Sunday, August 26, 2007

Today In History: A storm of arrows.

On this date in 1346, the French nobility decided that charging uphill through the mud at English longbowmen would be a swell idea.

They got their crepes folded for their efforts.

Apparently slow learners, they tried the exact same thing again some sixty-nine years later with (no surprise) the exact same outcome.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

I can recommend, very highly indeed,for those that find such things interesting the book "Agincourt *The King * The Campaign * The Battle *" by Juliet Barker.

Not only does it describe, in detail, the battle with very good coverage of not only eyewitness accounts on *both* sides, but also much intelligent (i.e. SWAGs by professionals) speculation on the murkier aspects.

But, as the title implies, it goes into very useful context as to who Henry was as a person, the nature of high medieval warfare, all the drammatis personae of consequence, and the *decades* of logistical preparation that went into allowing a middling late medieval power: England, to take on the 800lb gorrila of late middle ages states: the Kingdom of France.
Also lots of information on French internal politics (And remeber this is the middle ages, all politics is personal)... not quite the uniform state of today.


Anyway, a well done book, nicely footnoted, and a nice read.

Tam said...

I'll need to look into that. Like most folks, the most in-depth account I've read has been Keegan's from Face of Battle, although I also have the Osprey Campaign volume on the battle which is nicely detailed.

GeorgeH said...

Actually 3 times.
They tried the same thing at Poitiers in 1356.

http://tinyurl.com/ywqn4x

Anonymous said...

Know why the French eat snails and other things that no sane human, unless on the edge of starvation, would eat? Because the French were constantly on the edge of starvation (many lost the battle) during the Little Ice Age because they refused to adapt and implement more modern farming practices that other nations were using.


Slow learners indeed.

Tam said...

I dunno... I loves me some lobster and crab, and the first person who ate one of those was one hungry sumbitch.

Anonymous said...

Same with mudbugs. You just don't pull any of them out of the water for the first time and say "I bet that's one tasty son of a gun".

Cybrludite said...

Not as hungry as the first guy to eat an oyster. And I think we can all agree that it was a guy. "Hey, Thag! Me bet five bunny pelts you won't eat glob of snot cracked out of that funny looking flat rock Thog pulled out of marsh!"

Joseph said...

Hmmm...and both the British and French did pretty much the same thing in 1914-18, charging (slogging) through mud into heavy fire...

Feanaro said...

And somehow the English STILL managed to lose France. Goes to show that the battle is not the war.