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Henry IIIThe Rise to Power and Personal Rule, 1207-1258$
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David Carpenter

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780300238358

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300238358.001.0001

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Gascony and the International Context 1243–1252

Gascony and the International Context 1243–1252

(p.489) Chapter 9 Gascony and the International Context 1243–1252
Henry III

David Carpenter

Yale University Press

This chapter describes how, before his departure from Gascony in the autumn of 1243, Henry III had worked hard to set the province to rights. He had toured the duchy, reconciled competing factions, maintained his rights, and bolstered the defences against external attack, or at least tried to do so. But, as a would-be conqueror of Gascony had once said, it was like trying to plough the seashore. For the next ten years, Henry was never free from Gascon worries. They led him in 1248 to place the duchy under Simon de Montfort and, when that ended in disaster, they forced him in 1253 to go there himself, despite being now pledged to go on crusade. Henry's concentration on Gascony and commitment to the crusade reflected the more general international situation, which left him with little else to do. There was no chance of attempting to recover the lost continental empire. Indeed, the ten years between Henry's two sojourns in Gascony in 1243 and 1253 saw a significant shift in the European balance of power towards the Capetian kings of France.

Keywords:   Gascony, Henry III, Simon de Monfort, international situation, continental empire, Europe, Capetian kings, France

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