The Writer’s Guide to Blacksmithing Basics

Since much of fantasy was inspired by the Middle Ages, it makes sense that many novels include blacksmiths. Of course, in a magical setting, blacksmiths can be elevated from hammering out horseshoes to crafting magic rings or enchanted blades. It is also common to see them highlighted in visual medium during the big “gearing up” scenes.

Unfortunately, a lot of misinformation about blacksmithing is repeated in literature. In this series, I will break down the basics, telling the history, explaining the metals, and busting the myths of blacksmithing.

As always, magic is the exception to the rule. Because magic.

Forge and Tools

A blacksmith’s workspace is a forge or smithy. It commonly had a roof and possibly some walls. The roof was vital for shade, providing enough darkness to easily see the color of the metal. It also kept off the sun and rain. In most climates, walls were not needed since the forge provided enough heat.

The hearth where the blacksmith heats metal is also called the forge. Throughout most of history, coal was burned, although wood was also used, and modern smiths employ propane. The fire is stoked with a bellow, which blows air into the base. The modern equivalent is a blower, either hand cranked or electric.

Hot metal is carried and gripped using tongs and hammers of various weights are used to shape it. The anvil is the common work surface. I will do a Deep Dive into them in my next article.

Blacksmiths commonly wear leather aprons to protect themselves from the heat and dirt.

A 17th century blacksmith at his forge. Image source.

Cold and Hot Forging

The most familiar type is hot forging, in which a smith heats a piece in the forge and works it while it is hot. The metal is nestled into the coals to heat before being moved to the anvil. Temperature and malleability of the metal can be determined by the color, starting red, turning orange, then yellow and last, white. Most forging happens when the metal is bright yellow-orange.

Cold forging involves no heat, only hammering. Copper and bronze can only be hardened by working it cold for a long period.

Hot forging. Image source.

Forging Techniques

There are seven basic techniques to achieve the desired shape.

Drawing – Probably the most common blacksmithing operation, drawing out causes the billet to become thinner and longer. The piece can also become wider.

Bending – Metal can be bent to create either angles or curves. The anvil is an important tool when bending metal.

Upsetting – The technique causes the metal to become thicker on one end by shortening the other side. Upsetting can be performed by hammering on either the hot or cold side.

Punching – This operation produces a hole in the metal. A punch, a type of chisel with a rounded tapering head would be rested against the hot metal and hammered through. Widening the hole is called drifting and uses a series of increasingly larger punches. If a split is desired, a chisel is used. It is also used to cut the metal.

Swaging – This technique involves forcing either hot or cold metal through a die to produce shapes too intricate to make with a hammer alone.

Welding – Using this process, two pieces of metal are joined. To achieve this, the pieces must be clean and free of forge scale. Then the metal is heated until it is a bright yellow or white. The smith must be careful not to overheat the metal or it will burn or melt. Flux is used to carry scale out of the weld and protect the metal from burning. Flux is typically powdered borax, silica sand, or a mixture of the two. The two pieces are hammered together until a weld forms, often causing a lot of sparks.

Forge welding. Image source.

Heat Treating and Quenching

Heat treating is a method to harden or soften metal. There are several techniques including annealing, case hardening, precipitation strengthening, tempering, carburizing, and normalizing. These methods can be applied to the entire piece or portions of it.

The most well-known heat treatment method, and commonly, the last step in the forging process is quenching. The metal is heated to between 1,500 and 1,650° F (815-900°C) then submerged in water or oil, rapidly cooling it. This hardens the metal. However, the process is incredibly stressful to the metal, which can warp, crack or break.

Quenching. Image source.

Finishing

After hardening, the piece is brushed and filed to remove burrs and sharp edges. The rest of the finish process depends on what the item is, such as sharpening and attaching a handle on knives and swords.


I hope this was helpful. Let me know if you have questions or suggestions by using the Contact Me form on my website or by writing a comment. I post every Friday and would be grateful if you would share my content.

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The Writer’s Guide to Medieval Army Logistics

Raising an army and learning how to deploy it tactically will only get your protagonist so far. To keep your army in the fight, he or she will have to supply it. This can be a challenge, especially in a pre-industrial world without automobiles, trains, or airplanes. History again can provide us with a wealth of inspiration.

As always, magic is the exception to the rule. Because magic.

