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But when the blast of war blows in our ears,
Let it pry through the portage of the head,
O'erhang and jutty his confounded base,
Now set the teeth, and stretch the nostril wide;
Have, in these parts, from morn till even fought,
Be copy now to men of grosser blood,
And teach them how to war!-and you, good yeomen,
That you are worth your breeding, which I doubt not;
Harfleur was taken and sacked; but as his army was much reduced by sickness, the king did not enter farther into the country, but directed his march towards Calais, then an English possession. When he reached the river Somme the fordable points were guarded by a large army watching his movements, but he succeeded in crossing, and found himself in presence of a hostile force about ten times more numerous than his own. Not far from them lay the famous field of Cressy. Henry chose his ground near the
castle of Agincourt (1415). The two armies passed the night in the field, and next morning after mass had been chanted, Henry ordered his renowned English archers to the front. Westmoreland is represented by Shakspere as contemplating the small number of the English with alarm, and saying :—
O that we now had here
But one ten thousand of those men in England,
That do no work to-day!
To which Henry replies :
No, my fair cousin :
If we are marked to die, we are enough
I would not lose so great an honour,
Then will he strip his sleeve, and show his scars,
But he'll remember with advantages,
What feats he did that day. Then shall our names,
Harry the king, Bedford, and Exeter,
Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloster,
Be in their flowing cups freshly remember'd.
And gentlemen in England, now a-bed,
Shall think themselves accursed, they were not here;
The French were commanded by the Constable d'Albret. Unfortunately for them they were so cased in heavy armour,1 and the ground they occupied was so marshy, that when the English archers discharged their arrows, confusion at once set in, and the leaders were unable to restore order. Terrible slaughter followed. The French left on the field 10,000 killed, amongst whom were the Constable and six princes of the blood. The King of France's nephew, Charles duke of Orleans, after performing prodigies of valour, was made prisoner along with several other princes. The English lost about 1600. Henry's cousin, the Duke of York, was amongst the slain.2 Immediately after this great victory, Henry returned to England to raise supplies, and to receive the congratulations of his subjects (1415). Parliament was so highly gratified with his successes, that they granted him a subsidy for life on wool, and voted large sums for the further prosecution of the war.
In 1418, Isabella, queen of France, having joined the Burgundian faction, this party got the government into their hands, and a horrible massacre of the Armagnacs or aristocratic party took place
1 In accordance with former usages of war, they expected hand-to-hand encounters, and were not prepared for the deadly discharge of English arrows. Against this weapon of war their armour was no defence, but rather an incumbrance, as it prevented rapid evolutions. 2 The son of the Earl of Cambridge succeeded to the title.
HENRY V. DIES AT VINCENNES.
in Paris. The dauphin, a youth of sixteen, was identified with the latter party. It was when France was in this disastrous state that Henry landed a second time in Normandy, laid waste the country, and besieged Rouen, which, after a heroic defence, capitulated. Both Burgundians and Armagnacs bade high for his favour. Nothing but the Crown would satisfy Henry, and accordingly negotiations for union between the two factions were set on foot. The leaders, John duke of Burgundy, and the dauphin, son of Charles VI., agreed to hold a conference upon the bridge of Montereau. No sooner did the Duke of Burgundy appear, than he was assaulted and murdered by Taneguy du Chatel, one of the retinue of the dauphin. After this act, Philip, son of the murdered duke and Isabella the queen, thought only of vengeance; and by the treaty of Troyes (1420) it was agreed that Henry should, upon his marrying Catherine, daughter of Charles VI., be declared Regent of France and heir to the throne, and that he should join the Duke of Burgundy in making war against the dauphin. This treaty, so disgraceful to France, was ratified by the states of the realm; and Henry returned to England with his French queen.
When the Scotch heard that Henry was to be king of the united kingdoms of France and England, they foresaw that their own independence would thereby be endangered, and sent an army of 7000 men, under the Earl of Buchan, to aid the dauphin in recovering his right. At the battle of Beaugé in Anjou, Henry's brother, the Duke of Clarence, was defeated and killed by this Scotch contingent, and Buchan was created Constable by the dauphin. On this news Henry hastened to France. Victory again followed him, and he quickly drove the dauphin south of the Loire.
In 1421 his queen gave birth to a son; but, in the midst of all his good fortune, death overtook him. He died at Vincennes, near Paris, in 1422, aged only thirty-four, having previously appointed his brother, the Duke of Bedford, Regent of France; a second brother, the Duke of Gloucester, Regent of England; and having intrusted his son, an infant of nine months old, to the charge of the Earl
of Warwick. His body was brought over to England and buried with great state in Westminster Abbey. Henry was much regretted by his subjects. Parliament had never cause to complain of his encroachments, and through the undisturbed exercise of its privileges it grew in strength.
lished a permanent navy.
paved and lighted.1
He was the first sovereign who estab-
(otemporary Sovereigns.-France: Charles VI. Scotland: James I.
Questions.-1. What was the nature of Henry the Fifth's claim to the throne of France (see p. 56)? 2. What great victory did Henry gain in 1415? 3. How many campaigns did Henry make in France; and what led to the third? 5. How were Henry's views in reference to France promoted by the state of parties there?
In connexion with this and the following reigns the pupil should be directed to Shakspere's dramas.