The History Of France

History Of Europe During The Middle Ages
Book: Book I:
Author: Hallam, Henry

Part Eight

Though it is impossible to reconcile the conduct of Charles upon this
occasion to the stern principles of rectitude which ought always to be obeyed,
yet the exceeding injustice of Edward in the former war, and the miseries
which he inflicted upon an unoffending people in the prosecution of his claim,
will go far towards extenuating this breach of the treaty of Bretigni. It is
observed, indeed, with some truth by Rapin, that we judge of Charles'
prudence by the event; and that, if he had been unfortunate in the war, he
would have brought on himself the reproaches of all mankind, and even of those
writers who are now most ready to extol him. But his measures had been so
sagaciously taken, that, except through that perverseness of fortune, against
which, especially in war, there is no security, he could hardly fail of
success. The elder Edward was declining through age, and the younger through
disease; the ceded provinces were eager to return to their native king, and
their garrisons, as we may infer by their easy reduction, feeble and
ill-supplied. France, on the other hand, had recovered breath after her
losses; the sons of those who had fallen or fled at Poitiers were in the
field; a king, not personally warlike, but eminently wise and popular,
occupied the throne of the rash and intemperate John. She was restored by the
policy of Charles V. and the valor of Du Guesclin. This hero, a Breton
gentleman without fortune or exterior graces, was the greatest ornament of
France during that age. Though inferior, as it seems, to Lord Chandos in
military skill, as well as in the polished virtues of chivalry, his unwearied
activity, his talent of inspiring confidence, his good fortune, the generosity
and frankness of his character, have preserved a fresh recollection of his
name, which has hardly been the case with our countryman.

In a few campaigns the English were deprived of almost all their
conquests, and even, in a great degree, of their original possessions in
Guienne. They were still formidable enemies, not only from their courage and
alacrity in the war, but on account of the keys of France which they held in
their hands; Bordeaux, Bayonne, and Calais, by inheritance or conquest; Brest
and Cherbourg, in mortgage from their allies, the Duke of Brittany and King of
Navarre. But the successor of Edward III. was Richard II.; a reign of
feebleness and sedition gave no opportunity for prosecuting schemes of
ambition. The war, protracted with few distinguished events for several
years, was at length suspended by repeated armistices, not, indeed, very
strictly observed, and which the animosity of the English would not permit to
settle in any regular treaty. Nothing less than the terms obtained at
Bretigni, emphatically called the Great Peace, would satisfy a frank and
courageous people, who deemed themselves cheated by the manner of its
infraction. The war was therefore always popular in England, and the credit
which an ambitious prince, Thomas Duke of Gloucester, obtained in that
country, was chiefly owing to the determined opposition which he showed to all
French connections. But the politics of Richard II. were of a different cast;
and Henry IV. was equally anxious to avoid hostilities with France; so that,
before the unhappy condition of that kingdom tempted his son to revive the
claims of Edward in still more favorable circumstances, there had been thirty
years of respite, and even some intervals of friendly intercourse between the
two nations. Both, indeed, were weakened by internal discord; but France more
fatally than England. But for the calamities of Charles VI.'s reign, she
would probably have expelled her enemies from the kingdom. The strength of
that fertile and populous country was recruited with surprising rapidity. Sir
Hugh Calverley, a famous captain in the wars of Edward III., while serving in
Flanders, laughed at the herald, who assured him that the King of France's
army, then entering the country, amounted to 26,000 lances; asserting that he
had often seen their largest musters, but never so much as a fourth part of
the number. ^* The relapse of this great kingdom under Charles VI. was more
painful and perilous than her first crisis; but she recovered from each
through her intrinsic and inextinguishable resources.

[Footnote *: Froissart, p. ii. c. 142.]

Charles V., surnamed the Wise, after a reign, which, if we overlook a
little obliquity in the rupture of the peace of Bretigni, may be deemed one of
the most honorable in French history, dying prematurely, left the crown to his
son, a boy of thirteen, under the care of three ambitious uncles, the dukes of
Anjou, Berry, and Burgundy. [A.D. 1380.] Charles had retrieved the glory,
restored the tranquillity, revived the spirit of his country; the severe
trials which exercised his regency after the battle of Poitiers had
disciplined his mind; he became a sagacious statesman, an encourager of
literature, a beneficent lawgiver. He erred, doubtless, though upon plausible
grounds, in accumulating a vast treasure, which the Duke of Anjou seized
before he was cold in the grave. But all the fruits of his wisdom were lost
in the succeeding reign. In a government essentially popular the youth or
imbecility of the sovereign creates no material derangement. In a monarchy,
where all the springs of the system depend upon one central force, these
accidents, which are sure in the course of a few generations to recur, can
scarcely fail to dislocate the whole machine. During the forty years that
Charles VI. bore the name of king, rather than reigned in France, that country
was reduced to a state far more deplorable than during the captivity of John.

