We few, we happy few, we band of brothers

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by TheRed, Oct 25, 2018.

  1. TheRed

    TheRed Supporter! Supporter

    October 25th is the feast of Saints Crispin Crispinian, the largely forgotten patron saints of cobblers and tanners. They were martyred during the reign of Diocletian in 285 or 286. What makes the 25th of October stand out is an event that took place 1130 years later. On October 25th, 1415 the outnumbered and sick army of Henry V was blocked in their retreat to the city of Calais by a numerically superior French army. That morning Henry addressed his army before the battle, and the English army thereafter won a crushing victory. While Henry's speech was chronicled by a number of contemporary Burgundian and French sources it has been the work of a fellow Englishman that immortalized his speech.

    William Shakespeare wrote his play Henry V in around 1600. In Act IV Henry delivers his speech before the battle. It is one of the most powerful and moving set of lines Shakespeare wrote.

    And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by,
    From this day to the ending of the world,
    But we in it shall be rememberèd—
    We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
    For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
    Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
    This day shall gentle his condition;
    And gentlemen in England now a-bed
    Shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here,
    And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
    That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.

    I will include a groat of Henry V, which I have posted before. Feel free to add your English and French coins.
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  3. chrsmat71

    chrsmat71 I LIKE TURTLES!

    This guy is on my list for sure! I don't really have a coin that works, so here is another book plug!


    I know some of you like Bernard Cornwell books. Fun, fast paced historical fiction of the battle and the campaign to a lesser extent.

    Oh man, I didn't know there was a saint of cobblers and Tanners! Weird combo, but cool!

  4. Orfew

    Orfew Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus

    I really like your groat and Henry V is my favourite play of Shakespeare. Kenneth Branagh gives a very stirring rendition of that speech in his version of Henry V.

    Here is my penny of Henry V.

    henry V.jpg
  5. Nyatii

    Nyatii I like running w/scissors. Makes me feel dangerous

    One of my very favorites!
  6. Sealgair

    Sealgair Member

    And also the source of a quotation I use very frequently: “Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown.”
    Theodosius and TheRed like this.
  7. John Anthony

    John Anthony Ultracrepidarian Supporter Dealer

    Nice write-up, nice coins, and I loved the clip from Shakespeare's Henry V. Donuts for everyone!

  8. TheRed

    TheRed Supporter! Supporter

    That is a great penny of Henry @Orfew with a real strong strike for the York mint.

    Thanks for the book recommendation @chrsmat71 I'll have to pick up a used copy and add out to my to-read pile.
    Orfew likes this.
  9. alde

    alde Always Learning

    Here's a French coin of the appropriate time frame (14th-15th century). It's a silver Gross of St. Stephen praying before Manus Deum from Metz.
    France Metz AR Gross St Stephen Manus Deum 14th to 15th C.jpg
  10. Theodosius

    Theodosius Fine Style Seeker

    Great coin and historical and literary tie in!

    Makes me want to collect this series.

  11. randygeki

    randygeki Coin Collector

  12. panzerman

    panzerman Well-Known Member

    I am surprised that the King put up with his mint master/ engraver! The effigy on the penny looks more like "curly" from the "Three Stooges". Henry V looked neither like Kenneth Branagh or the coin. King_Henry_V_from_NPG.jpg
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