Rémy Ambühl

Primary position:
Lecturer in Medieval History
Other positions:
On leave 2015/16


The University of Southampton
Dr Rémy Ambühl's photo

I am a Late Medievalist, specializing in:

the conduct of war:

  • surrender
  • ransoms and prisoners of war
  • the law of arms
  • chivalry, honour and reciprocity

government, society and the social fabric:

  • oath and contracts
  • loyalty and treason
  • sovereignty, kingship and monarchy

France, England and Burgundy:

  • the Hundred Years War (1337-1453)
  • Agincourt (1415)
  • Valois Burgundy (1363-1477)
  • the French crown and aristocracy

Archival research:

  • using (mainly) Paris, Northern France, London and Brussels archives
  • working on an extensive range of documents including petitions, letters of grace and remission, legal cases, contractual agreements, safe-conducts, financial accounts, diplomatic records, news reports and all sorts of correspondence, etc.
  • reading Old French, Anglo-Norman, Middle English and Latin.

I am a member of the Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Culture


The University of Southampton's electronic library (e-prints)


Ambühl, Remy (2007) Le sort des prisonniers d'Azincourt (1415). Revue du Nord, 89, (372), 755-787.
Ambühl, Rémy (2006) A fair share of the profits? The captors of Agincourt. Nottingham Medieval Studies, 50, 129-150. (doi:10.1484/J.NMS.3.396).


Ambühl, R.C. (2013) Prisoners of war in the Hundred Years War, Oxford, GB, Cambridge University Press, 313pp.
Ambühl, Remy (2002) Le séjour du future Louis XI dans les pays de Philippe le Bon (1456-61), Cercle d’Histoire et d’Archéologie du pays de Genappe, 222pp. (Cahier, 13).

Book Section

Ambühl, R.C. (2011) Ransoms. In, Martel, Gordon (ed.) The Encyclopedia of War. London, GB, Blackwell. (doi:10.1002/9781444338232.wbeow511).
Ambühl, R.C. (2011) The English reversal of fortunes in the 1370s and the experience of prisoners of war. In, Bell, Adrian, Curry, Anne and Chapman, Adam (eds.) The Soldier Experience in the Fourteenth Century. Woodbridge, GB, Boydell Press, 191-207. (Warfare in History).

Conference or Workshop Item

Ambühl, R.C. (2012) The price of freedom: ransoms and prisoners in the hundred years war. The Hundred Years War: a Century of Conflict Re-evaluated, London, GB, 29 Sep 2012. (Submitted).
Ambühl, R.C. (2012) Negotiated surrender of castles and urban communities at the end of the Hundred Years War. Medieval Warfare: Laws & Limits, Scotland, GB, 02 Jun 2012.


Key research projects are:

1. The crisis of capitulation: surrender of castles and urban communities (1400-1450)

Surrender - a key concept to the ‘culture of war' - has a controversial issue across history and cultures, representing a sustained threat to the safety of civilians and soldiers. Surrender is central to international and civil wars in fifteenth-century France and England, which were arguably not lost or won on the battlefield (e.g. Agincourt) but before or within the walls of towns and castles through negotiation. The hypothesis lies at the heart of the project which will fill a gap in our understanding of the conduct of war and make significant contribution to the psychology of surrender.

The work on this project has been funded by The Leverhulme Trust through their Early Career Fellowship scheme from 1 January 2012 to 1 January 2014. I have collected a vast amount of documents during this period which will form the basis of a research monograph and various other published outcomes.  I have given papers on different aspects of this topic (ex.: St Andrews, Leeds, Nancy, Lille, Winchester and Cambridge) and I am keen to receive invitations to speak.

2. Prisoners of war in the Late Middle Ages

This has resulted in a book on Prisoners of War in the Hundred Years War: Ransom Culture in the Late Middle Ages (Cambridge University Press, 2013).

The status of prisoners of war was firmly rooted in the practice of ransoming in the Middle Ages. By the opening stages of the Hundred Years War, ransoming had become widespread among the knightly community, and the crown had already begun to exercise tighter control over the practice of war. This led to tensions between public and private interests over ransoms and prisoners of war. Historians have long emphasised the significance of the French and English crowns' interference in the issue of prisoners of war, but this original and stimulating study questions whether they have been too influenced by the state-centred nature of most surviving sources. Based on extensive archival research, this book tests customs, laws and theory against the individual experiences of captors and prisoners during the Hundred Years War, to evoke their world in all its complexity.

Media Coverage:
BBC (24 January 2013)
Standaard (6 May 2013)

Online Academic Review - August 2013

Leverhulme Trust Logo

Leverhulme Trust Logo

Leverhulme Trust Logo

POV in the 100 Year War

POV in the 100 Year War

POV in the 100 Year War

Teaching Responsibilities

Hist 2036: The Hundred Years War

HIST 2069: Knights and Chivalry in the Late Middle Ages

HIST 3189 (Part 2): War and Society (c. 1300-c. 1450)

CMRC 6011: From Medieval To Renaissance: Reading the Evidence (please also see document below)  

Areas where I can offer postgraduate supervision:

  • Late Medieval Warfare, especially the conduct of war (ethics, laws, rules and values)
  • Chivalry
  • Hundred Years War
  • Late Medieval France

Useful downloads


Dr Rémy Ambühl
Building 65 Faculty of Humanities University of Southampton Avenue Campus Highfield Southampton SO17 1BF United Kingdom

Room Number: 65A/2129

Telephone: (023) 8059 7520
Email: ra4c09@soton.ac.uk