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Daily Double: Agincourt

October 24th, 2009 Headsman

No medieval* battle in Christendom is better-known to the present-day hoi polloi than the Battle of Agincourt, that signal upset victory when young King Henry V and his invading English yeoman archers stunned a seemingly unbeatable force of French knights by outsmarting them like Belichik versus Martz.

This battle’s interpretive palimpsest — is it a parable of nascent capitalism? of national character? of technology? — has been much-bandied in the centuries since (and must weigh against England’s subsequent reversals in the Hundred Years’ War). This site’s interest is more parochial: the presence among the casualties of those who died by execution.

* If you want to call the early 15th century “medieval.” We stake no periodization claim.

On this day..

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6 thoughts on “Daily Double: Agincourt”

  1. James (Jim) DeCamp says:

    The French prisoners were “executed” out of tactical necessity. They would have brought a handsome ransom. The English were outnumbered, and the issue was still doubt, with hundreds of French prisoners in the rear, and arms discarded by prisoners and the fallen lying about, Henry could not take the chance of an attack by escaping prisoners.

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