Synopses & Reviews
Immortalized in the plays of Shakespeare, Henry V is the most famous and celebrated of all England's medieval monarchs. His succession of victories over the French, combined with his death at an early age, has created an aura of myth around the man and commander that has endured to this day.
Although his most famous battles and conquests took place in France, Henry, as was common amongst medieval aristocracy, was introduced to battle at an early age when he fought with his father, Henry IV, at the battle of Shrewsbury in 1403, where the 16-year-old prince was seriously wounded by an arrow. He later took part in the campaigns to subdue the revolt in his principality led by Owain Glyndur, in a guerrilla campaign that went on for a decade.
Upon his accession to the throne, Henry turned his attention towards foreign affairs and the English position in France. Having failed to obtain his wishes through negotiation, he undertook a major invasion in 1415, starting with the siege of Harfleur and culminating in the climactic battle of Agincourt. This was followed by further campaigns in Normandy in 1417-19, which resulted in the Treaty of Troyes that made Henry heir and regent of France, and 1421-22 where he died aged 35 following the siege of Meaux, probably of dysentery.
This title examines Henry's key battles and sieges, how he systematically extended English control throughout northern France and how he was perceived by his contemporaries as a military leader. It also deals with his controversial military decisions, such as the slaughter of the French prisoners at Agincourt.
Marcus Cowper was born in London, UK, and studied medieval history at the universities of Manchester and Birmingham. Having worked for Osprey Publishing as an editor, since 2002 he has been the co-owner of Ilios Publishing, specializing in military history publishing. He is the author of a number of titles, including Fortress 55: Cathar Castles: Fortresses of the Albigensian Crusade 1209-1300, and lives and works in Oxford, UK.