History

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The Battle of Agincourt that took place on the 25th of October 1415 is a fascinating but controversial battle. As we commemorate the 600th anniversary of the battle, we will help you explore some of its facts, secrets and myths.  Over the anniversary year we will be posting questions and answering them in our blog.

 

Getting involved

If you would like to get involved, please do send us your questions and we will try our best to answer them and to post replies here for everyone to read. Please contact us through the links at the bottom of the page, follow us on Facebook and Twitter and read our weekly blog.

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A few articles to whet your appetite:

Were there gunners in the English army?

By Dan Spencer Gunners are first recorded in English service in 1346 during the reign of Edward III. This coincides with the earliest use of guns by the English at the battle of Crecy (26 August 1346) and the siege of Calais (4 September 1346-3 August 1347). However these professionals were only employed in small numbers prior to the reign of Henry V. Twenty-six master gunners were recruited for the 1415 expedition in addition to a further fifty-two assistant gunners. They were used to operate and maintain the king’s guns...
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Was the V-sign invented at the battle of Agincourt?

By Professor Anne Curry In a nutshell, no! This idea is a twentieth-century myth although so far it has proved impossible to find where and when a link to Agincourt was first suggested. The myth is that the French had threatened to cut off the index and middle fingers of any archers they captured. But since the English won, the archers then stuck up these two fingers to show they still had them. Two fifteenth-century narratives mention mutilation. In a chronicle written by Thomas Walsingham, a monk of St Albans,...
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Did Henry V Fear the Scots?

By Stephen Cooper The ruins of Berwick CastleThroughout the Hundred Years War (1337-1453) the Scots were allied with the French in the ‘Auld Alliance’ and this stimulated the creation of the Marches on either side of the Border, militarised zones where warfare between English and Scots was endemic. Richard II and Henry IV invaded Scotland in force and their armies reached Edinburgh, and on the other hand the Scots burnt Berwick on Tweed in 1405; but more typical was the constant raiding conducted by Border forces on each side. Shakespeare...
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How was the army fed?

By Dan Spencer WinchesterCathedralHenry V needed to assemble a large army and fleet for his invasion of France in 1415. However feeding the thousands of soldiers and sailors for the expedition was a major undertaking. The south coast of England, particularly Southampton and the surrounding region, was the mustering point for the English army. This is likely to have placed enormous demands on the resources of the area to provide for thousands of soldiers, but royal records give us important insights into how food supplies were ensured. On 27 May...
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