House of York
The House of York was a cadet branch of the English royal House of Plantagenet. Three of its members became kings of England in the late 15th century; the House of York was descended in the male line from Edmund of Langley, 1st Duke of York, the fourth surviving son of Edward III, but represented Edward's senior line, being cognatic descendants of Lionel, Duke of Clarence, Edward III's second surviving son. It is based on these descents. Compared with the House of Lancaster, it had a senior claim to the throne of England according to cognatic primogeniture but junior claim according to the agnatic primogeniture; the reign of this dynasty ended with the death of Richard III of England at the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485. It became extinct in the male line with the death of Edward Plantagenet, 17th Earl of Warwick, in 1499. Edmund of Langley, 1st Duke of York, 1st Earl of Cambridge, KG was a younger son of King Edward III of England and Philippa of Hainault, the fourth of their five sons who lived to adulthood.
He was the founder of the House of York, but it was through the marriage of his younger son, Richard to Anne Mortimer that the Yorkist faction in the Wars of the Roses made its claim on the throne. The other party in the Wars of the Roses, the Lancasters, were descendants of Edmund's elder brother, John of Gaunt whose son Henry usurped the throne of Richard II in 1399. Edmund had two sons and Richard of Conisburgh. Edward succeeded to the dukedom in 1402, but was killed at the battle of Agincourt in 1415, with no issue. Richard married Anne Mortimer, a great-granddaughter of Lionel of Antwerp, the second surviving son of Edward III. Furthermore, Anne's son Richard became heir general to the earldom of March, after her only brother, Edmund, 5th Earl, died without issue in 1425, their father Roger Mortimer, 4th Earl of March had been named heir presumptive of Richard II before Henry IV's accession. Richard of Conisburgh was executed following his involvement in the Southampton Plot to depose Henry V of England in favour of the Earl of March.
The dukedom of York therefore passed to Richard Plantagenet. Through his mother, Richard Plantagenet inherited the lands of the earldom of March, as well as the Mortimer claim to the throne. Despite his elevated status, Richard Plantagenet was denied a position in government by the advisers of the weak Henry VI John Beaufort, 1st Duke of Somerset, the queen consort, Margaret of Anjou. Although he served as Protector of the Realm during Henry VI's period of incapacity in 1453–54, his reforms were reversed by Somerset's party once the king had recovered; the Wars of the Roses began the following year, with the First Battle of St Albans. Richard aimed only to purge his Lancastrian political opponents from positions of influence over the king, it was not until October 1460. In that year the Yorkists had captured the king at the battle of Northampton, but victory was short-lived. Richard and his second son Edmund were killed at the battle of Wakefield on 30 December. Richard's claim to the throne was inherited by his son Edward.
With the support of Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick, Edward showing great promise as a leader of men, defeated the Lancastrians in a succession of battles. While Henry VI and Margaret of Anjou were campaigning in the north, Warwick gained control of the capital and had Edward declared king in London in 1461. Edward strengthened his claim with a decisive victory at the Battle of Towton in the same year, in the course of which the Lancastrian army was wiped out; the early reign of Edward IV was marred by Lancastrian plotting and uprisings in favour of Henry VI. Warwick himself changed sides, supported Margaret of Anjou and the king's jealous brother George, Duke of Clarence, in restoring Henry in 1470–71. However, Edward regained his throne, the House of Lancaster was wiped out with the death of Henry VI himself, in the Tower of London in 1471. In 1478, the continued trouble caused by Clarence led to his execution in the Tower of London. On Edward's death in 1483, the crown passed to his twelve-year-old son Edward.
Edward IV's younger brother Richard, Duke of Gloucester, was appointed Protector, escorted the young king, his brother Richard, to the Tower of London. The famous Princes in the Tower were never seen again; however it is unknown who might have killed them. Parliament declared, in the document Titulus Regius, that the two boys were illegitimate, on the grounds that Edward IV's marriage was invalid, as such Richard was heir to the throne, he was crowned Richard III in July 1483. Richard III had many enemies. Though the House of Lancaster had been extinguished, the Lancastrian sympathisers survived, who now rallied behind Henry Tudor, a descendant of the Beauforts, a legitimized branch of the House of Lancaster. Moreover, the family of Edward IV, the Edwardian loyalists, were opposed to him dividing his Yorkist power base. A coup attempt failed in late 1483, but in 1485 Richard met Henry Tudor at the battle of Bosworth Field. During the battle, some of Richard's important supporters switched sides or withheld their retainers from the field.
