Wars and Battles of Early Britain

Red link for War summary. Light Blue for Battles.
Based on Harbottle's Dictionary of Battles, 1904.

Printable version HERE.

Wars of Saxon, Norman, and Plantagenet England
Roman Conquest of Britain 55-84     Battles      
Saxon Conquest of Britain 456-823     Battles      
Danish Invasion of Britain 835-1066     Battles      
Norman Conquests 1066-1106     Battles      
Scottish Wars of Independence 1296-1327     Battles      
Scottish Civil Wars (early) 1054-1455     Battles      
Plantagenet Era Rebellions 1173-1408     Battles      
Anglo French Wars 1119-1214     Battles      
Hundred Years War 1340-1453     Battles      
War of the Roses 1453-1485     Battles      

Wars of the Tudor and Stuart Periods
Wars of Italy 1512-1558     Battles      
Tudor Era Rebellions 1487-1685     Battles      
Tudor Reconquest of Ireland1554-1603    Battles      
Scottish Civil Wars (later) 1513-1679     Battles      
Anglo Spanish Wars 1587-1596     Battles      
English Civil Wars 1639-1651     Battles      
Anglo Dutch Wars 1652-1672     Battles      
Second Anglo-Spanish War1655-1658    Battles      

Roman Conquest of Britain — 55 to 84     to top

Roman conquest of Britain

DateBattle Summary
55 BC  
Battle of Britain (Northern Gaul ) Romans victory
The Romans under Caesar landed in July B.C. 55 off the coast of Briton with 10,000 men, expecting an easy victory. They were met with a significant, but disorganized resistance, and made a difficult landing under fire. After taking hostages, they withdrew, due largely to bad weather.
54 BC  
Battle of Britain (Vercingetorix Rebellion ) Romans victory
The Romans under Caesar landed in August B.C. 54 off Britain with 800 ships, 2000 Cavalry, and five legions. The Briton tribes were now united under Cassivellaunus. Instead of opposing the landing the Britons retreated inland, but Caesar pursued, engaging the united Britons at Thames, and then laying siege to the fortress of Cassivellaunus. After winning all engagements, the Romans took hostages and withdrew.
Battle of Medway   Romans victory
Fought A.D. 43, between the Romans under the Emperor Claudius, and the Britons under Caractacus. The Britons were routed, and Camelodunum, Caractacus' capital, taken.
Battle of Caer Caradoc   Romans victory
Fought A.D. 50, between the Romans under Ostorius, and the Britons under Caratacus. The Britons were strongly entrenched in a high position and showered the Romans with arrows, but the strong armor of the Romans protected them, and the Britons, who could not prevail in hand-to-hand combat, were routed. Caractacus escaped, but was later turned over the Romans in chains, by a Briton Queen who had already submitted.
Battle of the Ordovici   Romans victory
Fought A.D. 50, between the Romans, under Ostorius Scapula, and the Britons, under Caractacus. The Britons occupied the slope of a hill, where they were attacked by the Romans and totally routed. Caractacus fled to the Brigantes, by whom he was surrendered, and sent a captive to Rome.
Battle of Watling street   Romans victory
In the year 61 A.D., Suetonius, with 10,000 legionaries, totally routed an enormous host of Britons under Boadicea, Queen of the Iceni, who had sacked Camelodunum, and taken Londinium and Verulamium. The Britons lost 80,000 killed, and Boadicea took poison on the battlefield.

Saxon Conquest of Britain — 456 to 823     to top

Saxon conquests and wars of the Early Saxon kingdoms in Britain.

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Aylesford (Rise of Kent ) Jutes victory
Fought 456,between the Jutes under Hengist and Horsa, and the Britons under Vortigern. Horsa was slain in the battle, but the Jutes were victorious.
Battle of Crayford (Rise of Kent ) Jutes victory
Fought 456 between the Jutes under Hengest, and the Britons under Vortigern. The Britons were defeated, and driven out of Kent.
Battle of Mons Badonicus (Rise of Northumbria ) Britons victory
Romano-British under Ambrosius Aurelianus decisively defeat the Anglo-Saxon invaders.
Battle of Deorham (Rise of Wessex ) Wessex victory
Fought 577, when Ceawlin, King of Wessex, defeated the Welsh, and extended the borders of Wessex to the Bristol Channel, thus severing the Welsh nation into two parts.
Battle of Fethanleag (Rise of Wessex ) Wessex victory
Fought 584, between the West Saxons, under Ceawlin, and the Britons under Cutha. The Britons were defeated.
Battle of Daegastan (Rise of Northumbria ) Northumbrians victory
Fought 603 between the Northumbrians under Aethelfrith, and the Picts and Scots under Aidan, King of the Scots. Aethelfrith was victorious, and extended his dominions as far as Chester.
Battle of Hatfield Chase (Rise of Northumbria ) Mercia victory
Fought 633, between the Mercians, under Penda, and the Northumbrians, under Edwin. The latter were defeated and Edwin slain.
Battle of Heavenfield (Rise of Northumbria ) Northumbrians victory
Fought 634, between the Anglo-Saxons, under the Bretwalda, Oswald of Northumbria, and the Britons, under Cadwallon. The Britons were totally routed.
Battle of Glen Marreston (Rise of Northumbria ) Scots victory
Fought 638, when the Scots under Donald Bree, King of Dalriada, utterly routed the invading Angles.
Battle of Maserfield (Rise of Northumbria ) Northumbrians victory
Fought 642, between the Northumbrians, under Oswald, and the Mercians, under Penda. The latter were defeated, and Penda slain.
Battle of Nechtan's Mere (Rise of Wessex ) Scots victory
Fought May 20, 685, between the Picts, under Brude, and the Northumbrians, under Ecgfrith. The latter was defeated, and the Picts by their victory freed themselves from the Northumbrian domination.
Battle of Ellandune   Wessex victory
In this battle, fought 823, the Mercians under Beorwulf, were totally routed by the West Saxons under Egbert.

Danish Invasion of Britain — 835 to 1066     to top

Danish Vikings invade Saxon England during the ninth and tenth centuries.