Equipping an Army

For an army to be effective, it must be equipped with weapons and armor. All modern standing armies provide their soldiers with everything, including weapons, equipment, and clothing. But throughout most of the ancient and medieval periods, soldiers were required to provide their own clothing, weapons, armor, and even food. The Romans were a notable exception. Under the Visigoth legal code (circa 680), soldiers were expected to bring their own armor and shields. In a letter, Charlemagne recorded that horsemen must provide “a shield, lance, sword, dagger, bow, and quivers with arrows.” [1] A law passed in 1252 required all Englishmen aged 15 to 60 to own a bow and arrows. It was mandatory for knights going on crusade to bring a string of horses.

Soldiers could also buy what they needed from merchants and craftsmen along the way or at their destination. [2] Goods and services included shoeing for their horses and metal, wood, and leather goods. During the First War of Scottish Independence, which began in 1296, sheriffs in Scotland and Wales would forcefully buy food, horses, and carts from merchants, paying low prices. The goods were transported to the border where English conscripts could purchase them. In the early 1300s, the English had a system where merchants were asked to meet the army. However, the merchants often used this an opportunity to charge outrageous prices. [3]

Of course, looting and pillaging were another way for soldiers to acquire goods. It was common during the Middle Ages for armies to loot villages and cities they captured and to pillage the countryside while they were on the march.

A 14th century depiction of soldiers looting a house. Image source.

Feeding an Army

As the saying goes, “an army marches on its stomach.” Yet most ancient and medieval armies required their soldiers to feed themselves. For example, the Carolingians in the 8th century required their soldiers to bring enough food for three months. If they still needed them after their food ran out, they would provide it for free. Other countries would provide food, but it was instead of wages. [4] Saxon soldiers during the German civil war in the 1070s were required to bring enough supplies for the entire campaign. [5] Food was commonly transported in carts or on pack animals. Herds of cattle were also used to provide fresh meat. According to Bernard Bachrach in “Military Logistics: Carrying Food Supplies,” a herd of 1,000 cattle could feed an army of 14,000 for roughly ten days. [6]

Food could also be bought from local merchants or farmers, or foraged or looted from the countryside.

Napoleon eating soldier’s rations. Image source.

The Baggage Train

The baggage train was a civilian contingent that transported the supplies that the soldiers were not carrying themselves. Members of the train could also provide goods and services to the army, including blacksmiths, cobblers, laundresses, and prostitutes. Often medical personnel traveled with the baggage train as well as the wives and children of the soldiers. The train was often vulnerable, such as when the French attacked the English baggage train at the battle of Agincourt.

A baggage train on the Bayeux Tapestry transporting weapons, chainmail, and wine. Image source.

Campaign Season

Although modern armies fight year-round, ancient and medieval armies only fought during the campaign season, which started in spring and ended in autumn. This ensured that the fields would still be planted and harvested, preventing starvation. It provided logistical challenges since armies had to be transported to the battlefield in the spring and home again in the autumn. This was especially challenging if it involved distance or an ocean journey, such as crossing the English Channel to fight in France. It was also a challenge to commanders when all their soldiers decided they had to go home to harvest the crops.

Even if an army stayed together through the winter, it was unlikely they would do any fighting unless they were in a warm climate. For areas that experienced snow and inclement weather, the army would be idle and had to be housed, warmed, and fed. Unless a reliable supply line existed or the army was camped in an area with plentiful resources, this situation often resulted in a hungry, miserable winter. General George Washington’s winter camp at Valley Forge is a good example.

The battle of Towton, which was fought in a March snowstorm, one of the few medieval battles fought in winter. Image source.

I hope this was helpful. Let me know if you have questions or suggestions by using the Contact Me form on my website or by writing a comment. I post every Friday and would be grateful if you would share my content.

If you want my blog delivered straight to your inbox every month along with exclusive content and giveaways, please sign up for my email list here.

Let’s get writing!

Copyright © 2022 Rebecca Shedd. All rights reserved.

[1] Halsall, Paul. “Medieval Sourcebook: Charlemagne: Summons to Army c.804-11”. sourcebooks.fordham.edu. Retrieved 2020-11-12.
[2] Bachrach, Bernard S.; Bachrach, David S. (2017). “Military Logistics: Arms and Equipment”. Warfare in Medieval Europe c.400-c.1453. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge. ISBN 9781138887664.
[3] Abels, Richard. “War in the Middle Ages: Medieval Logistics – English Experience”. United States Naval Academy. Archived from the original on 13 April 2016. Retrieved 3 October 2017.
[4] Abels, Richard. "War in the Middle Ages: Medieval Logistics – English Experience". United States Naval Academy. Archived from the original on 13 April 2016. Retrieved 3 October 2017.
[5] Bachrach, Bernard S.; Bachrach, David S. (2017). "Military Logistics: Supplies Carried by Militia Troops". Warfare in Medieval Europe c.400-c.1453. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge. ISBN 9781138887664.
[6] Bachrach, Bernard S.; Bachrach, David S. (2017). "Military Logistics: Carrying Food Supplies". Warfare in Medieval Europe c.400-c.1453. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge. ISBN 9781138887664.

