“Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more;
Or close the wall up with our English dead!
In peace there’s nothing so becomes a man
As modest stillness and humility:
But when the blast of war blows in our ears,
Then imitate the action of the tiger;
Stiffen the sinews, summon up the blood,
Disguise fair nature with hard-favoured rage;
Then lend the eye a terrible aspect.”
William Shakespeare – ‘Henry V.’
The story is the battle of Azincourt, which happened in 1415, 602 years ago.
The day we were there not much action could be seen. No action we think is a good thing. Back to the main event. There is a very sketchy recorded history of this occasion, maybe the reason for this could be that many of the people who were capable of recording the facts were killed on the battlefield.
The battle [plus a few others] was at the end of the 100-year war, which involved England plus part of France that was ruled by England and France. Azincourt is one battle that the French would rather forget about, as they were mainly slaughtered by the Englishmen who lost approx. 600 men and the French lost approx 10,000 men in that battle. Of course, there was no doubt many battles that have occurred over the years though not many are remembered with a museum in a small village in the countryside in Pas de Calais. Unfortunately, the museum wasn’t opened when we went to visit, we are hoping it will be open by the time we leave here at the end of March.
The only monument [below image] on the battlefield is one to look medieval, which was erected in 1991. In previous years there have been other monuments, all have succumbed to being the victims of wars and revolutions during the past 602 years. Below photo is a closeup of the inscription on the monument.
Photographs below are of Azincourt village
Recommended reading: Agincourt: Henry V and the Battle That Made England
N.B. My post is to let people know about this fascinating place and is only a shallow dip into history with an emphasis on photography, rather than the beginning of a thesis for a PhD.