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Hengestesdun (Mauraders ) Saxons victory
Fought 835, when the men of Wessex, under Egbert, totally defeated the Danes and Cornish Britons.
Battle of Ockley (Mauraders ) Saxons victory
Fought 851, between the Danes, and the West Saxons, under Ethelwulf. The Danes were completely defeated.
Battle of Thetford (Mauraders ) Danes victory
Fought 870, between the Danish invaders, and the East Anglians, under Edward. The latter were defeated and Edward killed.
Battle of Englefield (Mauraders ) Saxons victory
Fought 871, the first of the series of battles between the West Saxons and the Danish invaders. The former, under their king, Ethelred, defeated the Danes.
Battle of Reading (Mauraders ) Danes victory
Fought 871, between the Danish invaders, and the West Saxons, under Aethelred and Alfred. The West Saxons, after a stubborn resistance, were defeated and driven from the field with great slaughter.
Battle of Ashdown (Mauraders ) Saxons victory
Fought 871, between the West Saxons under Aethelred and the Danes under Bag Secg and Halfdene. Largely owing to the brilliant leading of Alfred the Great, who commanded one of the wings, the Danes, after a desperate conflict, which lasted throughout the day, were finally put to flight, having lost one of their kings and five jarls.
Battle of Merton (Mauraders ) Danes victory
Fought 871, between the West Saxons, under Alfred, and the Danish invaders. After a severe engagement the Danes were victorious.
Battle of Basing (Mauraders ) Danes victory
A victory of the Danish invaders in 871 over the West Saxons.
Battle of Dollar (Mauraders ) Danes victory
Fought 875, when the Danish invaders under Thorstem totally defeated the men of Alban under Constantine. The Danes subsequently occupied Caithness, Sutherlandshire, Ross and Moray.
Battle of Edington (Mauraders ) Saxons victory
Fought 878, between the West Saxons, under Alfred, and the Danes, under Guthrum. The Danes were totally defeated, and Alfred's victory was followed by the Peace of Wedmore, which lasted for fifteen years.
Battle of Tettenhall (Saxon Consolidation ) Saxons victory
Fought 910, between the Danish invaders, and the West Saxons, under Edward the Elder. The Danes were defeated.
Battle of Wednesfield (Saxon Consolidation ) Saxons victory
Fought in 911, between the Danes and the West Saxons, under Edward the Elder. The Danes were defeated.
Battle of Brunanburh (Saxon Consolidation ) Saxons victory
Fought 937, when Aethelstan defeated with great slaughter the combined armies of Anlaf the Dane, Owen of Cumberland, and Constantine III of Scotland.
Battle of the Bands (Scotland ) Scots victory
Fought 961, between the Scots under their king, Indulph, and the Danish pirates. The Danes were defeated, but Indulph fell in the battle.
Battle of Luncarty (Scotland ) Scots victory
Fought 980, between the Scots, under Kenneth III, and the Danish corsairs, who had landed on the Tay to attack Dunkeld. After a furious hand-to-hand fight the Danes were defeated and driven to their ships.
Battle of Maldon (Saxon Decline ) Danes victory
Fought 991, between the Anglo-Saxons, under Brihtnoth, and the Danes, under Olaf Triggvason and Guthmund. The Anglo-Saxons were completely defeated and Brithnoth slain.
Battle of Kinloss (Scotland ) Danes victory
Fought 1009, between the Danes under Sweyn of Denmark, and the Scots, under Malcolm II. The Danes were besieging Nairne, and Malcolm attempting to raise the siege, they attacked and defeated him after hard fighting, in which Malcolm was wounded.
Battle of Mortlack (Scotland ) Scots victory
Fought 1010, between the Danes, under Sweyn, and the Scots, under Malcolm II. After a long and obstinate engagement the Danes were totally defeated, and forced to flee to their ships. A victory for them on this occasion would probably have given them a permanent lodgment in Scotland, as Malcolm had his last available man in the field.
Battle of Clontarf (Irish Bruce ) Irish victory
Fought April 24, 1014, when the Scandinavian invaders were totally routed by the Irish of Munster, Connaught, Ulster and Meath, under Brian Boru. The Norsemen are said to have lost 6,000 men. Brian Boru and his son fell in the battle.
Battle of Ashingdon (Saxon Decline ) Danes victory
The last of the five battles fought in 1016 between the English under Edmund Ironside and the Danish invaders under Knut. Owing to the treachery of Aedric, who crossed over with the Hereford men in the course of the battle, the English were defeated, and shortly afterwards Knut was proclaimed King of England.
Battle of Pen Selwood (Saxon Decline ) drawn battle victory
Fought 1016, between the English, under Edmund Ironside, and the Danes, under Knut, shortly after Edmund's election as King by the Witanegemot. This was the first of the series of engagements between the two rivals, which ended with the Peace of Olney.
Battle of Sherstone (Saxon Decline ) drawn battle victory
Fought 1016, between Edmund Ironside, and Knut, the rival claimants to the throne. The battle was indecisive.
Battle of Stamford Bridge (Saxon Decline ) Saxons victory
Fought September 25, 1066, between the English, under Harold, and the Norse invaders, under Harold Hardrada and Tostig. The Norsemen were surprised by Harold in their camp, and totally defeated, both Hardrada and Tostig being killed, and the survivors driven to their ships.
Battle of Fulford (Saxon Decline ) Danes victory
Fought 1066, between the Norsemen under Harold Hardrada, King of Norway, the English under Earls Edwin and Morcar. The English were defeated.
Battle of Largs (Scotland ) Scots victory
Fought October 2, 1263, between the Norsemen, under Haco, and the Scots. The Norse fleet of 160 ships was driven ashore off Largs by a violent storm, and many of them wrecked, and Haco landed a force to protect the shipwrecked crews. This force was attacked by the Scots and utterly routed, and Haco was forced to withdraw, and abandon the project of invasion. The only name on the Scottish side which has come down to us as taking part in the battle is that of Sir Pierce Curry.

Norman Wars in Britain—1066 to 1106

William I and his sons Conquer Britain and fight among themselves

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Hastings (Invasion of France ) Normans victory
Fought October 14, 1066, a fortnight after the landing of William the Conqueror. The English, under Harold, fought entirely on the defensive, at first with success, but were at last lured from their position by a feigned flight of the Normans, and were then totally routed. Harold was among the fallen. This battle is also known as the Battle of Senlac.
Battle of Gerberoi (Third Rebellion ) Normans victory
Fought in 1080, between the troops of William the Conqueror, and those of his son Robert, who claimed the Dukedom of Normandy, and was receiving aid from Philip I of France. Robert was defeated and made prisoner, and, obtaining his father's forgiveness, resigned his claim to the Dukedom.
Battle of Alne (Norman Rebellion ) English victory
Fought November 13, 1093, between the Scots under Malcolm Canmore and the English. The Scots were totally defeated, and Malcolm and his eldest son Edward slain in the battle.
Battle of Tenchebrai (Maori War ) English Normans victory
Fought September 28, 1106, between the English, under Henry I, and the Normans, under Robert of Normandy, Henry's brother. Robert was totally defeated and made prisoner, and Henry annexed Normandy to the crown of England.
Battle of the Standard (Rebellion against Albany ) English victory
Fought at Luton Moor, near Northallerton, in 1138, between the Scots, under David, and the English, under Thurstan, Archbishop of York, and Raoul, Bishop of Durham. The Scots were routed, and fled in disorder. The battle derives its name from the fact that the banner of St. Cuthbert of Durham, which was held to ensure victory, that of St. Peter of York, and those of other saints, were carried in a waggon in the midst of the English army.

Scottish Wars of Independence — 1296 to 1327     to top

Against great odds Scotland wins its independence from England.

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Dunbar (First ) English victory
Fought April 27, 1296, between the English, under Edward I, and the Scots under the Earl of Athol. The Scots were defeated, with a loss of 10,000 men. This defeat led to the surrender of Balliol, and Edward was proclaimed King of Scotland.
Battle of Stirling (First ) Scots victory
Fought September 1297, between the Scots, under Sir William Wallace and Sir Andrew Moray, and the English, 50,000 strong, under the Earl of Surrey. Wallace fell upon the English army as it was crossing a narrow bridge over the Forth, and practically annihilated it. This battle is also called the Battle of Cambuskenneth.
Battle of Falkirk (First ) English victory
Fought July 23, 1298, between the English under Edward I, and the Scots under Sir William Wallace. The Scots, who were greatly inferior in numbers, were strongly posted behind a morass, which at first greatly hampered the English attack. In the end, however, the English archers overcame the Scottish defense, and a final charge, led by the king in person, utterly routed them. Wallace escaped from the field, but was a fugitive for the rest of his life.
Battle of Methuen (First ) English victory
Fought June 19, 1306, when a small Scottish force, under Robert Bruce, was attacked and defeated by the English in superior force.
Battle of Loudon Hill (First ) Scots victory
Fought 1307, between the Scots, under Robert Bruce, and the English, under the Regent Pembroke. Bruce met the attack of the English cavalry with a line of spearmen, which they were unable to break, and they were driven off with heavy loss. Pembroke thereupon withdrew his army and returned to England.
Battle of Inverurie (First ) Scots victory
Fought 1308, between the Scots, under Robert Bruce, and the English, under Sir John Mowbray, with whom was a small force of Scottish sympathisers with the English claims, under the Earl of Buchan. The English were totally defeated and driven from the field with heavy loss.
Battle of Bannockburn (First ) Scots victory
Fought June 24, 1314, between the Scots' under Robert Bruce, and the English invaders under Edward II. Bruce's position was partly covered by a marsh, and further strengthened by pitfalls, in which the English cavalry were entrapped, and defeated with great loss. The king escaped with difficulty and the invasion was abandoned.
Battle of Inverkeithing (Second Independence ) Scots victory
Fought 1317, between the English invaders, and the Scots, under the Earl of Fife. The first onslaught of the English drove the Scots from their positions, but they were rallied by William Sinclair, Bishop of Dunkeld, and forced the English to retire to their ships.
Battle of Athenry (Irish Bruce ) English victory
Fought 1316 between the English under William de Burgh and Richard de Bermingham, and the O'Connors under their chieftain, Feidlim. The O'Connors were defeated, 11,000 of the sept falling in the battle, This is the last appearance of the O'Connors as a clan in Irish history.
Battle of Dundalk (O'Neill's Rebellion ) English victory
Fought October 5, 1318, between the Scots under Edward Bruce, 3,000 in number, and the English and Irish under John de Bermingham. The Scots were totally defeated, Bruce, with about 30 of his kinghts, and over 80 men-at-arms, being killed, and the invasion came to an end.
Battle of Dupplin Moor (Second Independence ) English victory
Fought August 12, 1332, between the Scottish barons, under Edward Baliol, and the forces of David, King of Scotland. Though largely outnumbered Baliol was victorious.
Siege of Halidon Hill (Second Independence ) English victory
Fought 1333, in the course of an attempt by Archibald Douglas, the Regent, to relieve Berwick, which was besieged by Edward III. The Scots were powerless against the English archers, and were defeated with a loss of 30,000, including the Regent, and four Earls. This defeat resulted in the submission of Scotland, and Edward placed Balliol upon the throne.
Siege of Dunbar (Second Independence ) Scots victory
This town was besieged, 1339, by the English, under the Earl of Salisbury, and was defended by Agnes, Countess of March, known as Black Agnes of Dunbar, whose husband, the Governor, was absent at the time. So vigorous was the defense, that Salisbury was compelled to withdraw from the siege.
Battle of Neville's Cross   English victory
Fought October 17, 1346, between the Scottish invading army, under David II, and the northern levies, under Henry Percy and Ralph Neville. The Scots were completely routed, with a loss of 15,000 men, and David and many of his nobles captured.

