So, the anniversary of Agincourt is here, and one of my friends sent me this link to a NYT story on the recent scholarship, particularly the controversy over whether or not the English were really heavily outnumbered.
It’s a tough call, deciding whether Anne Curry or Cliff Rogers presents the better arguments for French numbers. I tend to lean toward Rogers, though I suspect that it is rather too common to calculate standard formulas for the supporting personnel accompanying French men-at-arms. How many valets and esquires accompanied a man-at-arms was most likely anything but standardized in practice. And one also does wonder about the speed with which such a large force could have been assembled, moved, and supplied, as Curry and other scholars note. So, it’s tough to say. In his outstanding article in The Hundred Years War II: Wider Vistas, Rogers has cogent objections to Curry’s reasoning. It will unlikely be resolved for some time, but I’m still of the impression that Henry V was significantly outnumbered, even if wasn’t the 4-1 odds often cited.