Writer’s Deep Dive: The Battle of Hastings

For our third and final historical battle, I am covering the Battle of Hastings. This engagement shows how an army can start in a dominate position and still lose.

Now, let’s dive in!

The Basics

The battle of Hastings was fought on October 14th, 1066 between the Anglo-Saxon King Harold Godwinson and the invading Norman-French William, Duke of Normandy. The previous king of England, Edward the Confessor, had died on January 5th, 1066, leaving no heir. [1]

Harold was crowned king of England on January 6th, 1066 and immediately braced for a challenge from William. He raised the fyrd across England. [2] The fyrd was a system of obligation and service, a variation of “calling vassals” or “raising the banners,” as George R. R. Martin puts it in A Song of Ice and Fire. To read more about this method of raising an army, please see my Writer’s Guide Raising a Medieval Army. The entire national fyrd had only been raised three times in the previous nineteen years. [3] The fyrd was supplemented by the king’s personal soldiers, known as housecarls. Several nobles also had housecarls. Most of these forces fought on foot and the English had few archers.

Harold being crowned king of England. Bayeux Tapestry. Image source.

Harold was surprised by an invasion by the Norwegian King Harald Hardrada and his own brother, Tostig, in the north. He defeated them at the Battle of Stanford Bridge on September 25th, 1066 after an impressive forced march. William landed his forces from France at Pevensey on September 28th, 1066, and Harold had to race his army south to confront them. Unfortunately, we are not certain of the size of each army since the contemporary accounts vary widely. [4] Half of Williams’ forces were foot soldiers, the other half equal numbers of cavalry and archers. [6]

Harold tried to surprise the Normans but was spotted by William’s scouts. The English took up a defensive position at the top of Senlac Hill, with their flanks protected by woods. They formed a long shield wall. The duke led his army out of the castle he had hastily constructed in the ruins of a Roman fort. [5] He divided his army into three groups, with archers in the front ranks and foot soldiers behind with the cavalry held back in reserve. [7]

The Norman knights charging the English shield wall.
“Stand fast! Stand fast!” The Battle of Hastings, 1966 by Kenneth M. Setton. Image source.

William began the battle with volleys of arrows from his archers. However, the steep uphill angle caused most of the arrows to either bounce off the English shields or fly harmlessly over their heads. [8] They also quickly went through their supply of arrows and since there were few archers among Harold’s army, they couldn’t gather and reuse English arrows. [9]

The Norman spearmen attacked next but were hampered by the steep slope and pummeled by spears, axes, and stones. William sent the cavalry next but they also had little effect. The Normans began retreating and a rumor flew through the ranks that William had been killed. The duke had to remove his helmet and ride around his forces to prove that he still lived. [10] Several of the English pursued the retreating Normans and were cut off from the shield wall and killed.

William removing his helmet to show his men he still lived. Image source.

William sent his cavalry against the English line again in the afternoon. They charged and then withdrew twice, drawing English soldiers into pursuit, thinning the line. [11] Harold was killed late in the battle and the English line collapsed with many soldiers fleeing. The soldiers of the royal household, however, defended Harold’s body to the last man. [12]

In some accounts, Harold was killed by an arrow to the eye. Image source.

The Write Angle

Harold nearly pulled off one of the greatest victories in English history. He marched his army from London to York in four days to confront Harald Hardrada and Tostig only to turn around and march it back to confront William. If the English had held their shield wall and not been baited into pursuing the Normans, it’s possible they could have won the battle of Hastings. They also had a moment to turn the tide when the Normans thought that William had been killed but didn’t take advantage of it.

Hastings proves that battles can hinge on small things and that an army can go from winning to loosing in a moment. As a writer, this battle can be such a source of inspiration in crafting events that organically swing from victory to defeat and back again.