Scottish Civil Wars—Plantagenet Era — 1054 to 1455     to top

Clan wars, Rebellions, and Civil Wars in Scotland during the Plantagenet Era

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Dunsinane (War of the Roses ) Canmore victory
Fought 1054, between the usurper, Macbeth, and the Anglo-Saxons under Siward, Earl of Northumberland, who was supporting Malcolm Canmore, the son of the murdered Duncan. Macbeth was defeated, losing 10,000 men, and fled to the north. The Anglo-Saxons lost 1,500.
Battle of Otterburn (Border Raids ) Scots victory
Fought August 19, 1388, between 9,000 English, under Henry Percy (Hotspur) and a greatly inferior force of Scots, under Earls Douglas and Murray. Hotspur attacked the Scottish entrenchments, and was totally defeated, with a loss of about 2,000. The battle is celebrated in the old ballad of "Chevy Chace."
Battle of Homildon Hill (Douglas Rebellion ) English victory
Fought September, 1402, when the Percies lay in wait for a Scottish force, under Murdach Stewart, and Archibald, Earl of Douglas, who were returning from a foray into England. The Scots were totally routed, losing Stewart, 4 Scottish peers, and 80 gentlemen of rank.
Siege of Roxburgh (Betrothal of Mary ) Scots victory
This town, defended by an English garrison, was besieged by the Scots, under James II of Scotland, in 1460, and after a stubborn defense was captured and destroyed. This is the first occasion on which artillery was used by the Scots. During the siege the Scottish king was killed by the bursting of a gun of large calibre, August 3, 1460.
Battle of Harlaw (Revolt of Macbeth ) Rebels victory
Fought July 24, 1411, between the rebel Highlanders, under Donald, Lord of the Isles, and the Lowland Scots, under the Earl of Mar, together with the town militia of Aberdeen, led by their Provost. After a most sanguinary battle, the Lowlanders were utterly routed. Among the slain were the Provost, many knights, 500 men-at-arms, and the majority of the burghers forming the militia. The Highlanders lost 500 only.
Battle of Brechin (Norman Rebellion ) Royalists victory
Fought 1452, between the revolted Douglasses under the Earl of Craufurd, and the Royal troops under the Earl of Huntly. The Douglasses were defeated.
Battle of Arkenholm (Douglas Rebellion ) Royalists victory
Fought May 12, 1455, between the troops of James II of Scotland and the rebels under the Douglas brothers. The rebels were completely defeated. Archibald Douglas was killed, Hugh captured, and James, Earl of Douglas, forced to take refuge in England.

English Rebellions—Plantagenet Era — 1173 to 1408     to top

Major rebellions and uprisings of the Plantagenet Era

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Fornham St. Geneviève (Second Barons ) Royalists victory
Fought 1173, between the supporters of the rebel princes under Robert de Beaumont, and the forces of Henry II under the Justiciary, Richard de Lucy. The rebels were defeated.
Battle of Fair of Lincoln (First Barons ) Royalists victory
Fought in the streets of Lincoln, 1217, between the Royal troops, under the Earl of Pembroke, and the adherents of the Dauphin Louis, under the Comte de la Perche. The Royalists were victorious, and the French leader was killed.
Battle of Taillebourg (First Barons ) Royalists victory
Fought 1242, between the French, under Louis IX, and the English, under Henry III, with whom were allied the rebellious vassals of the French crown, the Comtes de Marche and de Foix. The allies were defeated, and Henry withdrew his forces from France.
Battle of Lewes (Second Barons ) Rebels victory
Fought May 14, 1264, between the Barons, under Simon de Montfort, and the Royalists, under Henry III and Prince Edward. The king was completely defeated, and the two parties signed an agreement, known as the Mise of Lewes, to submit the points in dispute to arbitration.
Battle of Northampton (Second Barons ) Royalists victory
In April 1264 Henry III and his forces besieged Simon de Montfort and his men in Northampton Castle. De Montfort mounted a rear-guard rescue but the castle was captured by the King.
Battle of Evesham (Third Barons ) Royalists victory
Fought August 4, 1265, between the royalists under Prince Edward, and the Barons under Simon de Montfort. The Barons were taken by surprise, having, at first mistaken Edward's army for reinforcements under young de Montfort, and were totally defeated, Simon de Montfort falling. This defeat ended the Barons' War.
Battle of Boroughbridge (Rebellion of the Princes ) Royalists victory
Fought 1322, between the Royalists under Edward II, and the rebels under Hereford and Lancaster. The rebels, falling back before the king, were surprised by a force under Sir Andrew Harclay while crossing the bridge at Boroughbridge, and were utterly routed. Hereford was killed, and Lancaster, with several hundred barons and knights, surrendered.
Battle of Radcot Bridge (Wyatt's Insurrection ) Rebels victory
Fought 1387, between the troops of Richard II, under De Vere, Duke of Ireland, and the forces of the Lords Appellant, under the Earl of Derby Henry IV). De Vere and his troops fled almost without striking a blow, and the King was thus left entirely in the power of the Barons.
Battle of Shrewsbury (Percy's Rebellion ) Royalists victory
Fought July 21, 1403, when the royalists, under Henry IV, met and defeated the insurgents, under Hotspur. Hotspur was killed, and Douglas and Worcester taken prisoners. The battle was the baptism of fire of Henry, Prince of Wales (Henry V), who displayed great bravery, and was severely wounded.
Battle of Bramham Moor (Percy's Rebellion ) Royalists victory
Fought February 20, 1408, when Sir Thomas Rokeby, High Sheriff of Yorkshire, defeated the Earl of Northumberland, who had again raised the standard of rebellion in the North. The Earl was slain, and the rebellion subsided.
Battle of Sevenoaks (Cade's Rebellion ) Rebels victory
Fought June 18, 1450, between the rebels, under Cade, and the royal troops, under Sir Humphrey Stafford. The force under Stafford was quite inadequate for the work in hand, and was routed, Stafford being killed.
Battle of Southwark (Cade's Rebellion ) Rebels victory
Fought July 5, 1450, between the rebels, under Cade, and the citizens of London, under Matthew Gough. The Londoners endeavoured to hold London Bridge, to prevent the plundering expeditions of Cade's followers into the city, but were driven back, and the central drawbridge set on fire. The Londoners lost heavily, among the killed being Gough.

Anglo French Wars — 1119 to 1214     to top

Miscellaneous Wars between France and England

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Brenneville (Louis VI ) English victory
Fought August 20, 1119, between a small body of English cavalry under Henry I, and a similar French force under Louis VI. Though only about 900 men were engaged, and very few killed, the fight was considered a decisive victory for the English, and Louis shortly afterwards made peace, conceding Henry's terms.
Battle of Freteval (Philip Augustus ) English victory
Fought 1194, between the English under Richard Coeur de Lion, and the French under Philip Augustus. Richard gained a complete victory.
Battle of Damme (Philip Augustus ) English victory
Fought April, 1213, when an English fleet of 500 vessels under the Earl of Salisbury attacked and dispersed a large fleet of French ships designed to support Philip Augustus' invasion of Flanders. The English captured 300 and burnt too vessels, and Philip Augustus was forced to abandon his design.
Battle of Bouvines (Philip Augustus ) French victory
Fought 1214 between the French under Philip Augustus, and the Germans, Flemish and English under Otho IV, the numbers engaged on both sides being considerable. The French gained a signal victory, which broke up the coalition and rendered the position of Philip Augustus secure on the throne of France.
Battle of Châlons (French-English Tournament catastrophe ) English victory
Arising out of a tournament in 1274, in which the life of Edward I was endangered by foul play, a fight in earnest took place between the English and French knights present. The French were worsted, and a considerable number slain. This fight is called the "Little" Battle of Chalons.

Hundred Years War — 1340 to 1453     to top

The Plantagenet claim to the French crown sparks a long term conflict between England and France.

