impossible to raise the money to pay them; he and his ambassadors had committed him to far greater expense than the Exchequer could fund. Grosmont led part of Edward III's army when it finally invaded France in September 1339. Cambrai was besieged, the area around it devastated, and an unsuccessful attempt made to storm the town. The allied army pressed further into France, but the French refused battle. Then, in mid-October, the French issued a formal challenge to battle. Edward accepted and occupied a strong defensive position at La Capelle which the French declined to attack. Having run out of provisions, money and weather suitable for campaigning, the allied army withdrew and dispersed. Grosmont arrived in Brussels with the army at the end of October, where the campaign was celebrated with a Tournament.
From 29 March to 3 April 1340 Grosmont attended Parliament, where a substantial subsidy was voted to the crown.Meanwhile, encouraged by Edward III, the Flemings, vassals of Philip VI, had revolted during the winter. They joined forces with Edward III's continental allies and launched an April offensive, which failed. A French offensive against these forces commenced on 18 May, meeting with mixed fortunes; Edward's outnumbered allies were desperate for the English army to reinforce them.
Grosmont was present at the great English victory in the naval Battle of Sluys in 1340.Later the same year, he was required to commit himself as hostage in the Low Countries for the king's considerable debts. He remained hostage until the next year and had to pay a large ransom for his own release. On his return he was made the king's lieutenant in the north and stayed at Roxburgh until 1342. The next years he spent in diplomatic negotiations in the Low Countries, Castile and Avignon.
Edward III determined early in 1345 to attack France on three fronts. The Earl of Northampton would lead a small force to Brittany, a slightly larger force would proceed to Gascony under the command of Grosmont, and the main force would accompany Edward to either northern France or Flanders. if there is war, do the best you can ...).Grosmont was appointed the King's Lieutenant in Gascony on 13 March 1345 and received a contract to raise a force of 2,000 men in England, and further troops in Gascony itself. The highly detailed contract of indenture had a term of six months from the opening of the campaign in Gascony, with an option for Edward to extend it for a further six months on the same terms. Derby was given a high degree of autonomy, for example his strategic instructions were: "si guerre soit, et a faire le bien q'il poet" (...
On 9 August 1345 Grosmont arrived in Bordeaux with 500 men-at-arms, 1,500 English and Welsh archers, 500 of them mounted on ponies to increase their mobility, 33,000,000 in 2021 terms ), approximately four times the annual income from his lands.and ancillary and support troops. Rather than continue the cautious war of sieges he was determined to strike directly at the French before they could concentrate their forces. He decided to strike at the French at Bergerac, which had good river supply links to Bordeaux, and would provide the Anglo-Gascon army with a base from which to carry the war to the French and sever communications between French forces north and south of the Dordogne. After eight years of defensive warfare by the Anglo-Gascons, there was no expectation among the French that they might make any offensive moves. Grosmont moved rapidly and took the French army at Bergerac by surprise on 26 August, decisively beating them in a running battle. French casualties were heavy, many being killed or captured. Derby's share of the ransoms and the loot was estimated at £34,000 (£
Grosmont left a large garrison in the town and moved north with 6,000–8,000 men 9 miles (14 km) east of Périgueux. A messenger got through to Grosmont, who was already returning to the area with a scratch force of 1,200 English and Gascon soldiers: 400 men-at-arms and 800 mounted archers.to Périgueux, the provincial capital of Périgord, which Grosmont blockaded, taking several strongholds on the main routes into the city. John, Duke of Normandy, the son and heir of Philip VI, gathered an army reportedly numbering over 20,000 and manoeuvred in the area. In early October a very large detachment relieved the city and drove off Grosmont's force and started besieging the English-held strongpoints. A French force of 7,000 besieged the castle of Auberoche,
After a night march Grosmont attacked the French camp on 21 October while they were at dinner, taking them by surprise. There was a protracted hand-to-hand struggle, which ended when the commander of the small English garrison in the castle sortied and fell upon the rear of the French. They broke and fled. Derby's mounted men-at-arms pursued them relentlessly. French casualties are uncertain, but were heavy. They are described by modern historians as "appalling", 49,000,000 in 2021 terms) from the day's captives."extremely high", "staggering", and "heavy". Many French nobles were taken prisoner; lower ranking men were, as was customary, put to the sword. The ransoms alone made a fortune for many of the soldiers in Grosmont's army, as well as Grosmont himself, who was said to have made at least £50,000 (£
John, Duke of Normandy, the son and heir of Philip VI, was placed in charge of all French forces in southwest France, as he had been the previous autumn. In March 1346 a French army under Duke John, numbering between 15,000 and 20,000, April. On 2 April an arrière-ban , a formal call to arms for all able-bodied males, was announced for southern France. Grosmont, now known as Lancaster after the death of his father, sent an urgent appeal for help to Edward. Edward was not only morally obliged to succour his vassal, but also contractually required to; his indenture with Lancaster stated that if Lancaster were attacked by overwhelming numbers, then Edward "shall rescue him in one way or another".enormously superior to any force the Anglo-Gascons could field, marched on the town of Aiguillon, which commanded the junction of the Rivers Garonne and Lot, meaning it was not possible to sustain an offensive further into Gascony unless the town was taken, and besieged it on 1
The garrison, some 900 men, sortied repeatedly to interrupt the French operations, while Lancaster concentrated the main Anglo-Gascon force at La Réole, some 30 miles (48 km) away, as a threat. Duke John was never able to fully blockade the town, and found that his own supply lines were seriously harassed. On one occasion Grosmont used his main force to escort a large supply train into the town.