I hope this was helpful. Let me know if you have questions or suggestions by using the Contact Me form on my website or by writing a comment. I post every Friday and would be grateful if you would share my content.

If you want my blog delivered straight to your inbox every month along with exclusive content and giveaways, please sign up for my email list here.

Let’s get writing!

Copyright © 2022 Rebecca Shedd. All rights reserved.

[1] Higham Death of Anglo-Saxon England pp. 167–181
[2] Nicolle Medieval Warfare Sourcebook pp. 69–71
[3] Marren 1066 pp. 55–57
[4] Gravett Hastings pp. 20–21
[5] Lawson Battle of Hastings pp. 180–182
[6] Gravett Hastings p. 27
[7] Bennett Campaigns of the Norman Conquest p. 41
[8] Bennett Campaigns of the Norman Conquest p. 41
[9] Gravett Hastings pp. 65–67
[10] Gravett Hastings p. 68
[11] Marren 1066 p. 130
[12] Gravett Hastings pp. 76–78

The Writer’s Guide to Medieval Army Tactics

Now that your protagonist has raised an army, he or she must learn how best to deploy it. There have been many tactics used throughout history to win battles, and the list below is not exhaustive. Some tactics can be used by all the types of soldiers I covered in my The Writer’s Guide to Medieval Armies. This is not even including magic, which could massively change battlefield dynamics.

Terrain

Where an army is set up on the terrain can have a tremendous impact on their chances of victory. Examples include holding the high ground, so your enemies are exhausted by the climb, and narrowing the field of battle. Natural obstacles such as rivers, forests, and cliffs can protect an army’s flank and limit the directions an enemy can approach from. I recommend reading my Deep Dives in the battles of Agincourt and Crecy because they are wonderful examples of how terrain can be used to your advantage.

Using the high ground. Image source.

Deployment of Forces

How an army is deployed also plays a big role. Several TV shows and movies show big blocks of one type of soldier, such as cavalry or infantry. But it was common during the Middle Ages to mix and match. For example, infantry can be placed in between formations of archers to protect them if they are attacked.

Scouting was critical when placing forces. Commanders relied on their scouts to inform them of the terrain and other pieces of intelligence so they could plan out their deployment.

How an army is deployed could mean the difference between victory and defeat. Image source.

General Tactics

The first basic tactic used in the ancient world was forming a line. This formation was enhanced using shields and was employed by the ancient Romans, the Vikings, and modern riot police. It usually relied on having the bigger army.

A tactic used against the line formation was the concentrated center where an army would force a gap through the center of the enemy’s line. This allowed reinforcements to surge through and get to the sides and back, a tactic known as flanking.

A variation of this tactic is to conceal a unit on your flank and have them swing around to the side of the enemy once they have engaged. As enemy units are neutralized, it frees up soldiers to continue enveloping the enemy.

A favorite tactic of mine is the inverted wedge, which was used by Hannibal at the battle of Cannae in 216 BC. As the Romans attacked the center of his line, Hannibal’s forces fell back, pulling the Romans further in which Hannibal’s forced wrapped around them.

Another family of tactics involved goading your enemy into chasing after you. This was achieved by feigning a retreat or by performing a series of hit-and-run maneuvers. The enemy formations will probably lose cohesion during the chase, especially if it is over rough terrain. They can also break up as sections move faster than others.

The bottleneck was an effective tactic if an army was outnumbered. They would pick a location where the terrain narrowed, limiting how many of the enemy soldiers could engage them. This tactic was used by the Spartans in the battle of Thermopylae and William Wallace at the battle of Sterling Bridge.

The deployment of forces at the battle of Cannae. The center of Hannibal’s line fell back while the flanks enveloped them. Image source.

Infantry Tactics

Since infantry moved more slowly than cavalry and were also vulnerable to charges by them, several tactics were developed to minimize their vulnerability. One of these was the schiltron, a compact formation, usually round or rectilinear, with the pikes and other polearms pointing outward at all angles. It was used by Robert the Bruce and William Wallace in their battles against the English. Variations used in later periods included the hedgehog and were used as late as the Battle of Waterloo in 1815, since they were incredibly effective against cavalry charges.

The use of the schiltron formation at the battle of Falkirk. Image source.

Cavalry Tactics

Tactics for cavalry depended on the type of horsemen. Light cavalry usually focused on hit-and-run tactics and used light weapons or bows. Heavy cavalry were the tanks of their day and were used to smash through infantry and archery formations. Often, they were deployed in three divisions, with the first creating a gap in the line and the following ones flooding through to flank.