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Sluys (Edwardian ) English victory
Fought June 24, 1340, when the English fleet of 250 sail, under Sir Robert Morley and Richard Fitzalan, attacked the French fleet of about 200 sail, under Hugues Quieret, lying in Sluys Harbour. Practically the whole of the French fleet was captured or destroyed, and Quieret was killed. The French lost 25,000 men, the English 4,000.
Battle of L'Ecluse (Edwardian ) English victory
Fought 1340, when the English fleet surprised the French in a narrow channel, and totally routed them, with a loss of 90 ships and 30,000 men.
Battle of Cressy (Edwardian ) English victory
Fought August 26, 1346, when a very inferior force of English under Edward III defeated the French under Philip VI. The battle is notable as being the first in which the English army was mainly composed of infantry, and as proving the powerlessness of mounted men against the English archers. The French losses were 11 princes, 1,200 knights, and 30,000 of lesser ranks, a total exceeding the whole English force.
Siege of Calais (Edwardian ) English victory
Siege was laid to this fortress in August 1346 by the English under Edward III. The citizens made a gallant defense, holding out for nearly a year, but at last were forced to surrender August 4, 1347. In the course of the siege, six burgesses offered themselves to the king as ransom for their fellow citizens; but their lives were spared on the intercession of Queen Philippa.
Siege of Aiguillon (Edwardian ) English victory
This fortress was besieged by the French under John, Duke of Normandy, in May, 1347, and was defended by a small English garrison under Sir Walter Manny, who held out bravely till the end of August, repelling numerous assaults. The defeat of Cressy then forced the Duke of Normandy to lead his army northward, and he was compelled to raise the siege.
Battle of Crotoye (Edwardian ) English victory
Fought 1347, during the siege of Calais by Edward III. The French fleet attempted to relieve the town, but was defeated and driven off with heavy loss by the English fleet.
Battle of Poitiers (Edwardian ) English victory
Fought September 19, 1356, between 8,000 English, under Edward the Black Prince, and 80,000 French, under King John of France. The English occupied a strong position behind lanes and vineyards, in which their archers were posted. The French cavalry, charging up the lanes, were thrown into confusion by the bowmen, and were then taken in flank by the English knights and men-at-arms, who completely routed them, with a loss of 8,000 killed, and numerous prisoners, including the King, The English losses were very small.
Battle of Cadsand (Lancastrian ) English victory
Fought November 10, 1357, between 2,500 English under the Earl of Derby, and 5,000 Flemings in the French service. The Flemings were defeated with a loss of 1,000 men.
Battle of Auray (Caroline ) English(Montfort) victory
Fought September 27, 1364, between the partisans of John de Montfort, and those of Charles of Blois, the rival claimants to the Dukedom of Brittany. The English party, under Sir John Chandos, were besieging Auray, when they were attacked by the French, who were led by Bertrand du Guesclin. Chandos' position, however, was very strong, and the French were unable to make any impression upon it. Meanwhile they were thrown into utter confusion by an attack on their flank, and were ultimately routed, with heavy loss, Charles of Blois being among the slain. Bertrand du Guesclin was captured. De Montfort was shortly afterwards acknowledged by Charles V of France as Duke of Brittany.
Battle of Cockerel (Caroline ) French victory
Fought May, 1364, between the Navarrese under Jean de Grailli, aided by a force of English mercenaries under John Joel, and the French, 10,000 strong, under Bertrand du Guesclin. Du Guesclin, who was executing a strategic retreat, was attacked by the English, who were surrounded and overpowered, Joel falling. De Grailli came to their aid, but was also overwhelmed and made prisoner, and the Navarrese, deprived of their leaders, laid down their arms.
Battle of Navarrete (Pedro the Cruel ) English(Pedro) victory
Fought April 3, 1367, between 24,000 English, under Edward the Black Prince, and 60,000 French and Spaniards, under Bertrand du Guesclin and Henry de Trastamare. The English, mainly owing to the skill of their archers, completely defeated their opponents, with heavy loss, du Guesclin being made prisoner. This battle is also known as the Battle of Najara.
Battle of Pont Valain (Caroline ) French victory
Fought 1370, between the French, under du Guesclin, and the English, under Sir Thomas Granson. The French surprised the English camp, but the English rallied, and a severe conflict followed, in which the French attack was at first repulsed. A flank movement of the French, however, threw the English into disorder, and they were defeated with a loss of nearly 10,000 in killed, wounded and prisoners, among the latter being Sir Thomas Granson.
Battle of La Rochelle (Caroline ) Spanish victory
Fought June 22, 1372, when an English fleet, under the Earl of Pembroke, intended for the relief of La Rochelle, was intercepted by a greatly superior Spanish fleet, under Don Ambrosio Bercenegra, and after very hard fighting was entirely destroyed or captured.
Siege of Chizai (Caroline ) French victory
Fought July 1372, between the French under Du Guesclin, and the English under Thomas Hampton. Du Guesclin, who was engaged in the siege of Chizai, was attacked by the English, in about equal force to his own, and, after a long and bloody engagement, totally defeated them, and captured the town. The reverse cost Edward III Saintonge and Poitou.
Siege of Châteauneuf-Raudon (Edwardian ) French victory
This fortress was besieged 1380 by the French under Du Guesclin, and was defended by an English garrison under de Ros. After an obstinate defense the town surrendered, July 4, but the siege was fatal to Du Guesclin, who succumbed to his fatigues and privations.
Battle of Agincourt (Lancastrian ) English victory
Fought October 25, 1415, between the French, numbering 50,000, under the Constable d'Albret, and about 15,000 English, mostly archers, under Henry V. The archers protected their front with a palisade of stakes, which broke the charge of the French men-at-arms, and the French army was routed with a loss of 10,000 slain, including the Constable and the Dukes of Alençon, Brabant and Bar, and 15,000 prisoners, including the Duke of Orleans and Marshal Boucicaut. The English lost only 1,600, among whom were the Duke of York and the Earl of Oxford.
Battle of Seine Mouth (Lancastrian ) English victory
Fought August 15, 1416, when the English fleet, under Bedford, sailed into the Seine with the object of revictualling Harfleur, which the French were besieging. The blockading force, consisting of 8 large Genoese carracks, besides smaller vessels, attacked the English fleet, and after six hours' hard fighting were totally defeated, with a loss of 5 carracks and 5 other ships, while Bedford succeeded in throwing supplies into the town.
Siege of Rouen (Lancastrian ) English victory
This city was besieged 1418, by the English, under Henry V. After a gallant defense the garrison surrendered January 15, 1419, the city paying a ransom of 300,000 crowns.
Battle of Beaugé (Lancastrian ) French victory
Fought March 22, 1421, between the English under the Duke of Clarence, and the Armagnacs, aided by the Scottish mercenaries, resulting in one of the few defeats sustained by the English during the French wars. The Duke and his immediate following, charging ahead of his troops, vigorously attacked the Scottish outposts, and, becoming separated from the main body, was surrounded and slain, all his gentlemen being either killed or captured. The bodies were afterwards recovered by the English archers, but the defeat was complete.
Battle of Cravant (Lancastrian ) English victory
Fought July 31, 1423. A force of Armagnacs under Buchan, Constable of France, with some Scottish mercenaries under Sir John Stewart, was advancing upon Craonne, the capture of which town would secure Charles VIIs communications with Champagne. They were attacked by the Burgundians and English under the Earl of Salisbury, and defeated with heavy loss. Both Buchan and Stewart were captured.
Battle of Verneuil (Lancastrian ) English victory
Fought August 18, 1424, between 3,000 English, under the Duke of Bedford, and 18,000 French and Scots, under the Constable Buchan and the Earl of Douglas. The men-at-arms on both sides fought dismounted, but the French could make no impression upon the English archers, who were protected by a barricade of stakes, and in the end were utterly routed, leaving over 4,000 dead on the field, among them Buchan and Douglas. The Duc d'Alencon was taken prisoner.
Siege of Orleans (Lancastrian ) French victory
This city was besieged by the English, under the Regent, the Duke of Bedford, in October, 1428. In April, 1429, a French force, 7,000 strong, under Dunois and Joan of Arc, succeeded in entering, it having been found impossible to invest the place completely. After various successful attacks on the batteries erected by the besiegers, Joan, on the 6th and 7th of May, led the garrison to victory against the English lines, and on the 8th Bedford was compelled to raise the siege.
Battle of The Herrings (Lancastrian ) English victory
Fought at Roncray-St.-Denis, February 12, 1429. Sir John Fastolfe was in charge of a convoy of salt fish for the English army before Orleans, and hearing of the approach of a French force, under the Bastard of Orleans, intrenched himself at Roncray. Here the French attacked him, and were repulsed with heavy loss, the Bastard being severely wounded.
Battle of Patay (Lancastrian ) French victory
Fought June 18, 1429, between the French, under Joan of Arc and the Duc d'Alenpon, and the English, under Talbot and Sir John Fastolfe. The English were retiring after the siege of Orleans, and their advanced guard under Talbot, being attacked by the French, was seized with a panic, and refusing to meet the charge of the French cavalry, broke and fled. The main body, under Fastolfe, however, maintained its formation, and made good its retreat to Etampes. Talbot was made prisoner.
Battle of Formigny (Lancastrian ) French victory
Fought April 15, 1450, when the newly landed English reinforcements under Kyrielle were totally defeated, and almost annihilated, by the French under the Comte de Clermont. This defeat practically put an end to the English domination in the north of France.
Battle of Blanquefort (Lancastrian ) French victory
Fought November 1, 1450, when the English made a sally from Bordeaux to repel a marauding band under Amanien. The English cavalry, advancing too rapidly, became separated from the main body, and was cut off. Amanien then fell upon the infantry, who, being unsupported, were overwhelmed and almost annihilated. So great was the slaughter that the day was long known in Bordeaux as the "Male Journee."
Siege of Castillon   French victory
This was the last battle of the Hundred Years' War, and was fought July 17, 1453. The English under Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury, marched to the relief of Castillon, and attacked the lines of the besiegers, but were taken in flank by a sortie from the French entrenchments and totally defeated, Talbot being slain. On October 19 following, Bordeaux opened her gates to the French.

