The revolt - part three

The rebellion founders and ends in defeat, casting Wales into lengthy economic, social and political diaster.

Six years after the rebellion had started, and after huge successes, the balance of power began to shift away from Owain Glyndwr.

The French involvement ebbed away, and even a politically-astute promise by Owain to the Avignon-based papacy to shift Wales' allegiance in the Catholic schism to the French side didn't work.

Battles didn't go Glyndwr's way, with his own son, Gruffudd, being captured. King Henry had 300 prisoners beheaded in Usk, and ever-more violent treatment of the captured become the norm.

King Henry's excessive violence on its own hadn't worked, but in partnership with his son's scheme of an economic blockade, it began to pay dividends.

English forces landed in Anglesey from Ireland at the start of the year and gradually pushed their way across the island during 1406. Combining this with the securing of some of Wales' coastal strongholds, the English began to put a strangle-hold on the supply of arms and trade to Glyndwr's vestigial state.

Gradually, communities felt the pinch had began to fall over the next two years. Lordships surrendered one by one, and Glyndwr's castle at Aberystwyth came under siege. It fell, followed by Harlech in 1409.

The French and Scottish were approached in last-ditch requests for assistance, but no help was forthcoming. In 1409, his own wife, two daughters and three granddaughters were captured and sent to the Tower.

Owain, perhaps desperate and looking for a glorious defeat to end his revolt, led a last-gasp sortie with his remaining, most-trusted soldiers. The raid into Shropshire was a defeat, and many of Glyndwr's highest commanders were captured and executed.


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