This use of stakes could have been inspired by the Battle of Nicopolis of 1396, where forces of the Ottoman Empire used the tactic against French cavalry. The military aspects of this account are similarly specious. Legend says that the British archers were so formidable that the ones captured by the French had their index and middle fingers cut off so that they . Rogers says each of the 10,000 men-at-arms would be accompanied by a gros valet (an armed, armoured and mounted military servant) and a noncombatant page, counts the former as fighting men, and concludes thus that the French in fact numbered 24,000. Im even more suspicious of the alleged transformation of p to f. [110][111][112] Ian Mortimer endorsed Curry's methodology, though applied it more liberally, noting how she "minimises French numbers (by limiting her figures to those in the basic army and a few specific additional companies) and maximises English numbers (by assuming the numbers sent home from Harfleur were no greater than sick lists)", and concluded that "the most extreme imbalance which is credible" is 15,000 French against 8,0009,000 English. [81] In any case, to protect themselves as much as possible from the arrows, the French had to lower their visors and bend their helmeted heads to avoid being shot in the face, as the eye- and air-holes in their helmets were among the weakest points in the armour. [68], Henry's men were already very weary from hunger, illness and retreat. Before the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, the French, anticipating victory over the English, proposed to cut off the middle finger of all captured soldiers. When the English won the battle the soldiers waved their middle fingers at the French in defiance, thus flipping the bird was born before a defensive battle was possible. The impact of thousands of arrows, combined with the slog in heavy armour through the mud, the heat and difficulty breathing in plate armour with the visor down,[83] and the crush of their numbers, meant the French men-at-arms could "scarcely lift their weapons" when they finally engaged the English line. [127], Shakespeare's play presented Henry as leading a truly English force into battle, playing on the importance of the link between the monarch and the common soldiers in the fight. John Keegan argues that the longbows' main influence on the battle at this point was injuries to horses: armoured only on the head, many horses would have become dangerously out of control when struck in the back or flank from the high-elevation, long-range shots used as the charge started. It lasted longer than Henry had anticipated, and his numbers were significantly diminished as a result of casualties, desertions, and disease. Tudor re-invention, leading to the quintessential Shakespearean portrayal of "we happy few", has been the most influential, but every century has made its own accretions. The English men-at-arms in plate and mail were placed shoulder to shoulder four deep. It may be difficult to pinpoint exactly when the middle finger gesture originated, but some historians trace its roots to ancient Rome. Thus, when the victorious English waved their middle fingers at the defeated French, they said, "See, we can still pluck yew! 1.3M views 4 months ago Medieval Battles - In chronological order The year 1415 was the first occasion since 1359 that an English king had invaded France in person. In the song Hotel California, what does colitas mean? [45] A second, smaller mounted force was to attack the rear of the English army, along with its baggage and servants. The 'middle finger salute' is derived from the defiant gestures of English archers whose fingers had been severed by the French at the Battle of Agincourt. [133] Branagh's version gives a longer, more realist portrayal of the battle itself, drawing on both historical sources and images from the Vietnam and Falkland Wars.[134]. Send questions to Cecil via [74], The plate armour of the French men-at-arms allowed them to close the 1,000 yards or so to the English lines while being under what the French monk of Saint Denis described as "a terrifying hail of arrow shot". Subject: Truth About the Finger In the film Titanic the character Rose is shown giving the finger to Jack, another character. The insulting gesture of extending one's middle finger (referred to as digitus impudicus in Latin) originated long before the Battle of Agincourt. Image source As the mle developed, the French second line also joined the attack, but they too were swallowed up, with the narrow terrain meaning the extra numbers could not be used effectively. I thought the French threatened to cut off the primary finger of the English longbowmen (the middle finger was neeed the most to pull the bowstring). Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). The point is, the middle-finger/phallus equation goes back way before the Titanic, the Battle of Agincourt, or probably even that time Sextillus cut off Pylades with his chariot. It. According to research, heres the true story: Before the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, the French, anticipating victory over the English, proposed to cut off the middle finger of all captured English soldiers. Jones, P. N. (1992). |. King Henry V at the Battle of Agincourt, 1415 by Sir John Gilbert, Atkinson Art Gallery, Southport, Lancashire. Its origins can be traced back to 1066 . This article was. England had been fraught with political discord since Henry IV of the house of Lancaster (father of Henry V) had usurped the throne from Richard II in 1399. Adam Koford, Salt Lake City, Utah, Now for the facts. Made just prior to the invasion of Normandy, Olivier's rendition gives the battle what Sarah Hatchuel has termed an "exhilarating and heroic" tone, with an artificial, cinematic look to the battle scenes. Many people who have seen the film question whether giving the finger was done around the time of the Titanic disaster, or was it a more recent gesture invented by some defiant seventh-grader. The Battle of 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 Crcy (1346) and Battle of Poitiers (1356). They had been weakened by the siege at Harfleur and had marched over 200 miles (more than 320 km), and many among them were suffering from dysentery. The French, who were overwhelmingly favored to win the battle, Continue Reading 41 2 7 Alexander L The f-word itself is Germanic with early-medieval roots; the earliest attested use in English in an unambiguous sexual context is in a document from 1310. Battle of Agincourt, (October 25, 1415)Battle resulting in the decisive victory of the English over the French in the Hundred