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Osprey Campaign 94 : Orleans 1429 : France turns the Tide

In 1415 King Henry V of England invaded France and won an overwhelming victory at the Battle of Agincourt. Following his victory, the English conquered a large part of northern France, and by 1429 were besieging the city of Orlean. French fortunes in the Hundred Years War were at their lowest ebb, an English victory seemed inevitable. Northern France, including Paris was firmly under English control and the city of Orleans was besieged by an English Army. Orleans was the gateway to the Dukedom of Berry, the principal stronghold of the French Dauphin. Conquest of Berry would render continued French resistance all but impossible. The French defenders of Orleans considerably outnumbered the pitifully weak English besiegers. So badly had French morale been undermined, and so great was the terror inspired by English victories, that the French made no effort to dislodge their tormentors. In this darkest hour a deeply religious peasant girl from Champagne, came to the Dauphin convinced that she had a divine mission to help him defeat the English. Her name was Joan of Arc. In less than 4 months Joan's inspired leadership helped to break the siege of Orleans and recapture many of the towns of the Loire valley. On 19 June her army surprised and routed an English army at Patay, smashing the myth of English invincibility. During the next two months Joan's army recaptured Troyes, Châlons and Rheims. On 16 July the Dauphin was crowned Charles VII at Rheims. Less than a year later, on 23 May 1430, Joan was captured by the Burgundians and handed over to the English. She was tried by a religious court and a week later burned at the stake as a heretic. Her example continued to inspire French resistance to the English invaders, and so was born the legend of Joan of Arc. Text by David Nicolle with illustrations by Graham Turner.

    Contents
  • Background to the Campaign
  • Chronology
  • Opposing Commanders
    The French
    Joan of Arc
    Richemont
    Dunois
    La Hire
    De Xantrailles
    Alençon

    The English
    Sir William Glasdale
    Earl of Suffolk
    Talbot
    Fastolf

  • Opposing Armies
  • Opposing Plans
  • The Campaign
    The Breaking of the Siege of Orleans
    English Relieving Army Defeated at Patay
  • Aftermath
  • Bibliography
  • The Battlefield Today
  • Index

 

Osprey Campaign


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