MHM 61 – October 2015

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The October 2015 issue of Military History Monthly, the leading British military history magazine, is on sale now.


To mark the 600th anniversary, our special feature this month focuses on the game-changing battle and victory of ‘the middling sort’ at Agincourt in 1415.

– Background
– Timeline
– The battle
– Battle map


Gas!: Loos, 1915

Steve Roberts describes the arguments surrounding the first British chemical attack, a century ago this month.

Tank Island: Britain’s defence, 1940

Mike Relph explores the impact of the threat of Nazi invasion on the Wiltshire market town of Marlborough.

The defence of Camerone: the French Foreign Legion’s finest hour

Robin Smith reports on the nine-hour last stand at a remote Mexican hamlet in 1863.

Also in this issue: Behind the Image, Conflict Scientists, War Culture, War on Film, Book Reviews, Museum, Listings, Briefing Room, and Competitions

From the editor

Neil Faulkner, Editor

This has been a year of anniversaries: Gallipoli, Waterloo, Agincourt. This issue we mark Henry V’s great victory on 25 October 1415, when a heavily outnumbered English army formed mainly of archers smashed a traditional French feudal array.

Military systems are embedded in the social orders they serve. The soldiers raised reflect the society from which they are recruited.

The victors of Agincourt – the English longbowmen (recent research suggests they were predominantly English rather than Welsh) – were recruited from a social class that hardly existed in France: the yeomanry – prosperous, independent, enterprising free peasants.

The English kings – unlike the French – were therefore able to raise first-class infantry: men with a stake in society and a will to train hard and fight well. And almost always – from Hastings to Waterloo – if infantry have the morale to stand firm, they will stop a mounted charge.

So it was at Agincourt – one of a succession of 14thand 15th-century battles in which solid ‘middling sort’ infantry triumphed over their social superiors, and heralded the end of the medieval world and the beginning of the modern.

Also in this issue, Robin Smith describes the French Foreign Legion’s epic defence of Camerone in 1863, Steve Roberts recalls the first British use of poison gas at Loos in 1915, and Mike Relph analyses the anti-invasion defences of Second World War England.

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