Years' War. [87] Whether this was part of a deliberate French plan or an act of local brigandage is unclear from the sources. The English won in a major upset and waved the body part in question at the French in defiance. And for a variety of reasons, it made no military sense whatsoever for the French to capture English archers, then mutilate them by cutting off their fingers. Details the English victory over the French at the Battle of Agincourt. [69] (The use of stakes was an innovation for the English: during the Battle of Crcy, for example, the archers had been instead protected by pits and other obstacles. An account purporting to offer the historical origins of the obscene middle-finger extended hand gesture (varously known as "flipping the bird," "flipping someone off," or the "one-finger salute") is silly, and so obviously a joke that shouldn't need any debunking. Historians disagree less about the French numbers. In 1999, Snopesdebunked more of the historical aspects of the claim, as well as thecomponent explaininghow the phrase pluck yew graduallychanged form to begin with an f( here ). Before the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, the French, anticipating victory over the English, proposed to cut off the middle finger of all captured English soldiers. Why do some people have that one extra-long fingernail on the pinkie finger. [76] Modern historians are divided on how effective the longbows would have been against plate armour of the time. However, a need to reassert his authority at home (as well as his own ambition and a sense of justice) led Henry V to renew English claims in France. Henry managed to subjugate Normandy in 1419, a victory that was followed by the Treaty of Troyes in 1420, which betrothed Henry to King Charles VIs daughter Catherine and named him heir to the French crown. All quotes delayed a minimum of 15 minutes. Contemporary chroniclers did not criticise him for it. [23] Thomas Morstede, Henry V's royal surgeon,[24] had previously been contracted by the king to supply a team of surgeons and makers of surgical instruments to take part in the Agincourt campaign. [126], Shakespeare's depiction of the battle also plays on the theme of modernity. It sounds rather fishy to me. In pursuit of his claim to the French throne, Henry V invaded Normandy with an army of 11,000 men in August 1415. As John Keegan wrote in his history of warfare: "To meet a similarly equipped opponent was the occasion for which the armoured soldier trained perhaps every day of his life from the onset of manhood. What it is supposed to represent I have no idea. [114][115] Curry and Mortimer questioned the reliability of the Gesta, as there have been doubts as to how much it was written as propaganda for Henry V. Both note that the Gesta vastly overestimates the number of French in the battle; its proportions of English archers to men-at-arms at the battle are also different from those of the English army before the siege of Harfleur. The English and Welsh archers on the flanks drove pointed wooden stakes, or palings, into the ground at an angle to force cavalry to veer off. The . Certainly, d'Azincourt was a local knight but he might have been chosen to lead the attack because of his local knowledge and the lack of availability of a more senior soldier. Keegan, John. [62] Le Fvre and Wavrin similarly say that it was signs of the French rearguard regrouping and "marching forward in battle order" which made the English think they were still in danger. The "middle finger" gesture does not derive from the mutilation of English archers at the Battle of Agincourt in 1415. [26] He also 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 two candidates with the strongest claims were Edward III of England, who was the son of Charles's sister, and Philip, Charles's paternal . The original usage of this mudra can be traced back as far as the Battle of Agincourt in 1415. [96] Of the great royal office holders, France lost its constable (Albret), an admiral (the lord of Dampierre), the Master of Crossbowmen (David de Rambures, dead along with three sons), Master of the Royal Household (Guichard Dauphin) and prvt of the marshals. The Battle of Agincourt (/dnkr(t)/ AJ-in-kor(t);[a] French: Azincourt [azku]) was an English victory in the Hundred Years' War. Although an audience vote was "too close to call", Henry was unanimously found guilty by the court on the basis of "evolving standards of civil society".[136][137][138]. [46] Many lords and gentlemen demanded and got places in the front lines, where they would have a higher chance to acquire glory and valuable ransoms; this resulted in the bulk of the men-at-arms being massed in the front lines and the other troops, for which there was no remaining space, to be placed behind. And I aint kidding yew. It goes on to state thatafter an unexpected victory, the English soldiersmocked thedefeatedFrenchtroopsbywavingtheir middle fingers( here ). Soon after the victory at Agincourt, a number of popular folk songs were created about the battle, the most famous being the "Agincourt Carol", produced in the first half of the 15th century. Maybe it means five and was a symbol of support for Henry V? Winston Churchhill can be seen using the V as a rallying call. Updates? Mortimer also considers that the Gesta vastly inflates the English casualties 5,000 at Harfleur, and that "despite the trials of the march, Henry had lost very few men to illness or death; and we have independent testimony that no more than 160 had been captured on the way". Rogers, Mortimer[117] and Sumption[41] all give more or less 10,000 men-at-arms for the French, using as a source the herald of the Duke of Berry, an eyewitness. But lets not quibble. In a book on the battle of Agincourt, Anne Curry, Professor Emeritus of Medieval History at the University of Southampton, addressed a similar claim prescribed to the V-sign, also considered an offensive gesture: No chronicle or sixteenth-centuryhistory says that English archers made any gesture to the French after the battle in order to show they still had their fingers. The fact that Winston Churchill sometimes made his V-for-victory gesture rudely suggests that it is of much more recent vintage. The Battle of Agincourt was another famous battle where longbowmen had a particularly important . And although the precise etymology of the English word fuck is still a matter of debate, it is linguistically nonsensical to maintain that that word entered the language because the "difficult consonant cluster at the beginning" of the phase 'pluck yew' has "gradually changed to a labiodental fricative 'f.'" ar global healthcare trust, inc,