• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Analyse the Reasons why Philip II (1180-1223) was able to establish France as a major power in Medieval Europe

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Analyse the Reasons why Philip II (1180-1223) was able to establish France as a major power in Medieval Europe By the time of Philip's death in 1223, the demesne controlled by the French monarch was over four times greater than the land controlled by his father Louis VII. Philip had successfully overcome opponents from both the Angevin and German Empires and directly caused the disintegration of the Angevin Empire in Europe under King John. He established a French Kingdom which was far more financially stable and diplomatically important in the politics of Medieval Europe as well as militarily stronger compared to its opponents. Part of the reason for Philip's drastic enlargement of French royal authority was the platform obtained by the accomplishments of his predecessors in providing a stable kingdom from which power could be acquired. However, the weakness of his opponents; especially that of King John certainly aided Philip's geographical expansion into areas such as Western France. The absence of many nobles due to the continuing crusades also aided Philip in his consolidation of power. Another significant reason for Philip's success was a stronger military force and military presence than had been used by France before. Also Philip's advancement of the administrative system in Paris helped establish what can be described as a cultural and financial revival. The Feudo-Vassalic hierarchy established by Philip's Capetian predecessors is of undeniable importance for Philip during his reign. This system was rigorously enforced by Philip throughout his reign, especially the importance given to paying homage and positioning himself as overlord and top of the feudal pyramid. ...read more.

Middle

Such techniques were deployed not just against the Angevin monarchs but also against powerful Counts and Dukes bordering France like Blois and Champagne. Philip took advantage of the death of Theobald of Champagne in order to perform a political intervention due to his connections through his mother; a similar situation arose in Burgundy with the death of Duke Odo II in 1218. These direct attempts to assert royal authority not only increased the geographical extent of royal control but also increased the reliance placed on the French monarchy in monitoring affairs and selecting successors and thus creating an ideal environment for Philip to govern within Europe. Philip's aggravation of the Angevin disputes, which continued through the reigns of Henry II and Richard, should not be considered a new concept but rather a continuation of Capetian policy towards the Angevin monarchs, this was certainly successful in weakening the Angevin empire internally which would have made later conquests easier. What is however a change is Philip's continued use of military support in invasions; this can be seen through his invasion of Berry in 1187 and confrontations in Le Mans in 1189. Philip achieved his greatest successes against John; his experience, reputation and popularity were key to success in Angevin continental lands. John had little experience of military command and war compared not just to Philip but to his predecessors; Henry II and Richard. Unlike the other three figures, John has never been on crusade and had limited experience in military campaigns, for example his campaign in Ireland during the reign of Henry II was ultimately a disaster. ...read more.

Conclusion

Therefore, the move to Paris of all records can be seen as immensely beneficial to the financial stability and economic wealth of the monarch. Secondly, Philip broke the power of key influential families within the offices of administration. Such families had seen the positions as hereditary and used it to gain power and wealth, therefore by appointing lesser nobles, and in some cases leaving positions such as chancellor vacant, Philip was asserting his own power amongst those in his demesne and establishing himself as overlord. In conclusion, the combination of legal authority obtained from the feudal system established by his predecessors, and military force, proved to be incredibly successful in expanding the French demesne and increasing the sphere of influence. In some ways Philip was fortunate to receive advantageous circumstances for expansion such as the political backdrop of the third and fourth crusades and the weakness of his enemies in both the Angevin and German Empires. However, Philip capitalised on these advantages through aggressive leadership, both politically and militarily, and the culmination of this at the battle of Bouvines helped consolidate France's position as a major power. Further improvements were made to the administrative system which aided financial wealth of the empire which could be used to continue these foreign policies, which is why it is said that Philip was the last "king of the franks" and first "king of France", such was his impact on establishing a major power in Europe. ?? ?? ?? ?? Simon Lock 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate History section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate History essays

  1. Wilhelm II; the Emperor who lost interest

    John R�hl, a famous British historian, claims that the Kaiser's "personal neuroses must have had a direct impact on the decision-making process in pre-war Germany." He also says the Wilhelm II could easily become obsessed with an idea that everything remotely touching the subject made him go insane.

  2. Women During the Period of Crusades. Crusades were expeditions as well as being ...

    taking up male trades in the absence of men fighting in the Crusades. For instance, women frequently were involved in the protection of towns and castles under bombardment. During the times of the Crusades many husbands and sons would be absent for as long as ten years, many never even

  1. Architectural Masterpieces in England

    It was subsequently acquired by George III in 1761 as a private residence for Queen Charlotte, and known as "The Queen's House". During the 19th century it was enlarged, principally by architects John Nash and Edward Blore, forming three wings around a central courtyard that doubled the size of the building.

  2. To what extent did the Prague spring weaken Moscow(TM)s hold over Czechoslovakia, and Eastern ...

    The Russians were forced to liberalise their rule over Hungary when J�nos K�d�r came to power in 1956 after having deposed three leaders in a space one year. It would take another thirteen years before another revolt against Soviet rule would take place.

  1. Bismarck's policies. While when he was Chancellor, Bismarcks main aim will have been to ...

    was side with the National liberals who were the dominant force in the Reichstag with 125 out of 397 seats. The liberals were opposed to institutions that limited the freedom of the individual. Therefore they were perfect for Bismarck's position in the Kulturkampf in which he fought against the Catholic Church.

  2. Which of indoctrination and repression proved most effective for consolidating Hitler's power (1933-1939)?

    He knew the psychological advantage of having the law at his side. Thus what he was planning to do was ?to make illegal become legal?[10]. The Reichstag fire played a big role in the consolidation of Hitler?s power. Repression: Use of law Reichstag fire: On 27 February 1933, before the

  1. How did the Black Death of 1348 impact on the rivalry for political power ...

    Due to the scarcity of manorial records and other sources, it is impossible to detail the exact extent of mortality , except in Colemanstown in the royal manor of Newcastle Lyons in Co Dublin, where it is said 84% of the tenants were killed by the plague .

  2. Peron's Consolidation of Power

    until Peron’s fall from power in 1955.[7] Furthermore, near the end of 1949, Peron established the Secretariat of Information to control publications by journalists.[8] “The police raided the premises of the daily newspapers ( La Prensa, La Nación, and Clarin), restrictions were placed on the quantity of newsprint at their

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work