House of Valois was a royal house of France, a cadet branch of the Capetian dynasty which succeeded the House of Capet as kings of France. The House of Valois ruled France from 1328 until 1589. The House of Valois unexpectedly came into power upon the death of Philip IV and of his three sons (Louis, Philip and Charles) who had each become king but in turn died without any male heirs. When the youngest, Charles IV, died in 1328 the French succession was thrown wide open. There were 3 reasonable choices:
1. Philip, Count of Valois, son of Charles of Valois. Philip was the grandson of Philip III and nephew of Philip IV. He was the closest heir in the male line.
2. Philip, Count of Evreux - another nephew of Philip IV
3. Edward III of England, son of Isabella of France (daughter of Philip IV). Edward claimed to be the heir as a male descendant of Philip IV.
Isabella claimed the thrown on behalf of her son but the French rejected her claims and thus chose Philip of Valois, who became Philip VI of France. If Edward III would have had to back his claims with force if he was to claim the throne of France. Instead of paying homage to the French king, Edward claimed that he was the rightful King of France - which was a key reason for the Hundred Years War between France and England.
House of Valois