The Good Life France Magazine




The Good Life France Magazine brings you the best of France - inspirational and exclusive features, fabulous photos, mouth-watering recipes, tips, guides, ideas and much more...


Published by the award winning team at The Good Life France

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Summer 2022, issue No. 30

Discover captivating Corsica, the island of beauty and glitzy, cinematic Cannes. Explore Antibes, less well known than it's neighbours Nice and Cannes, it's incredibly pretty and authentic, and the Camargue in the south of France where wild white horses and pink flamingoes roam. Come with us to arty Arles, historic Agincourt and Aisne in Picardy - the ancient cradle of France. Meet artisan gin makers in Cognac, discover the prune route of France, fabulous recipes, guides, gorgeous photos, the best tours, what's new in France and delicious recipes - and more...

AGINCOURT revisited

AGINCOURT revisited Words: Gillian Thornton and Janine Marsh 38 | The Good Life France

There are no real winners when two nations fall out, but today we live in an age when wars can rumble on for years and involve countless civilian casualties. So it’s a surreal experience to look over a field where an international conflict – legendary for hundreds of years – was all wrapped up before teatime. The Battle of Agincourt kicked off in heavy rain late in the morning of October 25th 1415, St Crispin’s Day, and by mid-afternoon, the cream of French nobility had been cut down in the mud by the firepower of English archers. The English army, believed to be around 8,500 men, marching to Calais to return home by boat after a campaign in Normandy and led by King Henry V, faced a French army of around 12,000 men. Henry’s army of English soldiers and largely from Wales archers, were already exhausted and suffering from dysentery. Some of them removed their trousers and fought half naked. Many of them kissed the earth of this corner of Pas de Calais in northern France, believing they would be buried in it later that day. Henry V heard Mass, not just once, but three times. The French were led by the Constable of France Charles d’Albret and Marshal Jean II le Meingre (Boucicaut). The battle ‘barely lasted a few hours’ says Ludovic Hiltenbrand, manager of the Centre Azincourt 1415, but it was a decisive victory for the English and became the stuff of legend. The French, wearing heavy armour and bogged down in mud were cut down as armour-piercing arrows with a range of 250 yards were unleashed from the innovative longbows of their enemy. Among the lost was Gallois de Fougières, a Marshall of France, effectively the first recorded gendarme to have died in the line of duty. The uniformed official we know today, the ‘Gendarme’, is a derivative of ‘gens d’armes’, or people with arms (weapons), hence the expression ‘to take up arms.’ Look for Agincourt on the map and you won’t find it. The village is actually called Azincourt, nestled in the lush countryside of The Seven Valleys. The change of spelling is down to a mispronunciation by an English knight when asked by Henry V for the name of the nearby fortress. You can still see the field where the face off took place, most of it now farmland and all of it bordered by quiet country roads – a 4km circuit on foot or by car. In the heart of the village, you’ll find the excellent Centre Azincourt 1415 museum. The Good Life France | 39