Correspondence regarding Crecy

Letter from Richard Wynkeley, regarding the Battle of Crecy

A week after the Battle of Crécy the English had reached Bologne. Here, the English had time to take stock of what had occurred in the battle and on the campaign in general. A spate of letters were written in this period, which provide a range of views of the events. One such letter was written by Richard Wynkeley on 2nd September 1346. It also includes information about events prior to Crécy, omitted from the following quote:

“From there [Abbeville], our lord the king went towards Crécy, where his adversary came up with him, estimated at 12,000 knights and 60,000 others under arms. The adversary himself, intending to attack the king personally, stationed himself in the front line; and he was opposed by the prince, who was in our front line. After a fierce and prolonged conflict, the adversary was twice driven off, and a third time, having gathered his men, the fighting was fiercely renewed. But, by the grace of God, two kings were killed in the battle: the king of Bohemia and the king of Majorca. Two archbishops were also killed, the archbishop of Sens and another whose name is unknown. In addition, the duke of Lorraine, the counts of Alencon, Blois, Flanders, Aumale, Beaumont (that is, John of Hainault) and Harcourt with his two sons, and six German counts were killed, besides numerous other barons and knights, whose names are not yet known; but according to the French prisoners, the flower of the whole knighthood of France has been killed. The king of France, so it is said, was wounded in the face by an arrow, and only just escaped. His standard bearer was killed in his sight, and his standard was torn to shreds. And, praise be to Him who saves those who trust in Him, apart from two knights and a squire, the whole army is intact and unharmed; no nobles were killed, but only a few Welsh, not at the time, but later, because they exposed themselves foolishly to danger. Farewell in the name of Our Lord Jesus Christ and give thanks to God, Who had delivered our lord the king and his army from great danger. Written between Boulogne and Wissant, 2 September”.

Related Content

King Edward III

The Skirmish/ Battle at Blanchetaque

The Battle of Crecy

Siege of Calais

Books on the Hundred Years War

Trial by Battle: The Hundred Years War, Vol. 1. Johnathon Sumption. 

Hundred Years War Vol 2: Trial By Fire, Johnathon Sumption. 

Hundred Years War Vol 3: Divided HousesJohnathon Sumption. 

Hundred Years War Vol 4: Cursed KingsJohnathon Sumption. 

Dan Moorhouse

Dan Moorhouse graduated in History and Politics and has since undertaken postgraduate studies in Medieval History and Education. Dan is a member of the Royal Historical Society and has previously been a member of the Historical Association’s Secondary Education Committee. Dan’s early publishing was in the Secondary School History Education field. This included co-authoring the Becta Award shortlisted Dynamic Learning: Medicine Through Time series for Hodder Murray and contributing to the Bafta Award winning Smallpox Through Time documentary series by A former teacher, Dan now concentrates on research and writing, predominantly in Medieval English history. Books by Dan Moorhouse On this day in the Wars of the Roses On this day in the Hundred Years War

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