New Regime, New Army? Henry IV’s Scottish Expedition of 1400

New Regime, New Army? Henry IV’s Scottish Expedition of 1400

By Anne Curry, Adrian R. Bell, Andy King, and David Simpkin

English Historical Review, Vol. 125 No.517 (2010)

Introduction: It was not unusual for a new king to launch a military campaign early in his reign. Edward III did so against the Scots in 1327 and again in 1333. Richard II led his first expedition against his northern neighbours in 1385 shortly after he turned eighteen. Henry V invaded France in the third year of his reign, culminating in his famous victory at Agincourt. Such campaigns can be explained as a means of enforcing of royal will and testing loyalty towards a newly established regime as much as military endeavours against an external enemy. Henry IV’s expedition to Scotland in 1400 can be placed in this category since it was undertaken less than a year after his usurpation of September 1399. In mid-August 1400, Henry led his army across the border, hoping to subdue Scottish raiding in the Northern Marches and to force the Scots to give homage to him as well as rebuking them for failing to recognise him as king of England. He returned to England two weeks later having gained nothing for his efforts except a vague promise that the Scots would consider his demands.

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