Ranged Tactics

As I’ve shown in my Deep Dives into the battles of Agincourt and Crecy, archers could win battles if deployed correctly. One tactic was to place them at a distance from the enemy, usually behind cover, such as sharpened stakes pounded into the ground. If the enemy could be drawn into charging their position, they would unleash deadly volleys of arrows that would decimate their ranks before they even reached the archer’s line.

Another tactic was putting archers on the high ground, which slowed attackers and gave them greater range. This tactic was used successfully in the battles of Crecy.

A third tactic was drawing the enemy into a crossfire, where archers fired from multiple sides. It was commonly used in ambushes.

Archers shooting at charging cavalry. Image source.

I hope this was helpful. Let me know if you have questions or suggestions by using the Contact Me form on my website or by writing a comment. I post every Friday and would be grateful if you would share my content.

If you want my blog delivered straight to your inbox every month along with exclusive content and giveaways, please sign up for my email list here.

Let’s get writing!

Copyright © 2022 Rebecca Shedd. All rights reserved.

Writer’s Deep Dive: The Battle of Crécy

Today I am covering a battle in which an outnumbered force on the run was pitted against a superior enemy. I hope it will give you inspiration when you throw your protagonist and their scrappy group of followers against a larger force.

Now, let’s dive in!

The Basics

The battle of Crécy was fought at the beginning of the Hundred Years’ War. The English army, led by King Edward III and accompanied by his heir, Edward the Black Prince, landed on the Cotentin Peninsula on July 12th, 1346. Their landing took the French completely by surprise. They began cutting a swath southwest through the fertile region. [1] Their biggest prize was Caen, which they looted for five days.

The English had picked an ideal time to invade. The main French army was committed to the siege of Aiguillon, in the southwest. Plus, the French treasury was almost empty. The English army carved a path of destruction to within two miles of Paris.

King Philip VI of France ordered every able-bodied man into his service and showed up on July 31st at Rouen to lead them personally. [2] On his orders, the French carried out a scorched earth tactic, removing or destroying all sources of food in the surrounding countryside. This forced the English to spread out to forage. Phillip then hemmed them into an area that had been stripped of all food. However, King Edward broke his army out and choose a defensive position at Crécy-en-Ponthieu to face the pursuing French. [3] He had between 7,000 and 15,000 soldiers against a French force that number between 20,000 and 30,000.

Edward III’s route through France. Image source.

While he waited, King Edward had his army dig pits and ditches, then carefully arrayed them on a sloping hillside. His flanks were protected by the towns of Wadicourt on his right and Crécy on his left, which stood on the banks of the River Maye.[4] The other advantage they held was the 5,000 archers armed with English longbows. Many of them were shooting arrows tipped with bodkins, pointed thin arrowheads that could penetrate plate armor, especially at close range. Contemporary sources record arrows frequently piercing armor. [5] These archers were also shooting between ten to twelve arrows in a minute.

The placement of forces. Image source.

The French advanced in the afternoon, displaying their sacred banner, known as the oriflamme, which indicated that no prisoners would be taken. [6] A sudden heavy downpour started. The French brought out their Genoese crossbowmen, but they had a shorter range and slower rate of fire than the English archers. Also, the rain caused their strings to stretch since they couldn’t unstring their crossbows like the English could unstring their longbows. They shot off a few half-hearted volleys before retreating. Many were cut down by the French for cowardice. [7]

A 15th century painting of the English longbowmen facing the Genoese crossbowmen. My favorite detail is the man in the bottom left corner running away with an arrow in his bottom. Image source.

The French cavalry charged, but it was disorganized, and uphill on muddy ground pocked with pits. [8] Plus, they were under withering fire from the English archers, many of whom targeted the horses rather than the well-armored knights. The charge disintegrated as riders were thrown from dead or wounded mounts and injured horses ran panicked across the battlefield. The French who reached the English line were exhausted and easily cut down by the men-at-arms. However, the French mounted charge after charge, late into the night. King Philip had two horses killed from beneath him and took an arrow to the jaw. [9] The bearer of the oriflamme was wounded and abandoned the banner. [10] When fresh French forces arrived in the morning, they were routed and chased for miles by the English. [11]

The losses were incredibly lopsided, with the French taking significant causalities, numbering between 2,000 to 4,000. The English, however, lost roughly three hundred men. [12] King Edward marched his army to Calais, which he captured after a siege of eleven months. The English would hold the port for the next two hundred years, and it provided them with a base of operations in France that gave them an advantage throughout the rest of the war. [13]

Edward III counting the dead after the battle. Image source.

