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Fourteenth Century
  • Reinder P. Meijer


The fourteenth century opened with a bang in 1302 when an army of Flemish townspeople defeated an army of French noblemen. In the history of the Low Countries, this battle—known as the Battle of the Golden Spurs—has become a celebrated event, as it was the first successful feat of resistance against the French predominance. It was, however, more important as a symptom than for any lasting results: it did not make Flanders independent of France, but it showed impressively how strong the resistance had grown. There were more revolts against France and also against the French-orientated Count of Flanders, but the Flemish towns still lacked the unity that would be necessary to consolidate their position. The Flemish leader, Jacob van Artevelde, realized this and tried to create some political unity by bringing Flanders and Brabant together in an alliance clearly directed against France. Another attempt towards political unity was made in the middle of the fourteenth century by Jan III, Duke of Brabant, who came to terms with France and then tried to forge Brabant and Limburg into a unit.


Fourteenth Century Political Unity Medieval Literature Courtly Love Floris Versus 
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Copyright information

© Reinder P. Meijer 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • Reinder P. Meijer
    • 1
  1. 1.University of LondonUK

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