A great change had occurred in the political condition of France during
the fourteenth century. As the feudal militia became unserviceable, the
expenses of war were increased through the necessity of taking troops into
constant pay; and while more luxurious refinements of living heightened the
temptations to profuseness, the means of enjoying them were lessened by
improvident alienations of the domain. Hence, taxes, hitherto almost unknown,
were levied incessantly, and with all those circumstances of oppression which
are natural to the fiscal proceedings of an arbitrary government. These, as
has been said before, gave rise to the unpopularity of the two first Valois,
and were nearly leading to a complete revolution in the convulsions that
succeeded the battle of Poitiers. The confidence reposed in Charles V.'s
wisdom and economy kept everything at rest during his reign, though the taxes
were still very heavy. But the seizure of his vast accumulations by the Duke
of Anjou, and the ill faith with which the new government imposed subsidies,
after promising their abolition, provoked the people of Paris, and sometimes
of other places, to repeated seditions. The States-General not only compelled
the government to revoke these impositions and restore the nation, at least
according to the language of edicts, to all their liberties, but, with less
wisdom, refused to make any grant of money. Indeed a remarkable spirit of
democratical freedom was then rising in those classes on whom the crown and
nobility had so long trampled. An example was held out by the Flemings, who,
always tenacious of their privileges, because conscious of their ability to
maintain them, were engaged in a furious conflict with Louis Count of
Flanders. ^s The court of France took part in this war; and after obtaining a
decisive victory over the citizens of Ghent, Charles VI. returned to chastise
those of Paris. ^t Unable to resist the royal army, the city was treated as
the spoil of conquest; its immunities abridged; its most active leaders put to
death; a fine of uncommon severity imposed; and the taxes renewed by arbitrary
prerogative. But the people preserved their indignation for a favorable
moment; and were unfortunately led by it, when rendered subservient to the
ambition of others, into a series of crimes, and a long alienation from the
interests of their country.

[Footnote s: The Flemish rebellion, which originated in an attempt, suggested
by bad advisers to the count, to impose a tax upon the people of Ghent without
their consent, is related in a very interesting manner by Froissart, p. ii. c.
37, &c., who equals Herodotus in simplicity, liveliness, and power over the
heart. I would advise the historical student to acquaint himself with these
transactions and with the corresponding tumults at Paris.

They are among the eternal lessons of history; for the unjust
encroachments of courts, the intemperate passions of the multitude, the
ambition of demagogues, the cruelty of victorious factions, will never cease
to have their parallels and their analogies; while the military achievements
of distant times afford in general no instruction, and can hardly occupy too
little of our time in historical studies. The prefaces to the fifth and sixth
volumes of the Ordonnances des Rois de France contain more accurate
information as to the Parisian disturbances than can be found in Froissart.]

[Footnote t: If Charles VI. had been defeated by the Flemings, the
insurrection of the Parisians, Froissart says, would have spread over France;
toute gentillesse et noblesse eut ete morte et perdue en France; nor would the
Jacquerie have ever been si grande et si horrible. c. 120. To the example of
the Gantois he ascribes the tumults which broke out about the same time in
England as well as in France. c. 84. The Flemish insurrection would probably
have had more important consequences if it had been cordially supported by the
English government. But the danger of encouraging that democratical spirit
which so strongly leavened the commons of England might justly be deemed by
Richard II.'s council much more than a counterbalance to the advantage of
distressing France. When too late, some attempts were made, and the Flemish
towns acknowledged Richard as King of France in 1384. Rymer, t. vii. p. 448.]

