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Exploring a medieval muster roll

In this task, you will explore and interpret a medieval muster roll from the Agincourt campaign.

In this task, you can see two photos of an original medieval document (two portions of the top section). They show a list of men-at-arms (called esquires) and archers that were mustered in the retinue of Sir Thomas Erpingham on Southampton Heath on 13 July 1415. Sir Thomas Erpingham, was the commander of the King’s archers at Agincourt.

Look at these two images of the muster roll E101/44/30. They show two portions of the top section.

Part of muster roll E101/44/30, pt 3 (portion 1) © The National Archives

Part of muster roll E101/44/30, pt 3 (portion 1) © The National Archives

Part of muster roll E101/44/30, pt 3 (portion 2) © The National Archives

Part of muster roll E101/44/30, pt 3 (portion 2) © The National Archives

What is the evidence that the names of these men were checked off at the muster?

Can you make out the names of the soldiers? Tell us what you make of the choice of first names in this period? Which is the most common first name?

Share your ideas in the comments area.

Note: these names are generally given in the Latin form and are abbreviated. For instance the first name is: Tomas Erpynghm (Thomas Erpingham)

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This article is from the free online course:

Agincourt 1415: Myth and Reality

University of Southampton

Course highlights Get a taste of this course before you join: