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  • Writer's pictureGeorge Castrioti

August 26th, 1346 - The Battle of Crecy

Conflict: Hundred Years' War

Combatants: English v. French

Location: France

Outcome: English victory

A naval victory in the English Channel allowed King Edward III to land 10,000 soldiers in northern France in July of 1346. French King Phillip fielded an army of 12,000 soldiers, including 4,000 Genoese crossbowmen, and met the English force at Crecy. Edward positioned his infantry defensively, taking care to defend his longbowmen. On August 26th, Phillip ordered a reconnaissance in force of the English positions, but his troops inadvertently engaged in battle. The mercenary crossbowmen were perforated by the adept English longbowmen and fled to the rear. Phillip attempted a cavalry charge in response, but his horsemen, too, were cut down by arrows. By nightfall, one third of the French army was destroyed while Edward had lost less than 100 men.

Battle of Crecy by Jean Froissart

Points of Interest:

  • The English longbowman were able to load and release six times faster than the mercenary crossbowmen.

  • The breaking of the French army allowed Edward to turn his army to Calais unopposed.

Edward III of England by an unknown artist

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