Hundred Years War

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1346 Aug 26

Battle of Crécy

Crécy-en-Ponthieu, France

Once the French withdrew, Edward marched the 9 miles (14 km) to Crécy-en-Ponthieu where he prepared a defensive position. The French had been so confident that the English could not breach the Somme line that they had not denuded the area, and the countryside was rich in food and loot. So the English were able to resupply, Noyelles-sur-Mer and Le Crotoy in particular yielding large stores of food, which were looted and the towns then burnt.

During a brief archery duel a large force of French mercenary crossbowmen was routed by Welsh and English longbowmen. The French then launched a series of cavalry charges by their mounted knights. By the time the French charges reached the English men-at-arms, who had dismounted for the battle, they had lost much of their impetus. The ensuing hand-to-hand combat was described as "murderous, without pity, cruel, and very horrible." The French charges continued late into the night, all with the same result: fierce fighting followed by a French repulse.

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Last Updated: Tue Mar 14 2023