War of the Roses — 1453 to 1485     to top

Civil War in England between the Yorks and Lancasters for control of the crown.

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Stamford Bridge   drawn battle victory
An encounter between the retainers of Sir Thomas Neville, and those of Lord Egremont, which developed into a pitched battle, in August, 1453. It is considered to be the beginning of the Wars of the Roses.
Battle of St. Alban's   Yorks victory
Two engagements were fought here in the course of the war. On May 22, 1455, 2,000 Lancastrians, under Henry VI, posted in the town, were attacked by 3,000 Yorkists, under the Duke of York. The Duke pierced the Lancastrian centre, and drove them out of St. Alban's with heavy loss, among those who were killed being the Earls of Somerset and Northumberland.
Battle of Bloore Heath   Yorks victory
Fought September 23, 1459, between the Yorkists under the Earl of Salisbury, and the Lancastrians under Henry VI. The former, who were inferior in numbers, were attacked by Henry, who crossed a brook before the assault. As the Lancastrians were reforming after the crossing, the Yorkists charged down upon them, and dispersed them with heavy loss.
Battle of Northampton   Yorks victory
Fought July 10, 1460, between the Lancastrians, under Henry VI, and the Yorkists, under the Earl of Warwick. The king's entrenchments were betrayed by Lord Grey de Ruthyn, and the Lancastrians were defeated with a loss of 300 killed, including Buckingham, Shrewsbury, Egremont, and other prominent men. The King was made prisoner.
Battle of Wakefield   Lancastrians victory
Fought December 30, 1460, between the Lancastrians, under Somerset, and the Yorkists, under Richard, Duke of York. The Lancastrians advanced from Pontefract and offered battle to Richard, who, though weakened by the absence of foraging parties, accepted the challenge. Somerset prepared an ambush, into which the Duke fell as he marched out of Wakefield, and the Yorkists were defeated with heavy loss. The Duke and many other nobles were killed, and Salisbury captured and beheaded.
Battle of Mortimer's Cross   Yorks victory
Fought February 2, 1461, when Edward, Duke of York, defeated the Lancastrians, under the Earls of Pembroke and Wiltshire, and drove them back into Wales, thus preventing a concentration of the Lancastrian forces.
Battle of St. Alban’s   Lancastrians victory
The second battle took place February 17, 1461, when the army of Margaret of Anjou, led by Somerset, Exeter, and others, attacked the Yorkists, under Warwick, Warwick withdrew his main body, leaving his left unsupported to withstand the Lancastrian attacks, and these troops, after a feeble resistance, broke and fled. Henry VI, who was a prisoner in Warwick's camp, escaped and rejoined the Queen, and a rapid advance on London would probably have led to his reinstatement. Warwick, however, took such prompt measures as to render the Lancastrian victory practically fruitless.
Battle of Towton   Yorks victory
Fought March 29, 1461, when Edward IV, immediately after his proclamation, marched against the Lancastrians, under Henry VI, and vigorously attacked their entrenched position at Towton. Aided by a heavy snowstorm, blowing in the faces of the defenders, Edward defeated them all along the line, with heavy loss, among the killed being Northumberland, Dacre and de Manley. Henry and Margaret escaped from the field, and fled northward.
Battle of Ferrybridge   Lancastrians victory
Fought 1461, shortly before the battle of Towton, when a force of Lancastrian cavalry, under Lord Clifford, defeated the Yorkists, under Lord Fitzwalter, who was endeavoring to secure the passage of the Aire at Ferrybridge. Lord Fitzwalter was killed.
Battle of Hedgeley Moor   Yorks victory
Fought April 25, 1464, between the Lancastrians, under Margaret of Anjou and Sir Ralph Percy, and the Yorkists, under Lord Montague. The Lancastrians were totally defeated, Percy falling in the battle.
Battle of Hexham   Yorks victory
Fought May 15, 1464, when the Yorkists, under Montague, surprised the Lancastrians, under Somerset, in their camp at Linnels, near Hexham. The Lancastrians were practically in a trap, and had no option but to surrender. Somerset and many other important leaders were taken, and promptly executed. This success secured Edward IV on the throne.
Battle of Edgecote Moor   Nevilles victory
Fought July 26, 1469, between the Yorkists under Pembroke, and the troops of the revolted Nevilles under the Earl of Warwick. Neville's army attacked Pembroke, whose troops were chiefly Welshmen, and, notwithstanding a stubborn resistance, defeated them with heavy loss, no less than Welsh knights falling, besides rank and file. Edward IV, who was in the neighborhood, though not present at the battle, was captured soon after.
Battle of Empingham   Royalists victory
Fought March 12, 1470, when Edward IV totally routed the northern rebels, under Sir Robert Wells. The battle is called “Loose-coat Field," from the precipitate flight of the rebels, who threw off their upper garments to flee the faster.
Battle of Barnet   Yorks victory
Fought April 14, 1471, between the Yorkists under Edward IV, and the Lancastrians under the Earl of Warwick. Warwick prepared to attack the king as he issued from Barnet, but Edward came out during the night and took up a position opposite Warwick unseen. The left of the Yorkists was outflanked and beaten, but their right outflanked and defeated the Lancastrian left, and then fell upon and routed the centre. Warwick was slain. The losses on the two sides are said to have amounted in all to 1,100 killed.
Battle of Tewkesbury   Yorks victory
Fought May 4, 1471, when the Yorkists, under Edward IV, defeated the Lancastrians, under Prince Edward, Somerset and others, with heavy loss. Prince Edward and other leading Lancastrians were killed, and Margaret of Anjou promptly surrendered.
Battle of Bosworth Field   Tudors victory
Fought August 21, 1485, between Richard III and Henry Duke of Richmond (Henry VII). Richmond had received a promise from Lord Stanley and his uncle that they would desert during the battle, and, after holding aloof for some time, they came over, with their followers, at a critical moment of the engagement, and Richard was routed and slain. He fought to the end, and among others who fell with him were the Duke of Norfolk and Lord Ferrers.

Wars of Italy—1512 to 1558

England's involvement in the Italian Wars led to battles with both France and Scotland.

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Brest (League of Cambrai ) English victory
Fought August 10, 1512, between the English fleet of 45 sail under Lord Edward Howard, and the French fleet of 39 sail under Jean de Thenouenel. The French ships were driven into Brest, or along the coast, with heavy loss. The English lost 2 ships and 1,600 men.
Battle of Flodden (First ) English victory
Fought September 9, 1513, when the English, under the Earl of Surrey, attacked the Scots, under James IV, in a strong position on the hill of Flodden. The position was turned by the English left wing, under Stanley, and the Scots totally defeated with heavy losses. James and all his principal nobles fell.
Battle of Guinegate (League of Cambrai ) English victory
Fought August 16, 1513, when a body of French cavalry, who aimed at relieving Terouenne, which was besieged by the English, under Henry VIII, and the Imperialists, under Maximilian I, were put to flight by the allies without striking a blow. The French fled so precipitately that the action was dubbed the Battle of the Spurs.
Battle of Solway Moss (Betrothal of Mary ) English victory
Fought December 14, 1542, between the Scottish invading army, under Oliver Sinclair, and a band of 500 English borderers, under Thomas Dacre and John Musgrave. The Scots were totally defeated, and many important nobles captured.
Siege of Boulogne (War of 1542 ) English victory
Siege was laid to the town by the English under Henry VIII, September 14, 1544. It was defended with great gallantry, and, in the face of enormous difficulties, for two months, when it was forced to surrender, the inhabitants being allowed to march out with their arms and property.
Battle of Ancrum Moor (Betrothal of Mary ) Scots victory
Fought February 17, 1545, between the English under Sir Ralph Evans, and the Scots under the Earl of Angus. The Borderers who had joined the English deserted during the action, with the result that the Scots were completely victorious.
Battle of Pinkie Cleugh (Clan MacGregor ) English victory
Fought September, 1547, between the Scots, under the Earl of Huntly, and the English, under the Protector Somerset. The Scots crossed the Esk, and attacked the English lines, at first with success, but they were thrown into confusion by a charge of cavalry, and in the end fled from the field with heavy loss.
Battle of Jersey (1st Italian Unity ) English victory
Fought 1550, when an English squadron, under Sir William Winter, attacked a French fleet, which was besieging St. Heliers. The French were completely routed, losing 1,000 killed and wounded, and the siege was raised.
Siege of Calais (Habsburg-Valois ) French victory
The last English stronghold in France was captured by the French under the Due de Guise, January 8, 1558, after a siege of seven days only. Mary is said to have exclaimed, on hearing the news, that at her death the word "Calais" would be found engraven on her heart.