It is difficult to name a limit beyond which taxes will not be borne
without impatience, when they appear to be called for by necessity, and
faithfully applied; nor is it impracticable for a skilful minister to deceive
the people in both these respects. But the sting of taxation is wastefulness.
What high-spirited man could see without indignation the earnings of his
labor, yielded ungrudgingly to the public defence, become the spoil of
parasites and speculators? It is this that mortifies the liberal hand of
public spirit; and those statesmen who deem the security of government to
depend not on laws and armies, but on the moral sympathies and prejudices of
the people, will vigilantly guard against even the suspicion of prodigality.
In the present stage of society it is impossible to conceive that degree of
misapplication which existed in the French treasury under Charles VI., because
the real exigencies of the state could never again be so inconsiderable.
Scarcely any military force was kept up; and the produce of the grievous
impositions then levied was chiefly lavished upon the royal household, ^u or
plundered by the officers of the government. This naturally resulted from the
peculiar and afflicting circumstances of this reign. The Duke of Anjou
pretended to be entitled by the late king's appointment, if not by the
constitution of France, to exercise the government as regent during the
minority; ^v but this period, which would naturally be very short, a law of
Charles V. having fixed the age of majority at thirteen, was still more
abridged by consent; and after the young monarch's coronation, he was
considered as reigning with full personal authority. Anjou, Berry, and
Burgundy together with the king's maternal uncle, the Duke of Bourbon, divided
the actual exercise of government.

[Footnote u: The expenses of the royal household, which under Charles V. were
94,000 livres, amounted in 1412 to 450,000. Villaret, t. iii. p. 243. Yet
the king was so ill supplied that his plate had been pawned. When Montagu,
minister of the finances, was arrested, in 1409, all this plate was found
concealed in his house.]

[Footnote v: It has always been an unsettled point whether the presumptive
heir is entitled to the regency of France; and, if he be so to the regency,
whether this includes the custody of the minor's person. The particular case
of the Duke of Anjou is subject to a considerable apparent difficulty. Two
instruments of Charles V., bearing the same date of October, 1374, as
published by Dupuy (Traite de Majorite des Rois, p. 161), are plainly
irreconcilable with each other; the former giving the exclusive regency to the
Duke of Anjou, reserving the custody of the minor's person to other guardians;
the latter conferring not only this custody, but the government of the
kingdom, on the queen, and on the dukes of Burgundy and Bourbon, without
mentioning the Duke of Anjou's name. Daniel calls these testaments of Charles
V., whereas they are in the form of letters-patent; and supposes that the king
had suppressed both, as neither party seems to have availed itself of their
authority in the discussions that took place after the king's death. (Hist.
de France, t. iii. p. 662, edit. 1720.) Villaret, as is too much his custom,
slides over the difficulty without notice. But M. de Brequigni (Mem. de
l'Acad. des Inscript. t. l. p. 533) observes that the second of these
instruments, as published by M. Secousse, in the Ordonnances des Rois, t. vi.
p. 406, differs most essentially from that in Dupuy, and contains no mention
whatever of the government. It is, therefore, easily reconcilable with the
first, that confers the regency on the Duke of Anjou. As Dupuy took it from
the same source as Secousse, namely, the Tresor des Chartes, a strong
suspicion of wilful interpolation falls upon him, or upon the editor of his
posthumous work, printed in 1655. This date will readily suggest a motive for
such an interpolation to those who recollect the circumstances of France at
that time and for some years before; Anne of Austria having maintained herself
in possession of a testamentary regency against the presumptive heir.]

The first of these soon undertook an expedition into Italy, to possess
himself of the crown of Naples, in which he perished. Berry was a profuse and
voluptuous man, of no great talents; though his rank, and the middle position
which he held between struggling parties, made him rather conspicuous
throughout the revolutions of that age. The most respectable of the king's
uncles, the Duke of Bourbon, being further removed from the royal stem, and of
an unassuming character, took a less active part than his three coadjutors.
Burgundy, an ambitious and able prince, maintained the ascendency, until
Charles, weary of a restraint which had been protracted by his uncle till he
was in his twenty-first year, took the reins into his own hands. [A.D. 1387.]
The dukes of Burgundy and Berry retired from court, and the administration was
committed to a different set of men, at the head of whom appeared the
Constable De Clisson, a soldier of great fame in the English wars. The people
rejoiced in the fall of the princes by whose exactions they had been
plundered; but the new ministers soon rendered themselves odious by similar
conduct. The fortune of Clisson, after a few years' favor, amounted to
1,700,000 livres, equal in weight of silver, to say nothing of the
depreciation of money, to ten times that sum at present. ^w

[Footnote w: Froissart, p. iv. c. 46.]

