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The University of Southampton

HIST3254 The Hundred Years War: 1337-1453, Part 2

Module Overview

The conflict that raged between the Plantagenet and the Valois kings from 1337 to 1453, and spread over the whole of Occidental Europe, turned out to be the longest military struggle in history. In this module, you will explore how the Hundred Years War shaped the fate of two kingdoms, two nations and two peoples at the threshold of modernity. A wide variety of primary sources in translation (ex. treaties, treatises, manifestos, contracts, chronicles, legal suits, ordinances, royal remissions, official and private correspondences) will give you the opportunity to discuss key historical themes and debates, such as the rise of modern state, military revolutions, the cost of war, 'bastard feudalism' and the waning of the middle ages. Part 2 focuses on the fifteenth century phase of the war, from 1396 to 1453, which distinguishes itself from its earlier phase by a political and military shift from raids to conquest, occupation and the union of the two crowns under Henry V and Henry VI. You will explore this fundamental change in the nature of the conflict and its wider social, economic and cultural implications. Was the union of the two crowns doomed to failure? Why did the English eventually lose the war? You will assess different factors contributing to the English defeat, such as French military reforms, the rise of gunpowder, and the English growing disaffection for war. But for this assessment to be truly effective, you will also deconstruct a pervasive and deceiving French discourse which celebrates the inevitable reunion of the French subjects with their natural sovereign.

Aims and Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • The events and effects of the Hundred Years War from 1396 up to its end in 1453
  • A range of primary sources and evidence, pertaining to topics of study, that indicate different viewpoints and subjects of controversy in this period
  • The ways historians have approached the study of Hundred Years War in the fifteenth century
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • analyse critically a variety of textual, visual and oral history evidence from the period
  • marshal the arguments and evidence you find in your research into well-organised essays
  • understand and contextualize primary source material and apply this in assessed exercises
  • Engage with seminal and recent historiographical texts on that subject
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • identify and use relevant textual, visual, oral history sources in the library and on-line
  • refine your skills in time-management
  • work independently to identify and solve problems


Topics to be covered in the second semester of the course may include: • A victory against the odds: the battle of Agincourt, 1415 • The English conquest of Normandy, 1417-1419 • The treaty of Troyes, 1420, and the concept of a dual monarchy • A military occupation? Lancastrian Normandy, 1417-1450 • The Norman brigand or the Norman resistant? • Joan of Arc and the French nation • France, England and the Burgundian state • Politics, Propaganda and the French 'recovery' of Normandy, 1449-1450 • Gunpowder and the military revolution • The laws of war: war, ethics and politics in the fifteenth century

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Teaching methods include: • presentations by students on secondary reading and primary sources • small and large group discussions • structured in-depth reading and analysis of the module texts • Student-led seminars, with the module convenor acting as guide and learning facilitator Learning activities include: • preparatory reading, individual research and study prior to each class • preparing and delivering short presentations relating to aspects of the module, as directed by the tutor • close study of textual, visual and oral history primary sources • participation in small and large group discussion

Independent Study252
Total study time300

Resources & Reading list

Prestwich, M., A short history of the Hundred Years War (London, 2018).. 

Curry, A., ed., The Hundred Years War Revisited (London, 2019).. 

Green, D., The Hundred Years War: A People’s History (Yale, 2014).. 

Ambühl R., and Lambert, C., eds., Agincourt in context. War on land and sea (London and New York, 2018). 



MethodPercentage contribution
Essay  (4000 words) 50%
Exam  (3 hours) 50%


MethodPercentage contribution
Essay  (4000 words) 50%
Exam  (3 hours) 50%


MethodPercentage contribution
Essay  (4000 words) 50%
Exam  (3 hours) 50%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

Linked modules

HIST3aXX - The Hundred Years War: 1337-1453, Part 1


To study this module, you will need to have studied the following module(s):

HIST3253The Hundred Years War: 1337-1453, Part 1
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