English Rebellions—Tudor Era — 1487 to 1685     to top

Major rebellions and uprisings of the Tudor and Stuart Eras

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Stoke Field (Lambert Simnel's Rebellion ) Royalists victory
Fought June 16, 1487, between the royal troops, under Henry VII, and the rebels, under John de la Pole, Earl of Lincoln, who was aided by 2,000 German mercenaries, under Martin Schwarz. The King, whose force was superior in numbers, completely defeated the rebels, Simnel and all the rebel leaders being taken prisoners.
Battle of Blackheath (Flammock's Rebellion ) Royalists victory
Fought June 22, 1497, between the royal troops under Henry VII, and the rebels under Flammock and Lord Audley. The rebels were defeated with a loss of 2,000 killed, and all their leaders were captured and executed.
Battle of Farrington Bridge (Prayer Book Rebellion ) Royalists victory
Fought July 27, 1549, between a small force of Cornish rebels, and an equal number of Royal troops under Lord Russell. The rebels were defeated and driven from the field, but there was no pursuit. Each side lost about 300.
Battle of St. Mary's Clyst (Prayer Book Rebellion ) Royalists victory
Fought August 4, 1549, when Lord Russell, marching with the Royal army to the relief of Exeter, was attacked by 6,000 rebels, detached from the besieging force. The rebels were defeated with a loss of 1,000 killed, and Arundel was forced to raise the siege of Exeter.
Battle of Sampford Courtney (Prayer Book Rebellion ) Royalists victory
The final engagement with the rebels, fought August 17, 1549, when Arundel was defeated by the Royal troops, under Lord Russell, with a loss of 700 killed and many prisoners, including most of the ring-leaders in the rising.
Battle of Duffindale (Kat's Rebellion ) Royalists victory
The scene of the defeat of the rebels under Kat, by the royal troops, under the Earl of Warwick, in 1549.
Battle of Wrotham Heath (Hun Invasion ) Royalists victory
Fought January, 1554, when the Kentish insurgents, under Sir Henry Isley, were totally defeated by the Royal troops, under Lord Abergaveuny.
Battle of the Gelt (Northern Rebellion ) Royalists victory
Fought February, 1570, between the rebel Borderers under Leonard Dacre, and the royal troops under Lord Hunsdon The rebels were completely routed.

Tudor Reconquest of Ireland—1554 to 1603

Wars to bring Catholic Ireland under control of the Protestant English Crown

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Affane (Tudor reconquest ) Butlers victory
Fought February, 1565 between the rival clans of Fitzgerald and Butler over control of the southwest region of Ireland. Both clans were 'old English' and allied with local Gaelic tribes. This was a private battle fought without the sanction of the English Government.
Battle of Farsetmore (Tudor reconquest ) O'Donnels victory
Fought May 8, 1567 between the rival clans of Shane O'Neill and O'Donnell, the O'Donnel clan being backed by the official English Government. The clan of O'Neill was defeated and Shane was murdered.
Battle of Glen Malone (First Italian ) Fitzgeralds victory
Fought 1580, between the English settlers under Lord Grey de Wilton, and the Irish septs. The English suffered a serious defeat, among the slain being Sir Peter Carew.
Battle of Blackwater (Rebellion of 1641 ) Irish victory
Fought 1598, between 5,000 Irish rebels under Hugh O'Neill, and 5,000 English under Sir Henry Bagnall, the English Marshal. Bagnall was defeated with a loss of 1,500 and all his ammunition and baggage, while he himself was killed by O'Neill.
Siege of Kinsale (O'Neill's Rebellion ) English victory
This town, which had been seized in September, 1601, by 5,000 Spaniards, under Juan d'Aguila, sent to support the rebels, was besieged by the Royal troops, under Lord Mountjoy and the Earl of Thomond. On December 23 an attempt by Sir Hugh O'Neil to relieve the place was defeated, whereupon d'Aguila surrendered and was permitted to ship for Spain.

Scottish Civil Wars—Tudor/Stuart Era — 1513 to 1679     to top

Clan wars, Border Wars, Rebellions, and Civil Wars in Scotland during the Tudor/Stuart Era

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Corrichie (Huntly's Rebellion ) Royalists victory
Fought 1562, between the troops of Mary, Queen of Scots, and the Scottish rebels under the Earl of Huntly. The rebels, whose forces had been greatly reduced by desertions, were totally defeated, and Huntly slain.
Battle of Langside (War of the Holy League ) Rebels victory
Fought May 13, 1568, when the army of Mary Queen of Scots, 6,000 strong, was defeated and dispersed by the forces of the Regent, Murray. The Queen's troops were broken by a cavalry charge, in which they lost 300, while only one man of the victorious horse was killed, and fled in confusion from the field. Mary escaped to England.
Battle of Glenlivet (Huntly's Rebellion ) Rebels victory
Fought October 4, 1594, between the troops of James VI, 10,000 strong, under the Earl of Argyll, and the rebel Earls of Errol and Huntly. Though inferior in numbers, the rebels gained a complete victory, driving off the royal troops with a loss of 500 men.
Battle of Glen Fruin (Covenanter Wars ) Rebels victory
Fought 1604, between the royal troops under the Duke of Argyll, and the Macgregors and other clans, when the Highlanders gained a complete victory.
Battle of Rullion Green (Covenanter Wars ) English victory
Fought November, 1666, between the Covenanters, under Colonel Wallace, and the Royal troops, under General Dalziel. The Covenanters were defeated.
Battle of Bothwell Bridge (Covenanter Wars ) English victory
Fought June 22, 1679, when the Royal troops, under the Duke of Monmouth, defeated the Covenanters with great slaughter.
Battle of Drumclog (Huntly's Rebellion ) Scots victory
Fought June 11, 1679, when a party of Covenanters, under Balfour of Burleigh, defeated the royal troops, under Claverhouse.

First Anglo-Spanish War—1587 to 1596

Spanish invasion of England is flouted at the famous Armada.

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Cadiz (First ) English victory
On April 19, 1587, Sir Francis Drake, with between 30 and 40 English ships, entered Cadiz Bay, and destroyed over 100 Spanish vessels. This exploit Drake described as "Singeing the King of Spain's beard."
Battle of the Armada (First ) English victory
The fight with the Spanish Armada in the Channel began on Sunday, July 21, 1588, and lasted with intervals until the 30th. The Armada consisted of 130 ships, many of large size, under the command of the Duke of Medina Sidonia. The English fleet numbered 197 in all, but only 34 were Queen's ships, and of these but 8 were over 600 tons burden. Lord Howard of Effingham commanded, with Drake and Hawkins as his lieutenants. The English vessels hung on to the flanks of the Spanish ships as they sailed up channel, harassing them in every way, and doing considerable damage, until the Armada anchored in Calais roads, Here many of their finest vessels were captured or destroyed by fire-ships, and finally on the 30th, Medina Sidonia decided to attempt to escape northwards. His fleet was scattered by storms, and many wrecked on the Scotch and Irish coasts, and in the end only about one-half of the Armada returned to Spain.
Battle of Azores (First ) Spanish victory
In 1591, a fleet of 7 ships under Lord Thomas Howard was driven from Floris by the Spanish fleet under Don Alfonso Bassano. The action was chiefly remarkable for the gallant fight made by Sir Richard Grenville in the Revenge, which maintained an unequal struggle for nine hours, when her gallant commander was mortally wounded, and she surrendered at daybreak.
Battle of Cadiz (First ) English victory
In 1596 an English fleet led by the Earl of Essex and Sir Walter Raleigh entered the harbor of Cadiz. They first raided the harbor and sunk many of the Spanish ships, and later landed a body of soldiers who captured the town. The Spanish however, had warning and were able to sink or hide much treasure before the raid.

English Civil Wars — 1639 to 1651     to top

Civil Wars in England, Scotland and Ireland led by Parliament, which curtailed the power of the English King.

