This biography stresses the personal rather than the constitutional aspects of Simon de Montfort's career but it also illustrates the importance of his position in both England and France. Simon arrived penniless in England, but succeeded in claiming the Earldom of Leicester from Henry III, was showered with honours and wedded to the King's sister Eleanor. However, gradual estrangement between Simon and the king led to open hositility, the Barons' War and the fateful battles at Lewes and Evesham. This dramatic story portrays a French adventurer defending English liberties, but Professor Labarge suggests that much of what de Montfort achieved for Parliament was due to accident rather than conscious design.
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