chapter  1
Introduction
Pages 13

The peculiarly Lancastrian aspects of early fifteenth-century political culture, both in England and on the Continent, and how they shaped Henry VI's reign as king of England and France are the subject of the introductory chapters of this book. It provides a context to explain the actions of Henry VI and contemporary reactions to his idiosyncratic style of rule. The chapter reinterprets Henry's life and reign within Lancastrian context. The identity, which have labelled as 'Lancastrianism', was both political and cultural and it operated at both the national and international levels. Among the records of the king's chancery, exchequer, and other departments of government literally hundreds of documents to which Henry VI either set his personal seal or applied the royal 'RH' monogram. McFarlane's legacy directly influenced three most influential modern accounts of Henry VI's reign. McFarlane's image of Henry VI is most clearly visible in John Watts's Henry VI and the Politics of Kingship, published in 1996.