In July the main English army landed in northern France and moved towards Paris. Philip VI repeatedly ordered his son, Duke John, to break off the siege and bring his army north. Duke John, considering it a matter of honour, refused. By August, the French supply system had broken down, there was a dysentery epidemic in their camp, desertion was rife and Philip VI's orders were becoming imperious. On 20 August the French abandoned the siege and their camp and marched away. Six days later the main French army was decisively beaten in the Battle of Crécy with very heavy losses. Two weeks after this defeat, Duke John's army joined the French survivors. Meanwhile, the English laid siege to the port of Calais.
Philip vacillated: on the day the siege of Calais began he disbanded most of his army, to save money and convinced that Edward had finished his chevauchée and would proceed to Flanders and ship his army home. On or shortly after 7 September, Duke John made contact with Philip, having shortly before disbanded his own army. On 9 September Philip announced that the army would reassemble at Compiègne on 1 October, an impossibly short interval, and then march to the relief of Calais. Among other consequences, this equivocation allowed Grosmont in the south west to launch offensives into Quercy and the Bazadais; and himself lead a chevauchée160 miles (260 km) north through Saintonge, Aunis and Poitou, capturing numerous towns, castles and smaller fortified places and storming the rich city of Poitiers. These offensives completely disrupted the French defences and shifted the focus of the fighting from the heart of Gascony to 60 miles (97 km) or more beyond its borders. Few French troops had arrived at Compiègne by 1 October and as Philip and his court waited for the numbers to swell, news of Lancaster's conquests came in. Believing that Lancaster was heading for Paris, the French changed the assembly point for any men not already committed to Compiègne to Orléans, and reinforced them with some of those already mustered, to block this. After Lancaster turned south to head back to Gascony, those Frenchmen already at or heading towards Orléans were redirected to Compiègne; French planning collapsed into chaos.
In 1345, while Grosmont was in France, his father died. The younger Henry was now Earl of Lancaster – the wealthiest and most powerful peer of the realm. He also inherited the barony of Halton. After participating in the Siege of Calais in 1347, the king honoured Lancaster by including him as a founding member and the second Knight of the Order of the Garter in 1348.In the same year Alice de Lacy died and her life holdings (which she had retained after Thomas of Lancaster was executed), including the Honour of Bolingbroke and Bolingbroke Castle, passed to Grosmont. A few years later, in 1351, Edward bestowed an even greater honour on Lancaster when he created him Duke of Lancaster. The title of duke was of relatively new origin in England; only one other English ducal title existed previously.
In addition to this, the dukedom was given palatinate powers over the county of Lancashire, which entitled him to administer it virtually independently of the crown.This grant was quite exceptional in English history; only two other counties palatine existed: Durham, which was an ancient episcopal palatinate, and Chester, which was held by the crown.
It is a sign of Edward's high regard for Lancaster that he bestowed such extensive privileges on him. The two men were second cousins through their great-grandfather King Henry III and practically coeval (Edward was born in 1312), so it is natural to assume that a strong sense of camaraderie existed between them. Another factor that might have influenced the king's decision was the fact that Henry had no male heir, so the grant was made for the Earl's lifetime only, and not intended to be hereditary.
Lancaster spent the 1350s intermittently campaigning and negotiating peace treaties with the French. In 1350 he was present at the naval victory at Battle of Les Espagnols sur Mer (Winchelsea), where he allegedly saved the lives of the Black Prince and John of Gaunt,sons of Edward III. The years 1351–1352 he spent on crusade in Prussia. It was here that a quarrel with Otto, Duke of Brunswick, almost led to a duel between the two men, narrowly averted by the intervention of King John II of France. In the later half of the decade campaigning in France resumed. After a chevauchée in Normandy in 1356 and the Siege of Rennes (1356–57), Lancaster participated in the last great offensive of the first phase of the Hundred Years' War: the Rheims campaign of 1359–1360. Then he was appointed principal negotiator for the Treaty of Brétigny, where the English achieved very favourable terms.
