When Edward III came to the throne of England in 1327, England's military reputation had reached a low ebb. The young king's first campaign against the Scots was a complete failure, and the next year the shameful peace' set the seal on Robert Bruce's victory in the First Scottish War of Independence. Twenty-two years later, however, King Jean II of France and King David II of Scotland were both prisoners in London, an English army was camped outside Paris, and Edward was widely considered the most skilful warrior in the world. Clifford Rogers uses contemporary documents (campaign bulletins, administrative documents, and excerpts from 29 different chronicles) to tell the story of the battles, sieges, and chevauchees that produced this remarkable reversal - and the subsequent restoration of French fortunes under Du Guesclin and Charles V. The majority of the texts employed have never before been translated into modern English (and a number have never been published before in any language). Complementing these primary source materials are eight classic articles covering the Scottish Wars, the outbreak of the Hundred Years War, the recruitment, organisation and supply of English armies, English strategy and war aims, and the war's impact on French society and on the development of Parliament in England. Together, they provide a complete introduction to the topic. Dr CLIFFORD ROGERS teaches at the United States Military Academy at West Point.
Readers will receive a real insight into the mentality and logic of war in the middle ages and an understanding of its stark realities... excellent and very welcome resource book. HISTORY TODAY
Of great value... A good introduction to the history of the war, the chief primary and secondary sources, and ... scholarly questions and trends. JOURNAL OF MILITARY HISTORY
Original and valuable work on chronicle material, including a number of previously unnoticed and/or unpublished sources... Scholarship owes much to Rogers. FRENCH HISTORY The sources are well chosen... The action moves along at a lively pace. Th[e] second part reprints a selection of studies most scholars would pronounce classic... This book will be a useful reference collection even for specialists and will provide rich lodes of ore for students engaged in research projects. ALBION [Richard Kaeuper] This collection of sources and interpretations lays bare the truth about the wars of Edward's reign... Dr Rogers has provided a valuable service to scholars, students and general readers alike in bringing together this fascinating collection. MATTHEW BENNETT [General editor's preface]