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Bridge of Dee (Bishop's War ) Covenanters victory
Fought June 18, 1639, between the Covenanters, 2,300 strong, and the Royal troops under Lord Aboyne. The bridge itself was barricaded and held by 100 sharpshooters, under Colonel Johnstone, and Montrose, who led the Covenanters, finding the defenses too strong, succeeded by a stratagem in drawing off the main body of the defenders, whereupon they forced a passage. The losses on both sides were very small.
Battle of Newburn (Bishop's War ) Covenanters victory
Fought August 28, 1640, between 4,500 English, under Lord Conway, and the Scottish army, 22,500 strong, under Leslie. Conway endeavoured to hold the ford of Newburn, near Newcastle, but his raw levies, after a cannonade of three hours, fled in confusion. Conway was consequently obliged to evacuate Newcastle, which was occupied by the Scots. The losses on both sides were small.
Siege of Drogheda (Rebellion of 1641 ) English victory
Siege was laid to this town, which was held by an English garrison under Sir Henry Tichborne, by the Irish rebels, under Owen Roe O'Neil, in December, 1641. The garrison held out successfully for three months, when O'Neil was compelled to raise the siege.
Battle of Edgehill (First ) drawn battle victory
The first battle of the Civil War, October 23, 1642, between the Royalists under Charles I, and the Parliamentarians, under Essex, each army being about 20,000 strong. The victory was claimed by both sides, but the advantage rested with the King, as the Parliamentarians failed to face Prince Rupert's cavalry, and the Royalists were not prevented from continuing their march on London.
Battle of Brentford (First ) Royalists victory
Fought November 12, 1642, between the Royalists under Prince Rupert, and a Parliamentary force under Denzil Holles. Three regiments stationed at Brentford were driven out of their entrenchments by the Royalists, losing 1,500 prisoners and 11 guns.
Battle of Braddock Down (First ) Royalists victory
Fought January 19, 1643, between the Royalists under Sir Ralph Hopton, and the Parliamentary forces under Ruthven. The latter had crossed the Tamar and occupied Liskeard, without adequate support, and was defeated by the Royalists with heavy loss.
Battle of Atherton Moor (First ) Royalists victory
Fought January 30, 1643, when the Parliamentarians, numbering 4,000, with a levy of armed peasants, were defeated by 10,000 Royalists under Newcastle. Fairfax, who commanded the Parliament force, succeeded in reaching Hull. The battle is also known as that of Atherton Moor.
Battle of Stratton (First ) Royalists victory
Fought May 16, 1643, between the Parliamentary troops, under General Chudleigh, and the Cornish Royalists, under Sir Ralph Hopton. The Royalists attacked the Parliamentarian position on Stratton Hill, and after severe fighting defeated them, capturing 1,700 prisoners, including Chudleigh, 13 guns and all their baggage and munitions of war.
Battle of Chalgrove Field (First ) Royalists victory
A cavalry skirmish fought June 18, 1643, between the Royalists under Prince Rupert, and the Parliamentarians under Hampden, and notable only for the fact that Hampden was killed in the affair.
Battle of Lansdown (First ) Royalists victory
Fought July 5, 1643, between the Royalists, under Sir Ralph Hopton, and the Parliamentarians, under Waller, who was endeavoring to prevent Hopton's advance upon Bath. The Royalists stormed Waller's entrenchments and forced him to retreat, though at a heavy cost to themselves.
Battle of Roundway Down (First ) Royalists victory
Fought July 13, 1643, when the Parliamentarians, under Waller and Hazlerigg, attacked the Royalists, under Prince Maurice, who was advancing to the relief of Devizes. The Parliamentarians were totally defeated, their attack on Prince Maurice being repulsed, while at the same time they were taken in the rear by a sortie from the town. Of 1,800 infantry, 600 were killed and the rest taken prisoners.
Battle of Newbury (First ) Roundheads victory
Fought September 20, 1643, between the Royalists, under Charles I, and the Parliamentarians, under Essex. The object of Charles was to stop Essex's march on London, and though his troops held their ground throughout the day, he could not be said to have gained a victory, as during the night he felt himself obliged to abandon his position.
Battle of Alresford (First ) Roundheads victory
Fought March 29, 1644, between the Royalists under the Earl of Brentford and Sir Ralph Hopton, and the Parliamentarians under Sir William Waller. The Parliament forces were victorious, but their losses were so severe that Waller was unable to follow up his advantage, and the Royalists made an orderly retreat.
Battle of Cheriton (First ) Roundheads victory
Fought March 29, 1644, when the Royalists under Lord Firth were defeated by the Parliamentarians under Waller. This defeat prevented the threatened Royalist incursion into Kent and Sussex.
Battle of Selby (First ) Roundheads victory
Fought April II, 1644, between the Royalists, 3,300 strong, under Colonel John Bellasis, and a slightly superior force of Parliamentarians, under Sir Thomas Fairfax. Bellasis had occupied Selby with the object of preventing a junction between Fairfax's troops and those of the Scots at Durham. He was attacked by Fairfax and totally defeated, with the loss of 1,600 men and all his artillery and baggage.
Battle of Cropredy Bridge (First ) Royalists victory
Fought June 29, 1644, between the Royalists under Charles I, and a detachment of the Parliamentary army under Sir William Waller. Waller crossed the Cherwell near Banbury with the object of taking the Royalists in the rear, but was repulsed with considerable loss.
Battle of Marston Moor (First ) Roundheads victory
Fought July 2, 1644, between 18,000 Royalists, under Prince Rupert, and 27,000 Parliamentarians, under Manchester, Leven and Fairfax. For the first time in the war, Rupert's cavalry was repulsed by Cromwell's Ironsides, and though the right wing under Fairfax was broken, the left and centre were victorious, and the Royalists were totally defeated, with a loss of 4,000. This victory gave the Parliament complete control of the north.
Battle of Tippermuir (First Scotland ) Royalists victory
Fought September 1, 1644, between the Covenanters, 6,700 strong, under Lord Elcho, and about 3,000 Scottish Royalists, under Montrose. The Covenanters were totally defeated, with a loss variously estimated at from 1,300 to 2,000 killed, and 800 prisoners, while the Royalist loss was trifling. Following up his victory Montrose occupied Perth.
Battle of Aberdeen (First Scotland ) Royalists victory
Fought September 13, 1644, between the Covenanters, 3,000 strong, under Lord Burleigh, and the Royalists, about 1,500 strong, under Montrose. The Covenanters were put to flight, and no quarter being given, they lost heavily before reaching Aberdeen. The Royalist losses were insignificant.
Battle of Newbury (First ) drawn battle victory
A second indecisive battle was fought at Newbury, October 27, 1644, when the Royalists, under Charles I, again sustained throughout the day, without giving ground, the attacks of the Parliamentary army, under Waller, Manchester, and others, but, as on the previous occasion, retired during the night.
Battle of Inverlochy (First Scotland ) Royalists victory
Fought February 2, 1645, when Montrose, with 1,500 Royalist Highlanders, defeated 3,000 Campbells and Lowland Covenanters, with a loss of 1,700 men. Argyle left the command of his forces to Campbell of Auchinbrech, taking refuge in a vessel on Loch Linnhe. This defeat broke the power of the Campbells in the Highlands for many years.
Battle of Auldearn (First Scotland ) Royalists victory
Fought May 9, 1645, when Montrose and his Highlanders defeated a largely superior force of Covenanters under Sir John Hurry, who was marching northward to raid the lands of the Gordons.
Battle of Naseby (First ) Roundheads victory
Fought June 14, 1645, between 14,000 Parliamentarians, under Fairfax, and 7,500 Royalists, under Charles I, with Prince Rupert in actual command. Rupert's first charge broke the Parliamentary left wing, but, as usual, the pursuit was carried too far, and before the cavalry returned, Cromwell on the right had turned the scale, and the battle was over. The Royalist infantry, overwhelmed by superior numbers, was almost annihilated, 5,000 prisoners, and all the artillery and munitions of war being captured.
Battle of Alford (First ) Royalists victory
Fought July 2, 1645, between the Royalists under Montrose, and the Covenanters under General Baillie. Baillie crossed the Don to attack Montrose, whom he imagined to be in retreat, but who was really waiting for him in a well-chosen position. The attack was repulsed, the Covenanters being routed with heavy loss.
Battle of Langport (First ) Roundheads victory
Fought July 10, 1645,between the Parliamentarians, under Fairfax, and the Royalists, under Lord Goring. The Royalists were routed, and driven by Cromwell's horse nearly into Bridgwater, with a loss of 300 killed and 1,400 prisoners.
Battle of Kilsyth (First Scotland ) Royalists victory
Fought August 15, 1645, between the Royalists, under Montrose, and the Covenanters, under Baillie. The Royalists won a signal victory, Baillie's infantry, 6,000 in number, being cut down almost to a man.
Battle of Philiphaugh (First Scotland ) Covenanters victory
Fought September 13, 1645, when 4,000 Lowland horse, under David Leslie, surprised and cut to pieces Montrose's force of Highlanders, encamped near Selkirk. Montrose escaped with a few followers.
Battle of Rowton Heath (First ) Roundheads victory
Fought September 24, 1645, when a body of Royalist cavalry, under Sir Marmaduke Langdale, which was endeavoring to prevent the investment of Chester, was attacked by the Parliamentary horse, under Colonel Poyntz. The first attack was repulsed with loss, but Poyntz receiving infantry support, rallied his troops, and drove the Royalists from the field, with aloss of 300 killed and wounded and 1,000 prisoners.
Battle of Benburb (Rebellion of 1641 ) Irish victory
Fought June 5, 1646, when 5,500 Irish rebels under O'Neill, totally routed the Scottish army under Monro. The Scots left 3,000 dead upon the field, and the fugitives were ruthlessly butchered by the Irish in their flight.
Battle of Dunganhill (Rebellion of 1641 ) English victory
Fought August 8, 1647, between the Irish rebels, and an English force under Colonel Michael Jones. The Irish were routed with a loss of 6,000.
Battle of Preston (Second ) Roundheads victory
Fought August 17, 1648, when Langdale, with 4,000 Royalists, was deserted by the main body of the Scottish invading army, and left to face the attack of about 8,000 Parliamentarians under Cromwell, The Royalists fought desperately for four hours, but were overpowered, and the whole force killed or captured.
Battle of Rathmines (Rebellion of 1641 ) Parliament victory
Fought August 2, 1649, between the Royalists, under Ormonde, and the Parliamentary garrison of Dublin, under Colonel Jones. Ormonde having ordered a night attack upon Dublin, the Parliamentarians made a sortie, and driving back the assaulting column, attacked the main body of the Royalists in their camp, totally routing them, with a loss of 4,000 killed and wounded and 2,000 prisoners. All Ormonde's artillery was captured.
Siege of Drogheda (Rebellion of 1798 ) Parliament victory
On September 3, 1649, siege was laid to the place by the Parliamentary army under Cromwell, the garrison of 2,500 English regulars being under Sir Arthur Aston. An assault on the 10th was repulsed, but on the 12th the town was stormed, and the garrison put to the sword. Four thousand soldiers and inhabitants, including Aston, are said to have perished.
Battle of Carbisdale (Third Scotland ) Roundheads victory
Fought April 27, 1650, between the Royalists of Orkney, 1,000 strong, with 500 Swedish mercenaries, and a small Parliamentary force under Colonel Strachan. Montrose, who commanded the Royalists, saw his troops broken by the Parliamentary horse, only the Swedes offering any serious resistance. The Royalists lost 396 killed and wounded and over 400 prisoners, while Strachan only had lost 2 wounded. This was Montrose's last fight, and he was soon afterwards captured.
Battle of Dunbar (Third Scotland ) Roundheads victory
Fought September 3, 1650, between 14,000 Parliamentarians under Cromwell and Monk, and the Scottish Royalists, 27,000 strong, under David Leslie. Leslie left a strong position on the heights near Dunbar, to meet Cromwell, and was routed with a loss of 3,000 killed and wounded, and 10,000 prisoners. Cromwell's losses were small.
Battle of Worcester (Third Scotland ) Roundheads victory
Fought September 3, 1651, between 12,000 Royalists, under Charles II, and about 30,000 Parliamentarians, under Cromwell. Charles attacked Cromwell's wing, and was repulsed and driven into Worcester, where he was met by the other wing of the Parliamentary army, under Fleetwood. The Royalists were utterly routed and dispersed, losing 3,000 killed, among whom was the Duke of Hamilton, and a large number of prisoners, including Lords Derby, Lauderdale and Kenmure, and five generals. Charles himself escaped with difficulty. This was the last pitched battle of the Civil War.