Charles VI. had reigned five years from his assumption of power, when he
was seized with a derangement of intellect [A.D. 1393], which continued,
through a series of recoveries and relapses, to his death. He passed thirty
years in a pitiable state of suffering, neglected by his family, particularly
by the most infamous of women, Isabel of Bavaria, his queen, to a degree which
is hardly credible. ^x The ministers were immediately disgraced; the princes
reassumed their stations. For several years the Duke of Burgundy conducted
the government. But this was in opposition to a formidable rival, Louis, Duke
of Orleans, the king's brother. It was impossible that a prince so near to
the throne, favored by the queen, perhaps with criminal fondness, and by the
people on account of his external graces, should not acquire a share of power.
He succeeded at length in obtaining the whole management of affairs; wherein
the outrageous dissoluteness of his conduct, and still more the excessive
taxes imposed, rendered him altogether odious. The Parisians compared his
administration with that of the Duke of Burgundy; and from that time ranged
themselves on the side of the latter and his family, throughout the long
distractions to which the ambition of these princes gave birth.

[Footnote x: Sismondi inclines to speak more favorably of this queen than most
have done: "Dans les temps posterieurs on s'est plu a faire un monstre de
Isabeau de Baviere." He discredits the suspicion of a criminal intercourse
with the Duke of Orleans, and represents her as merely an indolent woman fond
of good cheer. Yet he owns that the king was so neglected as to suffer from
an excessive want of cleanliness, sometimes even from hunger (xii. 218, 225).
Was this no imputation on his wife? See too Michelet, vi. 42.]

The death of the Duke of Burgundy, in 1404, after several fluctuations of
success between him and the Duke of Orleans, by no means left his party
without a head. Equally brave and ambitious, but far more audacious and
unprincipled, his son John, surnamed Sanspeur, sustained the same contest. A
reconciliation had been, however, brought about with the Duke of Orleans; they
had sworn reciprocal friendship, and participated, as was the custom, in order
to render these obligations more solemn, in the same communion. In the midst
of this outward harmony, the Duke of Orleans was assassinated in the streets
of Paris. [A.D. 1407.] After a slight attempt at concealment, Burgundy avowed
and boasted of the crime, to which he had been instigated, it is said, by
somewhat more than political jealousy. ^y From this fatal moment the
dissensions of the royal family began to assume the complexion of civil war.
The queen, the sons of the Duke of Orleans, with the dukes of Berry and
Bourbon, united against the assassin. But he possessed, in addition to his
own appanage of Burgundy, the county of Flanders as his maternal inheritance;
and the people of Paris, who hated the Duke of Orleans, readily forgave, or
rather exulted in his murder. ^z

[Footnote y: Orleans is said to have boasted of the Duchess of Burgundy's
favors. Vill. t. xii. p. 474. Amelgard, who wrote about eighty years after
the time, says, vim etiam inferre attentare praesumpsit. Notices des
Manuscrits du Roi, t. i. p. 411.]

[Footnote z: Michelet represents this young prince as regretted and beloved;
but his language is full of those strange contrasts and inconsistencies which,
for the sake of effect, this most brilliant writer sometimes employs. "Il
avait, dans ses emportemens de jeunesse, terriblement vexe le peuple; il fut
maudit du peuple, pleure du peuple. Vivant, il couta bien de larmes; mais
combien plus, mort! Si vous eussiez demande a la France si ce jeune homme
etait bien digne de tante d'amour, elle eut repondu, Je l'aimais. Ce n'est
pas seulement pour le bien qu'on aime; qui aime, aime tout, les defauts aussi.
Celui-ci plut comme il etait, mele de bien et de mal. (Hist. de France, vi.
6.) What is the meaning of this love for one who, he has just told us, was
cursed by the people? And if Paris was the representative of France, how did
the people show their affection for the Duke of Orleans, when they were openly
and vehemently the partisans of his murderer? On the first return of the Duke
of Burgundy to Paris after the assassination, the citizens shouted "Noel," the
usual cry on the entrance of the king, to the great displeasure of the queen
and the princes. "Et pour vrai, comme dit est dessus, il estoit tres fort
ayme du commun peuple de Paris, et avoient grand esperance qu'iceluy duc eust
tres grand affection au royaume, et a la chose publicque, et avoient
souvenance des grans tailles qui avoient este mises sus depuis la mort du Duc
Philippe de Bourgogne pere d'iceluy, jusques a l'heure presente, lesquelles
ils entendoient que feust par le moyen dudit Duc d'Orleans. Et pource estoit
grandement encouru en l'indignation d'iceluy peuple, et leur sembloit que Dieu
de sa grace les avoit tres-grandement pour recommandez, quand il avoit
souffert qu'ils fussent hors de sa subjection et governement, et qu'ils en
estoient delivrez." Monstrelet, 34. Compare this with what M. Michelet has
written.]

