THE ARMIES OF THE HOUSE OF LUXEMBOURG FROM HENRY V TO JOHN THE BLIND
Warfare, Society and Representation
This project focuses on the armies of the House of Luxembourg from Henry V to John the Blind (1247-1346), specifically analysing its political, social and cultural aspects. During that time, the Luxembourgish dynasty knew a quick ascent with the election of Henry VII as King of the Romans and John as King of Bohemia. The project will focus on the areas under the counts’ authority (county of Luxembourg, Italian lands, lands of the Holy Empire, Bohemia). The thesis project aims to analyse the armies of the House of Luxembourg by focusing on three major themes : their composition, their uses and the perceived image.
First, I will study the structure and composition of a medieval army, meaning the “nobility of arms” who is in command as well as the recruited soldiers. For the former, their origin and motivation are central; for the latter, the recruiting path is essential. The second theme will concentrate on the use of the armies by the counts, not only for military actions, but for symbolic actions as well. By analysing them, the intention is to approach the image of an army wished by the counts and their entourage. Lastly, the project will transcend this desired given image of the armies and examine the perceived image. The issue will be to understand the various reactions of the populations at the arrival of an armed force.
Financial aspects are also to be kept in mind because they could impact politics. Generally, I am interested in changes that could affect the armies due to the counts’ increase of power and influence. Rather than drawing a fixed picture of an army, the project seeks to grasp it as a dynamic phenomenon intimately linked to the dynastic policy of the House of Luxembourg.