By the time he died in 1361 Henry had participated in 15 military missions, leading 6 of them; been the King's lieutenant 7 times; led 6 significant embassies; and taken part in 12 truce conferences.
After returning to England in November 1360, he fell ill early the next year, and died at Leicester Castle on 23 March 1361. It is possible that the cause of death was the plague, which that year was making a second visitation to England.Mortimer argues against plague being the cause of death, as:
He was buried in the Church of the Annunciation of Our Lady of the Newarke, Leicester, which he had built within the religious and charitable institution founded by his father next to Leicester Castle, and where he had reburied his father some years previously.
Grosmont's mother died when he was about 12, and at about age 18 he married Isabel of Beaumont; daughter of Henry de Beaumont, Earl of Buchan and veteran campaigner of the First War of Scottish Independence. Grosmont and Isabel were to have two daughters. The eldest was Maud of Lancaster (4 April 1340 – 10 April 1362), who married William I, Duke of Bavaria in 1352.The younger was Blanche of Lancaster (25 March 1345/1347 – 12 September 1368), who married her third cousin John of Gaunt (1340–1399); the third of five surviving sons of King Edward III. Gaunt inherited Lancaster's possessions, and he was granted the ducal title the following year, but it was not until 1377, when the dying King Edward III was largely incapacitated, that he was able to recover the palatinate rights for the County of Lancaster. When Gaunt's son by Blanche, Henry of Bolingbroke, usurped the crown in 1399 and became King Henry IV, the vast Lancaster inheritance, including the Honour of Bolingbroke and the Lordship of Bowland, was merged with the Crown as the Duchy of Lancaster.
More is known about Lancaster's character than that of most of his contemporaries through his memoirs, the Livre de seyntz medicines ("Book of the Holy Doctors"), a highly personal treatise on matters of religion and piety, also containing details of historical interest. It reveals that Lancaster, at the age of 44 when he wrote the book in 1354, suffered from gout.The book is primarily a devotional work, organised around seven wounds which Henry claimed to have received, representing the seven deadly sins. Lancaster confesses to his sins, explains various real and mythical medical remedies in terms of their theological symbolism, and exhorts the reader to greater morality.
A third generation of the House of Lancaster, Henry was related to the most prominent people in early 14th-century England.
Maddicott, J. R. (1970). Thomas of Lancaster, 1307–1322: A study in the reign of Edward II . London: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-821837-0.
John of Gaunt was an English prince, military leader, and statesman. He was the third of the five sons of King Edward III of England who survived to adulthood. Due to his royal origin, advantageous marriages, and some generous land grants, Gaunt was one of the richest men of his era, and was an influential figure during the reigns of both his father, Edward, and his nephew, Richard II. As Duke of Lancaster, he is the founder of the royal House of Lancaster, whose members would ascend to the throne after his death. His birthplace, Ghent, corrupted into English as Gaunt, was the origin for his name. When he became unpopular later in life, a scurrilous rumour circulated, along with lampoons, claiming that he was actually the son of a Ghent butcher. This rumour, which infuriated him, may have been inspired by the fact that Edward III had not been present at his birth.
The House of Lancaster was a cadet branch of the royal House of Plantagenet. The first house was created when King Henry III of England created the Earldom of Lancaster—from which the house was named—for his second son Edmund Crouchback in 1267. Edmund had already been created Earl of Leicester in 1265 and was granted the lands and privileges of Simon de Montfort, 6th Earl of Leicester, after de Montfort's death and attainder at the end of the Second Barons' War. When Edmund's son Thomas, 2nd Earl of Lancaster, inherited his father-in-law's estates and title of Earl of Lincoln he became at a stroke the most powerful nobleman in England, with lands throughout the kingdom and the ability to raise vast private armies to wield power at national and local levels. This brought him—and Henry, his younger brother—into conflict with their cousin King Edward II, leading to Thomas's execution. Henry inherited Thomas's titles and he and his son, who was also called Henry, gave loyal service to Edward's son King Edward III.
Henry, 3rd Earl of Leicester and Lancaster was a grandson of King Henry III (1216–1272) of England and was one of the principals behind the deposition of King Edward II (1307–1327), his first cousin.
The title of Earl of Lancaster was created in the Peerage of England in 1267. It was succeeded by the title Duke of Lancaster in 1351, which expired in 1361.
The siege of Calais occurred at the conclusion of the Crécy campaign, when an English army under the command of King Edward III of England successfully besieged the French town of Calais during the Edwardian phase of the Hundred Years' War.
The Battle of Blanchetaque was fought on 24 August 1346 between an English army under King Edward III and a French force commanded by Godemar du Fay. The battle was part of the Crécy campaign, which took place during the early stages of the Hundred Years' War. After landing in the Cotentin Peninsula on 12 July, the English army had burnt a path of destruction through some of the richest lands in France to within 20 miles (32 km) of Paris, sacking a number of towns on the way. The English then marched north, hoping to link up with an allied Flemish army which had invaded from Flanders. They were outmanoeuvred by the French king, Philip VI, who garrisoned all of the bridges and fords over the River Somme and followed the English with his own field army. The area had previously been stripped of food stocks by the French, and the English were essentially trapped.
