HVIII in England and Europe (Foreign policy) (Relations with France to 1521)


Foreign policy

Relations with France to 1521

Relations with Fr were fraught from the start of the reign as the new King dreamed of war against Fr to reclaim the ancient right of the Eng ings to the throne of FR

One interest group on the Counsel advised HII to avoid such a costly overseass commitment, however,another faction counselled war against Fr. The anti-war faction heloed the early advantage, Archbishop Warham and Richard Fox advised the King to:
-Secure a peace treaty with Fr in March 1510
-Discuss the possibilties of war with Counsel in 1511, then dismiss the proposal as expensive and dangerous

From 1511, however, the anti-war faction lost ground to the ascendant pro-war faction led by the Earl of Surrey. There are several reasons for this change in political fortunes
1)By 1511, Surrey had won the argument in favour of war against France in Counsel
2) Catherine of Aragon encouraged her new husband, Hviii to declare war against France- She knew such actions would reinforce her father's position as he annexed the kingdom of Navarre from FR
3)One of the key anti-war factions, Lady Margaret Beautfort, died a few months after her son. This proved useful to both the king and Thomas Wolsey
4)The international situation chnaged. The League of Cambrai formed in 1508 by the Pope to attack Venice had been too successfull. The FR in particular had considerable success in northern Italy, and the Pope now saw the FR as a threat. He resumed his previous policy of playing off FR and SP against each other by forming the Holy League in 1511. The HL was a papal, Spanish and Venetian alliance against FR, which Eng joined in Nov 1511

H was drawn in 1511 into the anti-FR HL with the Pope, Venetians, Swiss and Ferd of Sp. The HL was diplomatic preparation for his first war against FR.
By 1513, he also had an alliance with the emperor Max. The war eventually provided H with several desired victories in northern FR but proved to be a short lived success- in 1514, H was deserted by both his allies, Ferd and Max so had to make terms with Fr

The war against FR

By Feb 1512, H was in a position to move towards a declaration of war against FR by resting the ancient claim of the King of Eng to the Kingdom


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