Southern Anthology

Families on the Frontiers of the Old South


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Battle of Nájera

Castilian king Pedro I was deposed in 1366 by his bastard half-brother, Enrique of Trastamara, a feat that was accomplished with the backing of the French. Pedro turned to the Prince of Wales, now installed in Aquitaine, but found him cool to the idea of assisting an excommuniced ally of Muslim Grenada and known tyrant. Realpolitik intervened. The contest for throne of Castile provided yet another venue for Edward III to prosecute his ongoing conflict-by-proxy with the French; thus the king eventually rallied the English to Pedro's cause. The fighting (and the bill) fell to Wales. After an inauspicious start in February, Wales thrashed the Spanish at Nájera. The Castilians, advantaged with with superior numbers, were spread on the plain before the town but Wales hit their flank and, once again, the longbow was the difference. Victory was not complete, however. Trastamara made good an escape to France. For the English, the campaign was a tactical success but a strategic failure: Enrique returned after a short respite to topple Pedro and Wales was saddled with the debt of an inconclusive campaign and a fractious nobility that was receptive to the lure of Charles V.

Owner/Source15th century Jean Froissart's Chronicles (Bib. Nat. Fr., FR 2643, fol. 312v). This work is in the public domain in its country of origin and other countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 100 years or less.
File nameNajera_Froissart.jpg
File Size209.89k
Dimensions862 x 768
Linked toTello Alfonso, Seńor de Ledesma (Military); Arnaud Amanieu VIII d'Albret, Seigneur d'Albret (Military); Pedro I de Castilla y León, King of Castile and León (Military); John of Gaunt, 1st Duke Lancaster, KG (Military); Enrique II de Trastámara, King of Castile and León (Military); Edward of Woodstock, Prince of Wales, KG (Military)

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