Cesare made Cesena his headquarters, and with an army consisting of 300 French lances, 4000 Gascons and Swiss, besides Italian troops, he attacked Imola, which surrendered at once, and then besieged Forll, held by Caterina Sforza, the widow of Girolamo Riario.
He subdued the Gascons, and defended Narbonne against the infidels.
But between 1248 and 1252 Henry alienated Montfort from his cause by taking the side of the Gascons, whom the earl had provoked to rebellion through his rigorous administration of their duchy.
Then in 1395 he went to take up the government of his duchy; thanks chiefly to his lavish expenditure his administration was not unsuccessful, but the Gascons had from the first objected to government except by the crown, and secured his recall within less than a year.
The Gascons were practically a separate nationality, and the house of Capet had no ancient connection with them.
Fortunately for the duke of Guienne the majority of his subjects had no desire to become Frenchmen; the Gascons felt no national sympathy with their neighbors of the north, and the towns in especial were linked to England by close ties of commerce, and had no wish whatever to break off their allegiance to the house of Plantagenet.
The Basques and Gascons, who occupied the southern slope of the western Pyrenees and part of the shore of the Bay of Biscay.