It is easy to estimate the weakness of the government, from the terms
upon which the Duke of Burgundy was permitted to obtain pardon at Chartres, a
year after the perpetration of the crime. As soon as he entered the royal
presence, everyone rose, except the king, queen, and dauphin. The duke,
approaching the throne, fell on his knees; when a lord, who acted as a sort of
counsel for him, addressed the king: "Sire, the Duke of Burgundy, your cousin
and servant, is come before you, being informed that he has incurred your
displeasure, on account of what he caused to be done to the Duke of Orleans
your brother, for your good and that of your kingdom, as he is ready to prove
when it shall please you to hear it, and therefore requests you, with all
humility, to dismiss your resentment towards him, and to receive him into your
favor." ^a

[Footnote a: Monstrelet, part i. f. 112.]

This insolent apology was all the atonement that could be extorted for
the assassination of the first prince of the blood. It is not wonderful that
the Duke of Burgundy soon obtained the management of affairs, and drove his
adversaries from the capital. [A.D. 1410.] The princes, headed by the
father-in-law of the young Duke of Orleans, the Count of Armagnac, from whom
their party was now denominated, raised their standard against him; and the
north of France was rent to pieces by a protracted civil war, in which neither
party scrupled any extremity of pillage or massacre. Several times peace was
made; but each faction, conscious of their own insincerity, suspected that of
their adversaries. The king, of whose name both availed themselves, was only
in some doubtful intervals of reason capable of rendering legitimate the acts
of either. The dauphin, aware of the tyranny which the two parties alternately
exercised, was forced, even at the expense of perpetuating a civil war, to
balance one against the other, and permit neither to be wholly subdued. He
gave peace to the Armagnacs at Auxerre, in despite of the Duke of Burgundy;
and, having afterwards united with them against this prince, and carried a
successful war into Flanders, he disappointed their revenge by concluding with
him a treaty at Arras. [A.D. 1414.]

This dauphin and his next brother died within sixteen months of each
other, by which the rank devolved upon Charles, youngest son of the king. The
Count of Armagnac, now Constable of France, retained possession of the
government. But his severity, and the weight of taxes, revived the Burgundian
party in Paris, which a rigid proscription had endeavored to destroy. [April,
1417.] He brought on his head the implacable hatred of the queen, whom he had
not only shut out from public affairs, but disgraced by the detection of her
gallantries. Notwithstanding her ancient enmity to the Duke of Burgundy, she
made overtures to him, and, being delivered by his troops from confinement,
declared herself openly on his side. [A.D. 1417.] A few obscure persons stole
the city keys, and admitted the Burgundians into Paris. The tumult which
arose showed in a moment the disposition of the inhabitants; but this was more
horribly displayed a few days afterwards, when the populace, rushing to the
prisons, massacred the Constable d'Armagnac and his partisans. [June 12,
1418.] Between three and four thousand persons were murdered on this day,
which has no parallel but what our own age has witnessed, in the massacre
perpetrated by the same ferocious populace of Paris, under circumstances
nearly similar. Not long afterwards an agreement took place between the Duke
of Burgundy, who had now the king's person as well as the capital in his
hands, and the dauphin, whose party was enfeebled by the loss of almost all
its leaders. [A.D. 1419.] This reconciliation, which mutual interest should
have rendered permanent, had lasted a very short time, when the Duke of
Burgundy was assassinated at an interview with Charles, in his presence, and
by the hands of his friends, though not, perhaps, with his previous knowledge.
^b From whomsoever the crime proceeded, it was a deed of infatuation, and
plunged France afresh into a sea of perils, from which the union of these
factions had just afforded a hope of extricating her.