Richard himself was killed. He was the last of the Plantagenet kings, as well as the last English king. Henry Tudor declared himself king, took Elizabeth of York, eldest child of Edward IV, as his wife, symbolically uniting the surviving houses of York and Lancaster, acceded t
Henry VI of England
Henry VI was King of England from 1422 to 1461 and again from 1470 to 1471, disputed King of France from 1422 to 1453. The only child of Henry V, he succeeded to the English throne at the age of nine months upon his father's death, succeeded to the French throne on the death of his maternal grandfather Charles VI shortly afterwards. Henry inherited the long-running Hundred Years' War, in which his uncle Charles VII contested his claim to the French throne, he is the only English monarch to have been crowned King of France, in 1431. His early reign, when several people were ruling for him, saw the pinnacle of English power in France, but subsequent military and economic problems had endangered the English cause by the time Henry was declared fit to rule in 1437, he found his realm in a difficult position, faced with setbacks in France and divisions among the nobility at home. Unlike his father, Henry is described as timid, passive, well-intentioned, averse to warfare and violence, his ineffective reign saw the gradual loss of the English lands in France.
In the hope of achieving peace, in 1445 Henry married Charles VII's niece, the ambitious and strong-willed Margaret of Anjou. The peace policy failed, leading to the murder of one of Henry's key advisers, the war recommenced, with France taking the upper hand; as the situation in France worsened, there was a related increase in political instability in England. With Henry unfit to rule, power was exercised by quarrelsome nobles, while factions and favourites encouraged the rise of disorder in the country. Regional magnates and soldiers returning from France formed and maintained increasing numbers of private armed retainers, with which they fought one another, terrorised their neighbors, paralysed the courts, dominated the government. Queen Margaret did not remain unpartisan, took advantage of the situation to make herself an effective power behind the throne. Amidst military disasters in France and a collapse of law and order in England, the queen and her clique came under criticism, coming from Henry VI's popular cousin Richard of the House of York, of misconduct of the war in France and misrule of the country.
Starting in 1453, Henry began suffering a series of mental breakdowns, tensions mounted between Margaret and Richard of York over control of the incapacitated king's government, over the question of succession to the throne. Civil war broke out in 1455, leading to a long period of dynastic conflict known as the Wars of the Roses. Henry was deposed on 29 March 1461 after a crushing defeat at the Battle of Towton by Richard's son, who took the throne as Edward IV. Despite Margaret continuing to lead a resistance to Edward, he was captured by Edward's forces in 1465 and imprisoned in the Tower of London. Henry was restored to the throne in 1470, but Edward retook power in 1471, killing Henry's only son and heir in battle and imprisoning Henry once again. Having "lost his wits, his two kingdoms, his only son", Henry died in the Tower during the night of 21 May killed on the orders of Edward. Miracles were attributed to Henry after his death, he was informally regarded as a saint and martyr until the 16th century.
He left a legacy of educational institutions, having founded Eton College, King's College and All Souls College, Oxford. Shakespeare wrote a trilogy of plays about his life, depicting him as weak-willed and influenced by his wife, Margaret. Henry was the only child and heir of King Henry V, he was born on 6 December 1421 at Windsor Castle. He succeeded to the throne as King of England at the age of nine months on 1 September 1422, the day after his father's death. A few weeks on 21 October 1422 in accordance with the Treaty of Troyes of 1420, he became titular King of France upon his grandfather Charles VI's death, his mother, Catherine of Valois, was 20 years old. As Charles VI's daughter, she was viewed with considerable suspicion by English nobles and was prevented from playing a full role in her son's upbringing. On 28 September 1423, the nobles swore loyalty to Henry VI, not yet two years old, they summoned Parliament in the King's name and established a regency council to govern until the King should come of age.
One of Henry V's surviving brothers, Duke of Bedford, was appointed senior regent of the realm and was in charge of the ongoing war in France. During Bedford's absence, the government of England was headed by Henry V's other surviving brother, Duke of Gloucester, appointed Lord Protector and Defender of the Realm, his duties were limited to summoning Parliament. Henry V's half-uncle Henry Beaufort, Bishop of Winchester, had an important place on the Council. After the Duke of Bedford died in 1435, the Duke of Gloucester claimed the Regency himself, but was contested in this by the other members of the Council. From 1428, Henry's tutor was Richard de Beauchamp, Earl of Warwick, whose father had been instrumental in the opposition to Richard II's reign. Henry's half-brothers and Jasper, the sons of his widowed mother and Owen Tudor, were given earldoms. Edmund Tudor was the father of Henry Tudor, who became Henry VII. In reaction to Charles VII's coronation as French King in Reims Cathedral on 17 July 1429, Henry was soon crowned King of England at Westminster Abbey on 6 November 1429, followed by his own coronation as King of France at Notre Dame de Paris on 16 December 1431, at age 10.
