At the battle of Agincourt, the English were vastly outnumbered by the French, were far from home with extended supply lines, suffering from illness and weather conditions, and worn out, yet the English under Henry V won a decisive victory. How was this possible against a numerically superior French foe fighting on their own soil?
There were several reasons why the English were able to prevail in the battle of Agincourt. The French leader King Charles IV was not a strong leader. He was a weak and incompetent leader. Henry on the other hand was a fearless leader. The use of the longbow was instrumental in the English victory and the strategic maneuvers of the English army enabled them to push the French army into a corner.
King Charles IV was not a forceful ruler and was not able to efficiently lead his army to victory. The French army outnumbered the English army, but this did not guarantee a victory for them. King Henry V was a fearless leader and was able to show his army that he was willing to die along with them. Henry V "dressed in complete armor except his headgear, because he wanted his face to be seen by his men" (Henry V). His appearance greatly encouraged his army. The night before the attack Henry was faced with an army that was tired, sick, and had low morale. He "ordered complete silence through the camp in order to give his soldiers the ability to rest." (Henry V). This order of silence made the French think that the English army had retreated. The French began to celebrate but they soon realized they were wrong.
The longbow was a great contributor to the English success in the battle of Agincourt. This enabled the archers to " rain approximately 10 arrows per minute per man down upon the enemy" (Henry V). The English army had "6000 soldiers and out of that 5000 soldiers were longbow men" (http://www.longbow-archers.com). This allowed for greater impact before and during hand to hand combat. The longbow was such an important part of the...
Cited: Patrick Civilization in the West: Volume I: Since 1715, Sixth Edition, Kishlansky, Mark. Geary, O 'Brien, Patricia.
The battle of Agincourt, 25 October 1415: 2002, Bennett. M, copyright longbow-archers, 2002 http://www.longbow-archers.com/historyagincourt.htm
Henry V – History, Literature, and Myth: http://athena.english.vt.edu/~thompson/henryv.html
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