Battle of Cocherel
The battles of Cocherel takes place the May 16th 1364 between Charles V of France whose army is ordered by Bertrand of Guesclin and Charles II of Navarre whose troops are under the orders of the Captal de Buch (Jean de Grailly) as well as English archers under Blancbourg and Joüel and of the road such as Arnaud-Amanieu d' Albret.
- For the Anglo-Navarreses: 6 000 men including approximately three hundred archers.
- For of Guesclin: Burgundian knights (of which Jean of Vienna), the Breton ones and Gascons equipped with shortened, handy lances for the close combat. These men received as principal instruction that to get busy to avoid being in liaison with the English archers whose reputation was not any more to make.
First stepsStarting from its possessions Normans, Charles the Bad had initiated a blockade of Paris. In reaction Charles V requires of Of Guesclin to release the Seine.
The May 14th 1364 with Évreux, the captal of Buch joins together all the Navarrese garrisons at its disposal in order to go against the Breton one. This last left the May 11th Rouen with a troop of equivalent size.
Rather than to cut the road to its adversary, the captal, arrived on May 15th at Cocherel, lays out its troops according to the English strategy on a close eminence which it makes strengthen. It is about the hill of the Wood of Bramble to 2 km of the borough.
While the Anglo-Navarreses strengthen themselves, the troops of Guesclin arrive at Cocherel and lay out their camping knowing that the Navarreses will prefer to hold reduces to them strengthened to try a knack.
Weather conditionsFull sun. The Anglo-Navarreses benefit from the shade of the wood of Bramble, the French must be made carry water of the Eure which crosses Cocherel.
Battle orderThe Anglo-Navarreses are laid out into three Bataillon S: the first with the English and the archers, with the orders of Jean Joüel, the second carried out by Jean de Grailly and the third by Bascon known as the bastard one of Mareuil . The standard of the captal, not of rallying is laid out close of a thorny bush with a guard to 60 men.
The French are divided into three battalions and a reserve: of Guesclin that orders which deals with Jean de Grailly; the count d' Auxerre, Jean III of Châlon, orders the second and Arnaud de Cervole known as the archpriest , the third. To simulate a more important army, of Guesclin makes place many additional standards. Its rear-guard is composed primarily of Gascons with for mission of taking the adversary with reverse and of removing its standards to him.
The battleThe morning occurs in negotiations between the two camps and inside even from each one of them (tactical choices, war cry, etc). The captal of Buch makes accept the French whom a reinforcement must reach him, some 1500 additional men, to incite the French to launch out to the attack. Indeed the Anglo-Navarreses make a point of remaining on their positions and the French, informed preceding defeats (battles of Poitiers), know that a load would be unfavourable for them.
On Guesclin, arrived around 15:00, in its turn feinter decides. With the sound of the trumpets, its own battalion starts to be withdrawn behind from the Eure - however that the two other battalions remain vis-a-vis the Anglo-Navarreses. At this time, Jean Jouel, believer with a retirement on behalf of his adversary, decide to make charge his men. Whereas English descends with any pace the hill where they were posted, of Guesclin made make volte-face with its men. In little time, the troop of Jouel is quickly submerged by the three French battalions and its archers, too being close to the enemy, cannot intervene any more whereas the combat is with the body-with-body.
A group of thirty Gascon knights of the rear-guard, after having circumvented the device anglo-Navarrese, captures the captal and its standard.
Baudouin, governor of Lille, large Master of the Principal rafters of France is killed just as Bascon de Mareuil and Jean Joüel. Deprived of their chiefs, the Anglo-Navarreses end up beating a retreat.
Pierre de Sacquenville is made prisoner; he is decapitated with Rouen on order of Charles V.
- account by Froissard
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