He was the only English king to be crow
Brutus of Troy
Brutus, or Brute of Troy, is a legendary descendant of the Trojan hero Aeneas, known in medieval British history as the eponymous founder and first king of Britain. This legend first appears in the Historia Brittonum, an anonymous 9th-century historical compilation to which commentary was added by Nennius, but is best known from the account given by the 12th-century chronicler Geoffrey of Monmouth in his Historia Regum Britanniae. Notwithstanding this, he is not mentioned in any classical text and cannot be considered to be historical; the Historia Britonum states that "The island of Britain derives its name from Brutus, a Roman consul" who conquered Spain. This is derived from Isidore of Seville's popular 7th-century work Etymologiae, in which it was speculated that Britain was named after the Roman general Decimus Junius Brutus Callaicus, who pacified Further Spain in 138 BC. A more detailed story, set before the foundation of Rome, follows, in which Brutus is the grandson or great grandson of Aeneas — a legend that blends Isidore's spurious etymology with the Christian, pseudo-historical, "Frankish Table of Nations" tradition that emerged in the early medieval European scholarly world and attempted to trace the peoples of the known world back to Biblical ancestors.
Following Roman sources such as Livy and Virgil, the Historia tells how Aeneas settled in Italy after the Trojan War, how his son Ascanius founded Alba Longa, one of the precursors of Rome. Ascanius married, his wife became pregnant. In a variant version, the father is Silvius, identified as either the second son of Aeneas mentioned in the Historia, or as the son of Ascanius. A magician, asked to predict the child's future, said it would be a boy and that he would be the bravest and most beloved in Italy. Enraged, Ascanius had the magician put to death; the mother died in childbirth. The boy, named Brutus accidentally killed his father with an arrow and was banished from Italy. After wandering among the islands of the Tyrrhenian Sea and through Gaul, where he founded the city of Tours, Brutus came to Britain, named it after himself, filled it with his descendants, his reign is synchronised to the time the High Priest Eli was judge in Israel, when the Ark of the Covenant was taken by the Philistines.
A variant version of the Historia Britonum makes Brutus the son of Ascanius's son Silvius, traces his genealogy back to Ham, son of Noah. Another chapter traces Brutus's genealogy differently, making him the great-grandson of the legendary Roman king Numa Pompilius, himself a son of Ascanius, tracing his descent from Noah's son Japheth; these Christianising traditions conflict with the classical Trojan genealogies, relating the Trojan royal family to Greek gods. Yet another Brutus, son of Hisicion, son of Alanus the first European traced back across many generations to Japheth, is referred to in the Historia Britonum; this Brutus's brothers were Francus and Romanus ancestors of significant European nations. Geoffrey of Monmouth's account tells much the same story, but in greater detail. In this version, Brutus is explicitly the grandson, rather than son, of Ascanius; the magician who predicts great things for the unborn Brutus foretells he will kill both his parents. He does so, in the same manner described in the Historia Britonum, is banished.
Travelling to Greece, he discovers a group of Trojans enslaved there. He becomes their leader, after a series of battles they defeat the Greek king Pandrasus by attacking his camp at night after capturing the guards, he takes him hostage and forces him to let his people go. He is given Pandrasus's daughter Ignoge in marriage, ships and provisions for the voyage, sets sail; the Trojans land on a deserted island and discover an abandoned temple to Diana. After performing the appropriate ritual, Brutus falls asleep in front of the goddess's statue and is given a vision of the land where he is destined to settle, an island in the western ocean inhabited only by a few giants. After some adventures in north Africa and a close encounter with the Sirens, Brutus discovers another group of exiled Trojans living on the shores of the Tyrrhenian Sea, led by the prodigious warrior Corineus. In Gaul, Corineus provokes a war with Goffarius Pictus, king of Aquitaine, after hunting in the king's forests without permission.
