On the campaign trail: walking the Hundred Years War

Historian article

By Peter Hoskins, published 19th October 2015

In the tradition of landscape historians, Peter Hoskins has explored some of the route marches taken by English armies during the Hundred Years War.

After the battle of Crécy in 1346 and the capture of Calais by Edward III in the following year the Hundred Years War settled into an uneasy truce which was due to end in the summer of 1355. Early in that the year there were signs of a return to war with French incursions into English Aquitaine. Edward III sent his eldest son, Edward of Woodstock,the Black Prince, to Bordeaux with around 2,600 men to reinforce loyal Gascons. In the autumn of 1355 the prince led a chevauchée, a mounted expedition generally characterised by the devastation and pillaging of towns, villages and crops, as far as Narbonne on the Mediterranean coast and back to Aquitaine. The following year he led a further chevauchée north to the Loire and on his way south back towards Bordeaux won his great victory over the French at Poitiers on 19 September 1356...

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