Edward's War

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Edward's War

King Edward III's military tactics were the sole reason for the English victory at Crecy in 1346. Not only that, he was the reason for English success overall in the early stages of The Hundred Years War. The war was started because of a feudal dynastic struggle over the Duchy of Aquitaine, and also the French throne. The first major battle was dominated by Edward, it took place at Sluys in 1340. It was a naval battle, that despite his inexperience as an admiral, Edward took the reigns and led his country to a glorious victory over the French navy. After gaining complete access to France through the English Channel Edward led his men into France, and a battle that is placed among the greatest victories of all time. The battle of Crecy took place on August 26th 1346, Edward placed his men in defensive positions in between the towns of Crecy and Wadicourt. He then waited while the Massive French army of nearly 25,000 prepared for battle. The English men, 11,000 strong watched as the first line of French began their attack, they continued to watch as they were driven away by a rain of arrows. This was the theme of the battle. Edward's strategy was perfect, and the English suffered minor casualties. In the end, Crecy left the French questioning themselves. The Hundred Years War shifted to the favour of the English, at least during the first third of the war, in what most call, Edward's war.

The English inheritance of the Duchy of Aquitaine began when Eleanor of Aquitaine married King Henry II in 1152. Edward III inherited it when he became king in 1327. Edward also had the right to lay claim to the French throne when King Charles IV died in 1328. Charles was the last remaining son of Phillip IV, all three of Phil...

... middle of paper ... Edward's great strength, as was his skill in choosing ground and deploying units to suit it". This was the theme of the first major battles of The Hundred Years War. Edward dominated the war with his great tactics, his ability to control his men, and his wonderful presence around his men. Edward made the French doubt themselves. They questioned themselves, and no one was there to answer it, at least not until the 15th century, long after Edward's death. The French were in pieces after Crecy, their greatest warrior, the knight was one of the most ineffective soldiers in battle. Edward, in his battles, was able to make numbers a disadvantage, he would turn a mighty host of enemy soldiers into a stampeding mob. This is why King Edward III was such a dominant factor in the Hundred Years War, and also why the first forty years of the war, is now called, Edward's War.
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