Brutus's nephew Turonus dies in the fighting, the city of Tours is founded where he is buried. The Trojans win most of their battles but are conscious that the Gauls have the advantage of numbers, so go back to their ships and sail for Britain called Albion, they land on "Totonesium litus"—"the sea-coast of Totnes". They meet the giant descendants of Albion and defeat them. Brutus renames the island after himself and becomes its first king. Corineus becomes ruler of Cornwall, named after him, they are harassed by the giants during a festival, but kill all of them but their leader, the largest giant Goemagot, saved for a wrestling match against Corineus. Corineus throws him over a cliff to his death. Brutus founds a city on the banks of the River Thames, which he calls Troia Nova, or New Troy; the name is in time corrupted to Trinovantum, the city is called London. He creates laws for his people and rules for twenty-four years. After his death he is buried in Trinovantum, the island is divided between his three sons: Locrinus and Kamber.
Early translations and adaptations of Geoffrey's Historia, such as Wace's Norman French Roman de Brut, Layamon's Middle English Brut, were named a
Collegiate Church of St Mary, Warwick
The Collegiate Church of St Mary is a Church of England parish church in the town of Warwick, England. It is in the centre of the town just east of the market place, it is a member of the Greater Churches Group. The church has the status of collegiate church. In governance and religious observance it was similar to a cathedral. There is a Bishop of Warwick, but this is an episcopal title used by a suffragan bishop of the Diocese of Coventry; the church foundations date back nearly nine hundred years, being created by Roger de Beaumont, 2nd Earl of Warwick, in 1123. In addition to founding the church, de Beaumont established the College of Dean and Canons at the church; the only surviving part of the Norman church which de Beaumont had built is the crypt. The chancel vestries and chapter house of the church were extensively rebuilt in the 14th century by a Earl of Warwick, Thomas de Beauchamp, in the Perpendicular Gothic style, his descendants built the Chapel of Our Lady known as the Beauchamp Chapel.
It contains the effigial monuments of Richard de Beauchamp, 13th Earl of Warwick, Ambrose Dudley, 3rd Earl of Warwick, Robert Dudley, 1st Earl of Leicester. Buried in the chancel of the church is William Parr, 1st Marquess of Northampton, the brother of Queen consort Catherine Parr; the college was dissolved in 1546, the church was granted by the crown to the burgesses of Warwick. The church, along with much of Warwick, was devastated by the Great Fire of Warwick in 1693; the nave and tower of the building were destroyed. In 1704, the rebuilt church was completed in a Gothic design by William Wilson. Sir Christopher Wren is said to have contributed to the design, but, disputed; the tower rises to the height of 130 feet. The design was described by John Summerson as being "as remarkable for its success as for its independence in style from other seventeenth-century English Gothic". There are one at the west end; the specifications of both organs can be found on the National Pipe Organ Register. Kevin Bowyer 1989 Christopher Monks 1998 Christopher Monks 1999 Luke Bond 2002 Ruaraidh Sutherland 2006 Mark Swinton 2011 "Colleges: St Mary, Warwick", A History of the County of Warwick,Volume 2, pp. 124–129.
Church website Warwick.co.uk
Netherlands Institute for Art History
The Netherlands Institute for Art History or RKD is located in The Hague and is home to the largest art history center in the world. The center specializes in documentation and books on Western art from the late Middle Ages until modern times. All of this is open to the public, much of it has been digitized and is available on their website; the main goal of the bureau is to collect and make art research available, most notably in the field of Dutch Masters. Via the available databases, the visitor can gain insight into archival evidence on the lives of many artists of past centuries; the library owns 450,000 titles, of which ca. 150,000 are auction catalogs. There are ca. 3,000 magazines, of which 600 are running subscriptions. Though most of the text is in Dutch, the standard record format includes a link to library entries and images of known works, which include English as well as Dutch titles; the RKD manages the Dutch version of the Art and Architecture Thesaurus, a thesaurus of terms for management of information on art and architecture.
The original version is an initiative of the Getty Research Institute in California. The collection was started through bequests by Frits Lugt, art historian and owner of a massive collection of drawings and prints, Cornelis Hofstede de Groot, a collector, art historian and museum curator, their bequest formed the basis for both the art collection and the library, now housed in the Koninklijke Bibliotheek. Though not all of the library's holdings have been digitised, much of its metadata is accessible online; the website itself is available in both an English user interface. In the artist database RKDartists, each artist is assigned a record number. To reference an artist page directly, use the code listed at the bottom of the record of the form: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/artists/ followed by the artist's record number. For example, the artist record number for Salvador Dalí is 19752, so his RKD artist page can be referenced. In the images database RKDimages, each artwork is assigned a record number.
