R. R. Davies

in The Revolt of Owain Glyn Dŵr

Published in print November 1995 | ISBN: 9780198205081
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191676499 | DOI:

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Owain Glyn Dŵr had not, in the end, been well served by his allies. One by one they had either failed or deserted him. The recurrent failures are a comment on the immense problems of communication and co-ordination, of effective timing, which confronted any medieval alliance; the will for joint activity was often present but the means to make it work in practice was not. Nor could there be any doubt that the Welsh were used as junior, and expendable, partners by their allies: had the Percies dislodged Henry IV in 1403 or 1405 they would almost certainly have reneged on any promises they had made to Glyn Dŵr; as to the French, the solemn promise of July 1404 that the Welsh would be invited to join any peace they made with the English counted for nothing when domestic and international considerations dictated the need for an Anglo-French truce in December 1407. Yet brittle as were all the alliances, formal and informal, Glyn Dŵr had no option but to conclude them; they were the best prospect for the long-term success of his movement.

Keywords: Owain Glyn Dŵr; alliances; revolt; rebellion; Welsh; Percy; France

Chapter.  11557 words. 

Subjects: Medieval and Renaissance History (500 to 1500)

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