The Auld Alliance

I realise, of course, that, in the course of the next week,  others might well offer gratuitous crowing about a certain event, but, in the interests of fairness, balance and typical Scottish impartiality, I just feel the need to tell you all what actually happened at Orleans in May 1429. Major Scottish victory against the forces of darkness/England, by the way.

We are, of course, in the third phase of the Hundred Years’ War at that time. Your boy Henry V,  (Olivier or Branagh equally good, in my opinion) had seriously stuffed the Frogs at Agincourt in 1415. The French did what they do best – rolled over and gave in.

Couple of things saved them. Henry and his son both popped their clogs prematurely. In addition, an army of Scots arrived to show the benighted garlic-eaters how to fight. Stuffed the Southrons severely at the battle of Bauge in 1421 and saved France from being completely taken over by the AS.  The Jocks got gubbed themselves a few times themselves over the next few years but I personally put that down to the fact that we (sorry Brendano) were on the wrong side and that  we could not trust our ‘ally’ to turn up most of the time, let alone actually fight.

Anyhow, and moving on, the French were more gracious in those days and actually thanked and rewarded us for our efforts. John Carmichael of Carmichael, 3rd Baron, who had fought at Bauge, was made Bishop of Orleans and led the defence thereof during the siege. Many of the other defenders of the city  were also Sweaties.

First serious attempt to raise the siege ended in disaster. A Franco/Jock army attacked a  convoy commanded by the Sir John Falstaff which was bringing supplies to the English. The Scots had been been in France for a while by then and were seriously missing simple fare instead of the filthy foreign muck they were having to eat. Driven mad by the sight of barrels of salted fish and oatmeal, they hurled themselves against the English. The French failed to actually fight, as usual, and we (sorry yet again Brendano) lost most of of our army, including the Constable of Scotland. Google it, if you don’t believe me – the battle of the Herrings.

Minor setback. Jeanne d’Arc hove into view and was escorted to Orleans by a loyal band of Scots archers, in the absence of the French who were, as usual, too chicken to front up.

The rest is history.


5 responses to “The Auld Alliance

  1. Don’t normally get involved in the history/political blogs for obvious reasons. I know nothing about…(well maybe a wee bit about 1689/1690)…however…
    Remember to keep up your sleeve a more recent victory over the Sassenachs for the excellent “On This Day” series.

    17 November 1999 (Wembley) – England 0 Scotland 1

    You don’t need to mention to the Southrons that the scorer was the English born Don Hutchison or that it was another glorious failure on our part. Historians do tend to be selective and just select the juicy parts, John.

    A bit gutted that you got gubbed into a blog before me; well done, anyway.

    And Joan of Arc was an absolute classic by OMD.
    Not sure if this will work or not, what the heck, I fall off cliffs all the time.

  2. Agree with the Royalisy about the OMD. Gosh, I’ve not heard it in years. I remember singing it in my head while stamping in time on the ground to stop my feet from freezing.
    Enjoyed the post Mr Mackie, despite the obvious drawback of it not being the promised fifth instalment. But no time to quibble. I shall accept it as an omen of things to come and posted on the eve of my birthday. So I’ll take it as a present.
    But I think by this time the Anglo-Saxons were long out of the frame. We are talking Norman England here I believe.

  3. If only you, Mr Mackie, had taught history at my school in your inimitable style, I might have listened and learned something. 🙂

    The Battle of Herrings indeed.
    Sounds like a subject for a work by Simon Drew.

  4. Hello John. Just to let you know that I have set up a blog at

    and you’d be very welcome to drop in if you wish.

  5. The best Henry V I saw was Adrian Lester at the NT a few years back.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s