To reference an artwork page directly, use the code listed at the bottom of the record of the form: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/ followed by the artwork's record number. For example, the artwork record number for The Night Watch is 3063, so its RKD artwork page can be referenced; the Art and Architecture Thesaurus assigns a record for each term, but these can not be referenced online by record number. Rather, they are used in the databases and the databases can be searched for terms. For example, the painting called "The Night Watch" is a militia painting, all records fitting this keyword can be seen by selecting this from the image screen; the thesaurus is a set of general terms, but the RKD contains a database for an alternate form of describing artworks, that today is filled with biblical references. This is the iconclass database. To see all images that depict Miriam's dance, the associated iconclass code 71E1232 can be used as a special search term. Official website Direct link to the databases The Dutch version of the Art and Architecture Thesaurus
Guy's Cliffe is a hamlet on the River Avon and the Coventry Road between Warwick and Leek Wootton in Warwickshire, near Old Milverton. It is in the civil parish of Guy's Cliffe; the secular version of the unit was, for a time, the least populous third-tier local authority in England. The name Guy's Cliffe originates from the name of the country house and estate that the land belonged to, which in turn was named after the cliff which the house itself was built on; the house has been in a ruined state since the late 20th century. Guy's Cliffe has been occupied since Saxon times and derives its name from the legendary Guy of Warwick. Guy is supposed to have retired to a hermitage on this site, this legend led to the founding of a chantry; the chantry was established in 1423 as the Chapel of St Mary Magdelene and the rock-carved stables and storehouses still remain. After the Dissolution of the Monasteries by Henry VIII the site passed into private hands; the current, ruined house dates from 1751 and was started by Samuel Greatheed, a West India merchant and Member of Parliament for Coventry 1747-1761.
Samuel Greatheed was one of the most prominent slave traders in the Caribbean and received the large sum of £25,000 in compensation from the government following the abolition of the slave trade. The estate comprised a mill, kitchen garden and land as far as Blacklow Hill. Blacklow Hill is north-west of the house, it is the site of an ancient settlement and the location of Piers Gaveston, 1st Earl of Cornwall's murder. In 1308 Edward II travelled to Boulogne to marry Isabella, leaving Piers Gaveston, a Gascon knight to act as regent. Resentment against Edward's rule and Gaveston's position of power grew, some barons began to insist Gaveston be banished. Edward could do little to prevent Gaveston being captured in 1312 under the orders of the Earl of Lancaster and his allies, he was captured first by the Earl of Warwick, whom he was seen to have offended, handed over to two Welshmen. They murdered him. In 1821 Bertie Greatheed erected a stone cross to mark the execution of Piers Gaveston, "Gaveston's Cross" and commented in his diary that he could read the inscription on the cross with his telescope from the house.
The house was used as a hospital during World War I and in World War II became a school for evacuated children. Guy's Cliffe estate was broken up and sold in 1947. In 1952 the mill became a pub and restaurant and was named The Saxon Mill, the stables became a riding school, the kitchen garden became a nursery, all of which still exist today. A toll house stood by the road to the north of the Saxon Mill, but this was demolished in the mid 20th century; the new owner of the house intended to convert it into a hotel, but these plans came to nothing and the house fell into disrepair. In 1955 the house was purchased by Aldwyn Porter and the chapel leased to the Freemasons, establishing a connection with the Masons that remains today; the roof had fallen in by 1966. In 1992 during the filming of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes a fire scene got out of control and damaged the building, leading to an insurance claim. English Heritage has given the building grade II listed status. One new house was built within the grounds, Guy's Cliffe House (note: the ruined house and by the 1980s, when the parishes merged, the population of the Parish of Guy's Cliffe was no more than 4 people.
