An Alternative History of Britain : The Hundred Years War
Continuing his exploration of the alternative paths that British history might so easily have taken, Timothy Venning turns his attention to the Hundred Years War between England and France. Could the English have won in the long term, or, conversely, have been decisively defeated sooner?
Among the many scenarios discussed are what would have happened if the Black Prince had not died prematurely of the Black Death, leaving the 10-year-old Richard to inherit Edward IIIs crown. What would have been the consequences if France's Scottish allies had been victorious at Neville's Cross in 1346, while most English forces were occupied in France? What if Henry V had recovered from the dysentery that killed him at 35, giving time for his son Henry VI to inherit the combined crowns of France and England as a mature (and half-French) man rather than an infant controlled by others? And what if Joan of Arc had not emerged to galvanize French resistance at Orleans?
While necessarily speculative, all the scenarios are discussed within the framework of a deep understanding of the major driving forces, tensions and trends that shaped British history and help to shed light upon them. In so doing they help the reader to understand why things panned out as they did, as well as what might have been in this fascinating period that still arouses such strong passions on both sides of the Channel.