The Battle of Auberoche was fought on 21 October 1345 during the Gascon campaign of 1345 between an Anglo-Gascon force of 1,200 men under Henry, Earl of Derby, and a French army of 7,000 commanded by Louis of Poitiers. It was fought at the village of Auberoche near Périgueux in northern Aquitaine. At the time, Gascony was a territory of the English Crown and the "English" army included a large proportion of native Gascons. The battle resulted in a heavy defeat for the French, who suffered very high casualties, with their leaders killed or captured.
The Battle of Caen was an assault conducted on 26 July 1346 by forces from the Kingdom of England, led by King Edward III, on the French-held town of Caen and Normandy as a part of the Hundred Years' War.
The Battle of Bergerac was fought between Anglo-Gascon and French forces at the town of Bergerac, Gascony, in August 1345 during the Hundred Years' War. In early 1345 Edward III of England decided to launch a major attack on the French from the north, while sending smaller forces to Brittany and Gascony, the latter being both economically important to the English war effort and the proximate cause of the war. The French focused on the threat to northern France, leaving comparatively small forces in the south-west.
The Second War of Scottish Independence (1332–1357) was the second cluster of a series of military campaigns fought between the Kingdom of Scotland and the Kingdom of England in the late 13th and the early 14th centuries.
The Gascon campaign of 1345 was conducted by Henry, Earl of Derby, as part of the Hundred Years' War. The whirlwind campaign took place between August and November 1345 in Gascony, an English-controlled territory in south-west France. Derby, commanding an Anglo-Gascon force, oversaw the first successful English land campaign of the war. He twice defeated large French armies in battle, taking many noble and knightly prisoners. They were ransomed by their captors, greatly enriching Derby and his soldiers in the process. Following this campaign, morale and prestige swung England's way in the border region between English-occupied Gascony and French-ruled territory, providing an influx of taxes and recruits for the English armies. As a result, France's ability to raise tax money and troops from the region was much reduced.
The siege of Aiguillon, an episode in the Hundred Years' War, began on 1 April 1346 when a French army commanded by John, Duke of Normandy, laid siege to the Gascon town of Aiguillon. The town was defended by an Anglo-Gascon army under Ralph, Earl of Stafford.
Lancaster's chevauchée of 1346 was a series of offensives directed by Henry, Earl of Lancaster, in southwestern France during autumn 1346, as a part of the Hundred Years' War.
The Crécy campaign was a series of large-scale raids (chevauchées) conducted by the Kingdom of England throughout northern France in 1346 that devastated the French countryside on a wide front, culminating in the eponymous Battle of Crécy. The campaign was part of the Hundred Years' War.
The Black Prince's chevauchée of 1356, which began on 4 August at Bordeaux and ended with the Battle of Poitiers on 19 September, was a devastating raid of Edward of Woodstock, Prince of Wales, the eldest son of King Edward III of England. This expedition of the Black Prince devastated large parts of Bergerac, Périgord, Nontronnais, Confolentais, Nord-Ouest, Limousin, La Marche, Boischaut, Champagne Berrichonne, Berry, Sologne, south of Touraine and Poitou.
The Black Prince's chevauchée, also known as the grande chevauchée, was a large-scale mounted raid carried out by an Anglo-Gascon force under the command of Edward, the Black Prince, between 5 October and 2 December 1355 as a part of the Hundred Years' War. John, Count of Armagnac, who commanded the local French forces, avoided battle, and there was little fighting during the campaign.
Lancaster's chevauchée of 1356 in Normandy was an English offensive directed by Henry, Earl of Lancaster, in northern France during 1356, as a part of the Hundred Years' War. The offensive took the form of a chevauchée, a large mounted raid and lasted from 22 June to 13 July. During its final week the English were pursued by a much larger French army under King John II that failed to force them to battle.
Lancaster's Loire campaign was the march south from Brittany in August 1356 by an English army led by Henry, Duke of Lancaster. He was attempting to join the army of Edward, the Black Prince, near Tours. The French had broken the bridges over the River Loire and Lancaster was forced to turn back, returning to Brittany in September.
The siege of Breteuil was the investment of the Norman town of Breteuil, held by partisans of Charles II, King of Navarre, by French forces. It lasted from April to about 20 August 1346. It was interrupted on 5 July when a small English army commanded by Henry, Earl of Lancaster relieved and resupplied it. The French king, John II attempted to bring Lancaster to battle with the much larger French royal army, but Lancaster marched away and the attempt failed. John then renewed the siege of Breteuil.
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