Henry V (16 September 1386 – 31 August 1422), also called Henry of Monmouth, was King of England from 1413 until his death in 1422. Despite his relatively short reign, Henry's outstanding military successes in the Hundred Years' War against France made England one of the strongest military powers in Europe.
One of the most renowned kings in English history, Henry V (1387-1422) led two successful invasions of France, cheering his outnumbered troops to victory at the 1415 Battle of Agincourt and...
Henry V, (born September 16?, 1387, Monmouth, Monmouthshire, Wales—died August 31, 1422, Bois de Vincennes, France), king of England (1413–22) of the house of Lancaster, son of Henry IV. As victor of the Battle of Agincourt (1415, in the Hundred Years’ War with France), he made England one of the strongest kingdoms in Europe.
- Young Prince Hal, Son of A Usurper
- King Henry V of England
- The French Wars and The Battle of Agincourt
- Henry V and Catherine of Valois
- The Final Years
Despite his later fame, very little is known of Henry V’s early years. In fact, we do not even know for certain what year he was born. In either 1386 or 1387, Henry Bolingbroke, earl of Derby, and his wife Mary de Bohun, welcomed their first-born son Henry at their castle in present-day Monmouth, Wales. Henry’s father, who would later be Henry IV, was a prominent nobleman and a cousin of the reigning king, Richard II. He was one of the leaders of a rebellion against Richard, and when he was banished in 1398, young Henry was taken as the king’s hostage. Interestingly, Henry became close with his captor, who treated him surprisingly well given the circumstances. In fact, Richard gave the boy an annual allowance of £500, brought him along on his expedition to Ireland, and even knighted him. In their absence, Henry’s father returned from exile and gained popular support in England. By 1399, Bolingbroke seized the throne, claiming a right to the crown through his descent from Henry III,...
After Henry’s father died of an illness in 1413, the 26-year-old prince was crowned King Henry V of England. His coronation ceremony took place in Westminster Abbeyon April 9, 1413, and the snow that fell that day was interpreted as a sign that difficult times would come. On the domestic front, like his father, Henry V faced criticism and conspiracies from both former friends and longtime enemies who rejected his legitimacy and wanted to place Richard II’s heir, Edmund Mortimer, on the throne instead. In The King, the reluctant new ruler insists “I am not my father,” pushing off his advisors, who keep nagging him to go to war. He also declares that the men who were his father’s enemies, the rebellious lords, will be pardoned and forgiven, and that a new peace will be brought about in England. In reality, it was Henry’s father that had wanted peace. The new Henry V wanted war. He protected his crown and crushed these rebellions, often showing a brutal side by refusing to show mercy t...
Henry V set sail to France in 1415, just two years after his coronation. His early battlefield experience prepared him well: He quickly began collecting victories. The Royal Family’s official website calls him a “brilliant general” — in stark contrast to the haphazard and spasmodic operations the English planned in the previous century. First, in August 1415, he laid siege to the port town of Harfleur and captured it after attacking the city with his large fleet. In Shakespeare’s rendition, Henry V rallies his troops before the siege by beckoningthem to join him “once more upon the breach, dear friends, once more.” When French defenses prevented him from crossing the Somme River with his 6,000-strong army, the French intercepted him at the city of Agincourt. On October 25, 1415 — St. Crispin’s Day — Henry once again rallied his troops with a powerful speech — at least according to Shakespeare. In the play, his character urges his “band of brothers” to have courage. This dramatized s...
Henry V returned home victorious, his performance at Agincourt solidifying his powerful position on the European political stage. The Holy Roman Emperor honored him with a visit in 1416, and together they managed to end the papal schism when Martin V became the new pope in 1417. But contrary to what we would think after watching Agincourt as the dramatic climax to Henry V’s life in Shakespeare’s play and The King, this was not the end in reality. Henry sailed back to France in 1417 and launched a new campaign of sieges, continuing his work on the battlefield. By 1419, he conquered Rouen, the capital of Normandy, bringing the duchy into English control. These victories forced France to its knees and King Charles VI agreed to the terms of the Treaty of Troyes on May 21, 1420, which named Henry V as the rightful heir to the French crown, disinheriting the Dauphin. The treaty also betrothed him to the French Princess Catherine of Valois (played by Lily-Rose Depp in The King), the younge...