The Write Angle

The battle of Crécy proves that a smaller force can defeat a larger one, even when behind enemy lines. The superb use of terrain, tactics, and battlefield preparation prove to be an enormous advantage to the English. They might not have been as successful if they had not picked the ground as carefully.

The other major advantage was the use of the longbow, a weapon that was unique to the English. The French tried using the Genoese crossbowmen to counter the longbowmen, but they were outmatched in rate of fire and range. Plus, it is incredibly hard to unstring a crossbow. The rain caused the strings to stretch, reducing their range. The English, however, could unstring their longbows easily and store the strings in oiled pouches until they were needed, preventing them from stretching and preserving their power.

One of the biggest reasons the French lost this battle was because they were in too much of a hurry and continued to mount disastrous charge after disastrous charge. A chronicler of the period put it best: “By haste and disorganization were the French destroyed.” [14]


I hope this was helpful. Let me know if you have questions or suggestions by using the Contact Me form on my website or by writing a comment. I post every Friday and would be grateful if you would share my content.

If you want my blog delivered straight to your inbox every month along with exclusive content and giveaways, please sign up for my email list here.

Let’s get writing!

Copyright © 2022 Rebecca Shedd. All rights reserved.

[1] Rodger, N.A.M. (2004). The Safeguard of the Sea. London: Penguin. ISBN 978-0140297249.
[2] Sumption, Jonathan (1990). The Hundred Years War 1: Trial by Battle. London: Faber & Faber. ISBN 978-0-571-13895-1.
[3] Burne, Alfred (1999) [1955]. The Crécy War. Ware, Hertfordshire: Wordsworth Editions. ISBN 978-1840222104.
[4] DeVries, Kelly (1998) [1996]. Infantry Warfare in the Early Fourteenth Century. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Boydell Press. ISBN 978-0-85115-567-8.
[5] Rogers, Clifford (1998). "The Efficacy of the English Longbow: A Reply to Kelly DeVries" (PDF). War in History. 5 (2): 233–242. doi:10.1177/096834459800500205. S2CID 161286935. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 February 2019. Retrieved 22 October 2018.
[6] DeVries, Kelly (1998) [1996]. Infantry Warfare in the Early Fourteenth Century. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Boydell Press. ISBN 978-0-85115-567-8.
[7] DeVries, Kelly (2015). "The Implications of the Anonimo Romano Account of the Battle of Crécy". In Gregory I. Halfond (ed.). The Medieval Way of War: Studies in Medieval Military History in Honor of Bernard S. Bachrach. London: Routledge (published 5 March 2015). pp. 309–322. ISBN 978-1472419583.
[8] Bennett, Matthew (1994). "The Development of Battle Tactics in the Hundred Years War". In Anne Curry & Michael Hughes (eds.). Arms, Armies and Fortifications in the Hundred Years War. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Boydell Press. pp. 1–20. ISBN 978-0851153650.
[9] Rogers, Clifford (1998). "The Efficacy of the English Longbow: A Reply to Kelly DeVries" (PDF). War in History. 5 (2): 233–242. doi:10.1177/096834459800500205. S2CID 161286935. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 February 2019. Retrieved 22 October 2018.
[10] Livingstone, Marilyn & Witzel, Morgen (2004). The Road to Crécy: The English Invasion of France, 1346. London: Routledge (published 19 November 2004). ISBN 978-0582784208.
[11] DeVries, Kelly (1998) [1996]. Infantry Warfare in the Early Fourteenth Century. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Boydell Press. ISBN 978-0-85115-567-8.
[12] Ayton, Andrew (2007c) [2005]. "The English Army at Crécy". In Ayton, Andrew & Preston, Philip (eds.). The Battle of Crécy, 1346. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Boydell Press. pp. 159–251. ISBN 978-1843831150.
[13] Burne, Alfred (1999) [1955]. The Crécy War. Ware, Hertfordshire: Wordsworth Editions. ISBN 978-1840222104.
[14] Schnerb, Bertrand (2007) [2005]. "Vassals, Allies and Mercenaries: the French Army before and after 1346". In Ayton, Andrew; Preston, Philip (eds.). The Battle of Crécy, 1346. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Boydell Press. pp. 265–272. ISBN 978-1843831150.