This thesis will examine the juxtaposition of the duchy of Gascony's importance to the Plantagenet Crown with the difficulties administering the region and protecting it from French interference during the late-thirteenth and early-fourteenth centuries, resulting in the necessity of securing the loyalty of Gascon nobles for assistance. The lords of Albret were powerful allies under Edward I (1272-1307), and their defection to the French under his son, Edward II (1307-1327), put Plantagenet Gascony in a vulnerable position when the Hundred Years War began in 1337. Resecuring the loyalty of Albret – and other powerful Gascon lords – was crucial for the English to return Gascony to its pre-war boundaries. It also proved difficult as Gascon nobles had to navigate the complicated feudal relationship wherein they owed fealty to the duke of Aquitaine – a title held by the king of England – who in turn owed fealty to the king of France. These nobles frequently decided their loyalty based on self-interest; the lords of Albret were no exception. Gascony was important to the Plantagenet kings for its wine trade, strategic location, and as the last of their continental hereditary lands. Having a loyal base of noblemen was imperative for military success in Gascony, especially given the scope of the war and the dearth of available troops to send to the duchy. The lord of Albret provided strength and men to the English cause and was well compensated in return. Through the lens of the Gascon rolls, this work will examine the methods used by the Plantagenet kings to obtain and secure Gascon loyalty and why the Gascon noblemen provided this allegiance.
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Master of Arts (M.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Delaney, Jason, "The Loyalty of the Lords of Albret: An Investigation of the Gascon Rolls at the Outset of the Hundred Years War" (2022). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2020-. 996.