England and France: The War of a Hundred Years Essay

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In the time of knights and kings, known as the Middle Ages, one of the only ways to acquire power was through the social standing of one's family. Of course, if you were to have siblings there would be some contest over who acquires what in the event of the passing of a family member. This kind of argument is the base for which The Hundreds Years' War began, with the death of the French king Charles IV in 1328. Edward III, duke of Guyenne and the count of Ponithieu; provinces in France. After Charles IV's death Edward III claimed the throne of France, stating that because he had no sons and his mother was Charles IV's sister, he had succession rights. The "War" officially started when Edward III brought an army to the French province of …show more content…
When Charles V became the King of France, he was confronted with the daunting task of commanding a France without and effective army or any money, as he was "literally forced to pay a king's ransom to England," (Hundred Years War, 31). On top of that "most of the countryside was overrun with gangs of unemployed mercenaries, who were little more than bandits." (Hundred Years War, 31). After a long while Charles IV stabilized France and reigned in the Dukedom of Brittany, who was attempting to become an independent nation. To attempt to quell the situation Charles IV "instituted a strict system of taxation designed to fill the royal treasury" (Hundred Years War, 35) this allowed the mercenaries that were terrorizing the countryside roaming to be, once again, employed. With the situation stabilized Charles IV allied himself with the Spanish Kingdom of Castile in order to have an ally to help France in the event of a renewed war with England. In 1369 he invaded English controlled Aquitaine and developed a strategy that used hit-and-run attacks instead of major battles. These attacks, along with quick and devastating sieges, allowed him to drive out the English from Aquitaine and reclaim the land for France. At the age of forty-two, Charles IV died leaving behind a mixed legacy of military greatness, public service, and learning, this however was not enough for France to thrive in the long-term. His quick fix policies and the mental

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