The new boundary split the original estate: the stables and nursery are not within the current Parish of Leek Wootton & Guy's Cliffe, but the house and modern homes are. The chapel, used for Masonic ceremonies, has a large statue depicting Guy of Warwick. Piers Gaveston, the favourite of Edward II, sought refuge and was apprehended here before his execution on nearby Blacklow Hill at Leek Wootton. Saxon Mill on the River Avon, a former water powered mill, now a restaurant. Old Milverton Warwickshire Museum details for Guy's Cliffe House English Heritage: Heritage Gateway, architectural description of listed building A History of the County of Warwick Vol 8 pp434-447 British History OnlineSpecific Media related to Guy's Cliffe at Wikimedia Commons The GuysCliffeHouse.org.uk Photo Gallery Archive » A collection of historical and modern day photographs and depictions of Guys Cliffe House, England... Guys Cliffe House entry from The DiCamillo Companion to British & Irish Country Houses The Civil Parish of Leek Wootton and Guy's Cliffe Hubsite Leek Wootton & Guy's Cliffe Parish Council
Battle of Agincourt
The Battle of Agincourt was one of the greatest English victories in the Hundred Years' War. It took place on 25 October 1415 near Azincourt in northern France. England's unexpected victory against a numerically superior French army boosted English morale and prestige, crippled France, started a new period in the war during which the English began enjoying great military successes. After several decades of relative peace, the English had renewed their war effort in 1415 amid the failure of negotiations with the French. In the ensuing campaign, many soldiers died due to disease and the English numbers dwindled. Despite the disadvantage, the following battle ended in an overwhelming tactical victory for the English. King Henry V of England participated in hand-to-hand fighting. King Charles VI of France did not command the French army himself, as he suffered from severe psychotic illnesses with moderate mental incapacitation. Instead, the French were commanded by Constable Charles d'Albret and various prominent French noblemen of the Armagnac party.
This battle is notable for the use of the English longbow in large numbers, with the English and Welsh archers making up nearly 80 percent of Henry's army. Agincourt is one of England's most celebrated victories and was one of the most important English triumphs in the Hundred Years' War, along with the Battle of Crécy and Battle of Poitiers, it forms the centrepiece of the play Henry V by William Shakespeare. The Battle of Agincourt is well documented by at least seven contemporary accounts, three from eyewitnesses; the approximate location of the battle has never been in dispute and the place remains unaltered after 600 years. After the battle, Henry summoned the heralds of the two armies who had watched the battle together with principal French herald Montjoie, they settled on the name of the battle as Azincourt after the nearest fortified place. Two of the most cited accounts come from Burgundian sources, one from Jean Le Fèvre de Saint-Remy, present at the battle, the other from Enguerrand de Monstrelet.
The English eyewitness account comes from the anonymous Gesta Henrici Quinti, believed to be written by a chaplain in the King's household who would have been in the baggage train at the battle. A recent re-appraisal of Henry's strategy of the Agincourt campaign incorporates these three accounts and argues that war was seen as a legal due process for solving the disagreement over claims to the French throne. Henry V invaded France following the failure of negotiations with the French, he claimed the title of King of France through his great-grandfather Edward III, although in practice the English kings were prepared to renounce this claim if the French would acknowledge the English claim on Aquitaine and other French lands. He called a Great Council in the spring of 1414 to discuss going to war with France, but the lords insisted that he should negotiate further and moderate his claims. In the following negotiations Henry said that he would give up his claim to the French throne if the French would pay the 1.6 million crowns outstanding from the ransom of John II, concede English ownership of the lands of Normandy, Anjou and Flanders, as well as Aquitaine.
Henry would marry Catherine, the young daughter of Charles VI, receive a dowry of 2 million crowns. The French responded with what they considered the generous terms of marriage with Catherine, a dowry of 600,000 crowns, an enlarged Aquitaine. By 1415, negotiations had ground to a halt, with the English claiming that the French had mocked their claims and ridiculed Henry himself. In December 1414, the English parliament was persuaded to grant Henry a "double subsidy", a tax at twice the traditional rate, to recover his inheritance from the French. On 19 April 1415, Henry again asked the Great Council to sanction war with France, this time they agreed. Henry's army landed in northern France on 13 August 1415, carried by a fleet described by Shakespeare as "a city on the inconstant billows dancing / For so appears this fleet majestical", it was reported to comprise 1,500 ships, but far smaller. The army of about 12,000, up to 20,000 horses besieged the port of Harfleur; the siege took longer than expected.
The town surrendered on 22 September, the English army did not leave until 8 October. The campaign season was coming to an end, the English army had suffered many casualties through disease. Rather than retire directly to England for the winter, with his costly expedition resulting in the capture of only one town, Henry decided to march most of his army through Normandy to the port of Calais, the English stronghold in northern France, to demonstrate by his presence in the territory at the head of an army that his right to rule in the duchy was more than a mere abstract legal and historical claim, he intended the manoeuvre as a deliberate provocation to battle aimed at the dauphin, who had failed to respond to Henry's personal challenge to combat at Harfleur. The French had raised an army during the siege; this was not a feudal army, but an army paid through a system similar to the English. The French hoped to raise 9,000 troops. After Henry V marched to the north, the French moved to block them along the River Somme.
They were successful for a time, forcing Henry to move south, away from Calais, to find a ford