[Footnote b: There are three suppositions conceivable to explain this
important passage in history, the assassination of John Sanspeur. 1. It was
pretended by the dauphin's friends at the time, and has been maintained more
lately (St. Foix, Essais sur Paris, t. iii. p. 209, edit. 1767), that he had
premeditated the murder of Charles, and that his own was an act of
self-defence. This is, I think, quite improbable; the dauphin had a great
army near the spot, while the duke was only attended by five hundred men.
Villaret, indeed, and St. Foix, in order to throw suspicion upon the Duke of
Burgundy's motives, assert that Henry V. accused him of having made proposals
to him which he could not accept without offending God; and conjecture that
this might mean the assassination of the dauphin. But the expressions of
Henry do not relate to any private proposals of the duke, but to demands made
by him and the queen, as proxies for Charles VI. in conference for peace,
which he says he could not accept without offending God and contravening his
own letters-patent. (Rymer, t. ix. p. 790.) It is not, however, very clear
what this means. 2. The next hypothesis is, that it was the deliberate act of
Charles. But his youth, his feebleness of spirit, and especially the
consternation into which, by all testimonies he was thrown by the event, are
rather adverse to this explanation. 3. It remains only to conclude that
Tanegui de Chastel, and other favorites of the dauphin, long attached to the
Orleans faction, who justly regarded the duke as an infamous assassin, and
might question his sincerity or their own safety if he should regain the
ascendant, took advantage of this opportunity to commit an act of retaliation,
less criminal, but not less ruinous in its consequences, than that which had
provoked it. Charles, however, by his subsequent conduct, recognized their
deed, and naturally exposed himself to the resentment of the young Duke of
Burgundy.]

It has been mentioned already that the English war had almost ceased
during the reigns of Richard II. and Henry IV. The former of these was
attached by inclination, and latterly by marriage, to the court of France;
and, though the French government showed at first some disposition to revenge
his dethronement, yet the new king's success, as well as domestic quarrels,
deterred it from any serious renewal of the war. A long commercial connection
had subsisted between England and Flanders, which the dukes of Burgundy, when
they became sovereigns of the latter country upon the death of Count Louis in
1384, were studious to preserve by separate truces. ^c They acted upon the
same pacific policy when their interest predominated in the councils of
France. Henry had even a negotiation pending for the marriage of his eldest
son with a princess of Burgundy, ^d when an unexpected proposal from the
opposite side set more tempting views before his eyes. The Armagnacs, pressed
hard by the Duke of Burgundy, offered, in consideration of only 4000 troops,
the pay of which they would themselves defray, to assist him in the recovery
of Guienne and Poitou. Four princes of the blood - Berry, Bourbon, Orleans,
and Alencon - disgraced their names by signing this treaty. ^e [May, 1412.]
Henry broke off his alliance with Burgundy, and sent a force into France,
which found on its arrival that the princes had made a separate treaty,
without the least concern for their English allies. After his death, Henry V.
engaged for some time in a series of negotiations with the French court, where
the Orleans party now prevailed, and with the Duke of Burgundy. He even
secretly treated at the same time for a marriage with Catherine of France
(which seems to have been his favorite, as it was ultimately his successful
project), and with a daughter of the duke - a duplicity not creditable to his
memory. ^f But Henry's ambition, which aimed at the highest quarry, was not
long fettered by negotiation; and, indeed, his proposals of marrying Catherine
were coupled with such exorbitant demands, as France, notwithstanding all her
weakness, could not admit, though she would have ceded Guienne, and given a
vast dowry with the princess. ^g He invaded Normandy, took Harfleur, and won
the great battle of Azincourt on his march to Calais. ^h [A.D. 1415.]

[Footnote c: Rymer, t. viii. p. 511; Villaret, t. xii. p. 174.]

[Footnote d: Idem, t. viii. p. 721.]

[Footnote e: Idem, t. viii. p. 726, 737, 738.]

[Footnote f: Rymer, t. ix. p. 136.]

[Footnote g: The terms required by Henry's ambassadors in 1415 were the crown
of France; or, at least, reserving Henry's rights to that, Normandy, Touraine,
Maine, Guienne, with the homage of Brittany and Flanders. The French offered
Guienne and Saintonge, and a dowry of 800,000 gold crowns for Catherine. The
English demanded 2,000,000. Rym. t. ix. p. 218.]

[Footnote h: The English army at Azincourt was probably of not more than
15,000 men; the French were at the least 50,000, and, by some computations,
much more numerous. They lost 10,000 killed, of whom 9000 were knights or
gentlemen. Almost as many were made prisoners. The English, according to
Monstrelet, lost 1600 men; but their own historians reduce this to a very
small number. It is curious that the Duke of Berry, who advised the French to
avoid an action, had been in the battle of Poitiers fifty-nine years before.
Vill. t. xiii. p. 355.]

 

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