Anglo Dutch Wars — 1652 to 1672     to top

England and Holland battle at sea for command of colonial trade.

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Goodwin Sands (First ) Dutch victory
Fought November 29, 1652, between a Dutch fleet of 95 sail, under Van Tromp, and an English fleet of 40 ships, under Blake. The Dutch were victorious, the English fleet being much cut up, and two ships captured.
Battle of Portland (First ) English victory
Fought February 18, 1653, between an English fleet of about 70 sail, under Blake, Deane and Monk, and a Dutch fleet of 73 ships, convoying 300 merchantmen, under Van Tromp, de Ruyter and Evetzen. In the early part of the engagement, which was very severely contested, three English ships were carried by the board, and that portion of the fleet which had come into action was nearly overwhelmed. At this crisis, however, the rest of the English ships engaged, the battle was restored, and the captured ships retaken. On the 19th the battle was renewed off the Isle of Wight, 5 Dutch ships being captured or destroyed. On the l0th the Dutch sheered off defeated, having lost during the three days' fighting, 11 men-of-war, 60 merchant ships, 1,500 killed and wounded and 700 prisoners. The English losses were also heavy.
Battle of Leghorn (First ) Dutch victory
Fought off Leghorn March 31, 1653, when six English ships, under Commodore Appleton, were destroyed by a Dutch fleet of 16 sail, under Admiral Van Gelen. Only a sloop escaped the destruction. Van Gelen was mortally wounded during the action.
Battle of Texel (First ) English victory
Fought June 2, 1653, between a British fleet, under Monk, and a Dutch fleet, under Van Tromp. The action was undecided, but on the following day, Monk having been reinforced by 18 ships, under Admiral Blake, renewed the attack, and signally defeated Van Tromp, with a loss of 11 ships and 1,300 prisoners taken, and 6 ships sunk. The British lost 20 ships and 363 killed and wounded.
Battle of Southwoid Bay (Second ) English victory
Fought 1665, between the English fleet, under the Duke of York, and the Dutch fleet, under Admiral Opdam. The English were completely victorious, the Dutch losing 18 ships and 7,000 men. The English lost one ship only, and 700 men.
Battle of the Downs (Second ) drawn battle victory
Fought June 1, 2 and 3, 1666, between the English fleet under the Duke of Albemarle, and the Dutch under De Ruyter, Van Tromp and De Witt. After an obstinate fight, Albemarle, on the 3rd, retired, after setting fire to his disabled vessels, but the Dutch were too seriously crippled to pursue.
Battle of the Goodwins (Second ) Dutch victory
Fought July 1, 1666, between a British fleet of 60 sail, under the Duke of Albemarle, and a Dutch fleet of 71 sail-of-the-line, and 30 smaller vessels under van Tromp and de Ruyter, The action lasted two days, and was desperately contested, but the Dutch being reinforced in the morning of the 3rd, Albemarle bore away. On the 4th, having been joined by Prince Rupert's squadron, he renewed the attack, but without success. The English lost 10 ships, while most of the others were disabled. The killed and wounded amounted to 1,700, while 2,000 were taken prisoners.
Battle of North Foreland (Second ) English victory
Fought July 25, 1666, between the English fleet, under the Duke of Albemarle and Prince Rupert, and the Dutch, under Van Tromp and de Ruyter. The English gained a complete victory, capturing or burning 20 ships. The Dutch had 4,000 men killed or drowned.
Battle of St. Kitts (Second ) English victory
Fought May 10, 1667, when Sir John Harman, commanding an English squadron of 12 frigates, fell in with a combined Dutch and French fleet of 22 sail, under Commodore Kruysen and M. de la Barre, off St. Kitts. Notwithstanding his inferiority, Harman boldly attacked, and gained a signal victory, burning 5 and sinking several more of the enemy's vessels. The allies took refuge in the harbour of St. Kitts, and Sir John, following them in, destroyed the rest of their fleet, at a cost of 80 men only.
Battle of Sheerness (Second ) Dutch victory
Fought June 7, 1667, and following days, when the Dutch fleet, under de Ruyter, sailed up the Medway as far as Upnor Castle, and destroyed 7 ships of war.
Battle of Solebay (Third ) drawn battle victory
Fought May 28, 1672, when the French and English fleets, together about 140 sail, under the Comte d'Estrees and the Duke of York, were surprised at anchor, by a Dutch fleet of 115 ships, under de Ruyter. The French were first attacked, but soon edged out of the fight, and the bulk of the work fell to the English. The battle was indecisive, for though the Dutch lost five or more ships, and the English one only, the allied fleet was too crippled to take the offensive for over a month after the action.

Second Anglo-Spanish War—1655 to 1658

Second War with Spain was fought over territory and trading rights in the New World

DateBattle Summary
Battle of Jamaica (Second ) English victory
This island was captured from the Spaniards, May, 1655 by a combined English naval and military force, under Admiral Penn and General Venables.
Battle of Santa Cruz de Tenerife (Second ) English victory
On April 20, 1657 a British fleet under Blake destroyed a fleet of 16 Spanish treasure ships in Santa Cruz Bay, Tenerife in the Canary Islands.
Battle of Dunes (Second ) English victory
Fought June 14, 1658, between the Spaniards, 14,000 strong, under Don John of Austria and the Great Condé, and the French in equal force under Turenne. A force landed from the English fleet commenced the attack on the Spaniards, which was vigorously supported by Turenne, and the Spaniards were totally defeated, with a loss of 4,000 killed, wounded and captured. Ten days later the town of Dunkirk capitulated.