Henry V and Catherine of Valois arrived in England in 1421 and she gave birth to their only son who — you guessed it — they named Henry. In the meantime, Henry V had already returned to France yet again after the death of his younger brother, who was still fighting on French soil. He continued to fight for French territory and engage in the complicated politics of the nation which he was supposed to inherit. In October 1421, he led a siege on the French city of Meaux. The battle was difficult and long — it stretched on for seven months — and during the bitter winter Henry V fell ill. He suffered from battlefield dysentery and died on Aug. 31, 1422, just shy of his 36th birthday. The son he left behind, though less than nine months old, was quickly proclaimed King Henry VI. The difficult times that Henry V’s coronation snowfall foretold came to be with his son, whose tragic reign was riddled with bouts of mental health struggles and the loss of most of the French territories that his...
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Oct 31, 2019 · The main surviving likeness of Henry V (National Portrait Gallery, London) On May 21, 1420, Henry and Charles signed the Treaty of Troyes, which disinherited the dauphin (the future Charles VII) in...
- Meilan Solly
During the Hundred Years War between England and France, Henry V, the young king of England, leads his forces to victory at the Battle of Agincourt in northern France.
Two months before, Henry had crossed the English Channel with 11,000 men and laid siege to Harfleur in Normandy. After five weeks the town surrendered, but Henry lost half his men to disease and battle casualties. He decided to march his army northeast to Calais, where he would meet the English fleet and return to England. At Agincourt, however, a vast French army of 20,000 men stood in his path, greatly outnumbering the exhausted English archers, knights, and men-at-arms.
The battlefield lay on 1,000 yards of open ground between two woods, which prevented large-scale maneuvers and thus worked to Henrys advantage. At 11 a.m. on October 25, the battle commenced. The English stood their ground as French knights, weighed down by their heavy armor, began a slow advance across the muddy battlefield. The French were met by a furious bombardment of artillery from the English archers, who wielded innovative longbows with a range of 250 yards. French cavalrymen tried and failed to overwhelm the English positions, but the archers were protected by a line of pointed stakes. As more and more French knights made their way onto the crowded battlefield, their mobility decreased further, and some lacked even the room to raise their arms and strike a blow. At this point, Henry ordered his lightly equipped archers to rush forward with swords and axes, and the unencumbered Englishmen massacred the French.
Almost 6,000 Frenchmen lost their lives during the Battle of Agincourt, while English deaths amounted to just over 400. With odds greater than three to one, Henry had won one of the great victories of military history. After further conquests in France, Henry V was recognized in 1420 as heir to the French throne and the regent of France. He was at the height of his powers but died just two years later of camp fever near Paris.
SCENE I. France. Before Harfleur. Alarum. Enter KING HENRY, EXETER, BEDFORD, GLOUCESTER, and Soldiers, with scaling-ladders KING HENRY V Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more; Or close the wall up with our English dead. In peace there's nothing so becomes a man As modest stillness and humility: But when the blast of war blows in ...
Henry V and the resumption of the Hundred Years’ War The Hundred Years’ War was a discontinuous conflict between England and France that spanned two centuries. At issue was the question of the legitimate succession to the French crown as well as the ownership of several French territories.
Henry V then adopted the title Heir of France instead. Henry V and Charles VI died within two months of each other in 1422, and Henry V's infant son (Charles VI's grandson) Henry VI became King of France. He was the only English king who was de facto King of France, rather than using the style as a mere title of pretense.
Now, the 1-year-old Henry was King of England and France. Henry VI would grow up in the shadow of his father’s glory — for more on that, read Shakespeare’s King Henry VI Parts 1, 2, and 3.