The century of war, plague [pleig] and disorder - characteristics.
The 14th century was disastrous for Britain, population died of plague.
In the 1330s England began a long struggle against French Crown - exhausting economically.
Increased the political strength of the merchants and gentry.
Parliament against the king.
A new class of armed men in the countryside.
Weakened respect for the crown and encouraged repeated struggles.
War with Scotland and France.
Scots turned to the King of France e "Auld Alliance" lasted into the sixteenth century.
Whenever England attacked one of them, the other would make trouble behind England's back.
Edward III declared war on France in 1337, he claimed the right to the French Crown. e "Hundred Years War". England losing all its possessions in France except for Calais.
English army was experienced - Welsh longbow, quick rate of fire.
Crécy 1346, Poitiers 1356, French king bought his freedom for £500.000.
Calais, Cherbourg, Brest, Bordeaux and Bayonne were taken back by French forces during the next fifteen years. .
The age of chivalry.
Edward III + eldest son the Black Prince - symbols of the "code of chivalry": if insulted, served God and the king, and defended any lady in need.
Legend: Once, lady at court accidentally dropped her garter and Edward III noticed some of his courtiers laughing at her. He picked up the garter and tied it to his own leg, saying in French, "Honi soit qui mal y pense," which meant "let him be ashamed who sees wrong it." e Order of Garter was founded. It's a motto of royal family.
The century of plagues.
Black Death, more than one-third of entire population of Britain died. One person in ten who caught the plague managed to survive it.
Land was no longer allowed to rest one year in three e over-used.
In 1300 about 1 million citizens, by the end of century hardly half that figure.
Landlords letting out their land to energetic freeman farmers "yeoman".