Brézé, Pierre de, Seneschal of Normandy
- (c. 1408–1465)A friend of Queen MARGARET OF ANJOU, Pierre de Brézé, seneschal of Normandy, fought for the Lancastrians in the northern campaigns of the early 1460s. A vassal of Margaret’s father, de Brézé became one of the chief ministers and military commanders of CHARLES VII, and took part in the negotiations that led to Margaret’s marriage to HENRY VI in 1445. The queen’s connections with de Brézé led to rumors that Margaret had instigated the seneschal’s raid on Sandwich in August 1457 to help her win her power struggle with Richard PLANTAGENET, duke of York. This charge has been dismissed by modern historians, but Margaret did appeal to de Brézé for French naval assis- BRÉZÉ, PIERRE DE, SENESCHAL OF NORMANDY 37 tance in 1460 to prevent York’s ally, Richard NEVILLE, earl of Warwick, from returning to England from his base at CALAIS. After the Lancastrian defeat at the Battle of TOWTON in March 1461, Charles VII allowed de Brézé, who had been advocating French support for the house of LANCASTER since 1459, to assemble a fleet and attack the English Channel Islands.De Brézé seized Jersey in May, but the death of Charles VII in July ended the Seneschal’s efforts on Margaret’s behalf, for LOUIS XI, the new French king, stripped de Brézé of his of- fices and imprisoned him in Loches Castle. Never on good terms with his father, Louis distrusted de Brézé for his past loyalty to Charles. In April 1462, Margaret secured de Brézé’s release as part of the Franco-Lancastrian CHINON AGREEMENT, whereby Louis lent money to the queen in return for her surrender of Calais. Although Louis’s enthusiasm for the alliance faded when the Burgundians denied him access to Calais, he allowed de Brézé to accompany Margaret and her son Prince EDWARD OF LANCASTER to SCOTLAND in October. Commanding 800 French troops in his own pay, the seneschal and the Lancastrian royal family landed near BAMBURGH CASTLE in Northumberland on 25 October. Although Bamburgh and the neighboring castles of ALNWICK and DUNSTANBURGH quickly submitted to Henry VI, Margaret and de Brézé, believing themselves too weak to face the army EDWARD IV was bringing against them, retreated to Scotland in November. The royal family and de Brézé arrived safely in BERWICK only after a local fisherman rescued them from their foundering vessel. De Brézé’s troops were less fortunate, being forced ashore on Lindisfarne, where most were killed or captured by the local inhabitants.In January 1463, de Brézé and the Scottish earl of Angus led a mainly Scots force that surprised Warwick as he besieged the Lancastrian garrison in Alnwick Castle. Perhaps unwilling to give battle because of the low morale of his troops,Warwick allowed the garrison to withdraw into Scotland with de Brézé’s army. In June, de Brézé returned to England as part of a Scottish invasion force that included not only Henry VI and Queen Margaret, but also JAMES III of Scotland and his mother MARY OF GUELDRES. The invaders besieged Norham Castle until surprised by a Yorkist force under Warwick and his brother John NEVILLE, Lord Montagu. The Scots army disintegrated in panic, and de Brézé, Margaret, and Prince Edward escaped to Berwick, while Henry VI fled into Scotland. In early August, de Brézé accompanied Margaret and the prince to FRANCE. Restored to his offices in 1464, de Brézé was killed while leading Louis XI’s forces against the Burgundians at the Battle of Montlhéry in July 1465.Further Reading: Haigh, Philip A., The Military Campaigns of the Wars of the Roses (Stroud, Gloucestershire, UK: Sutton Publishing, 1995); Kendall, Paul Murray, Louis XI (New York:W.W. Norton, 1971);Vale,M.G.A., Charles VII (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1974).
Encyclopedia of the Wars of the Roses. John A.Wagner. 2001.
Look at other dictionaries:
Brézé, Pierre II de — ▪ French soldier and statesman Brézé also spelled Breszé born 1410? died July 16, 1465, Montlhéry, France trusted soldier and statesman of Charles VII of France. Brézé made his name in the Hundred Years War when in 1433 he joined… … Universalium
Normandy, Seneschal of — see Brézé, Pierre de, Seneschal of Normandy … Encyclopedia of the Wars of the Roses
Pierre de Brézé — (or de Brezé) (born c.1410; died 16 July 1465 in the battle of Montlhéry, France) was a French soldier and politician in the service of King Charles VII. He had made his name in the English wars when in 1433 he joined with Yolande, queen of… … Wikipedia
Brézé (surname) — Brézé was the name of a noble Angevin family, the most famous member of which was Pierre de Brézé (c. 1410 1465), one of the trusted soldiers and statesmen of Charles VII. He was succeeded as seneschal of Normandy by his eldest son Jacques de… … Wikipedia
Philip De Carteret, 6th of St Ouen — Philip De Carteret, Seigneur of St Ouen, born circa 1402, son of Philip.During the Wars of the Roses, Queen Margaret, the wife of Henry VI, made an agreement with Pierre de Brézé, Comte de Maulevrier, the seneschal of Normandy, to raise an army,… … Wikipedia