Battle of Agincourt: Facts and Information

Here are some facts about the Battle of Agincourt.

  • The Battle of the Agincourt took place on October 25th, 1415 between the English and the French. It was one of the most important conflicts of the Hundred Years War.

  • The Hundred Years War is the name given to a series of battles for the French throne between England and France. The war lasted a little over 100 years, from 1337 to 1453.
  • Two months before the battle, Henry V marched to Normandy in northern France and attacked the town of Harfleur. Before he could return to England, the French attacked him near Agincourt.
  • The English, under King Henry V, had about 8,000 knights, archers and soldiers. The French outnumbered the English and may have had up to 36,000 men.
  • The English army had eaten very little, had just marched about 350 km and many were unwell. Many of troops were ordinary men, and not trained soldiers.
  • At the Battle of the Agincourt, knights wore thick steel plated armour and had their coat of arms on their shield. Other weapons were the two-handed sword, lance, and bow and arrow.

Battle of Agincourt

  • Most of the English troops (about 80%) were archers armed with English longbows.
  • The English army managed to secure a position flanked by forest on both sides. This meant that a French cavalry charge would be easier to defend and the English archers would have more time to operate.
  • The French were weighed down by their heavy armour and their cavalry was slowed down by the heavy clay soil of the battlefield. The English defended their troops by using pointed stakes hammered into the ground.
  • After a French cavalry charge failed – mainly due to volleys of arrows fired from the English longbows – the French foot soldiers surged towards the English position. Although the English were pushed back by the large French army, the sheer number of troops actually hindered the French. They were so closely packed together that there wasn’t space to use their weapons properly.
  • The English army won the battle. It is estimated that 6,000 French soldiers were killed, and one third of the French nobility was either killed or captured.
  • The Battle of Agincourt is considered one England’s great military victories.
  • William Shakespeare‘s play, Henry V, mentions the battle a great deal. The play is one of his most well known, and has been made into several films, all depicting the battle.
  • During the battle, Piers Legge, an English knight lay wounded on the ground while his mastiff dog fought off the French. The dog survived and is said to have led to the English mastiff breed.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.