Battle of the Golden Spurs


The Battle of the Golden Spurs between the Kingdom of France and the County of Flanders which is in today's Belgium.
The reason for the battle was a French attempt to subdue the County of Flanders which was formally part of the French kingdom and added to the crown lands in 1297 but resisted centralist French policies. In 1300, the French king Philip IV appointed Jacques de Châtillon as governor of Flanders and took the Count of Flanders, Guy of Dampierre, hostage. This caused considerable unrest among the influential Flemish urban guilds.
The French king sent a powerful force led by Count Robert II of Artois.
The Flemish responed with two groups, one of 3,000 men from the city militia of Bruges, was led by William of Jülich, grandson of Count Guy and Pieter de Coninck, one of the leaders of the uprising in Bruges. The other group of about 2,500 men from the suburbs of Bruges and the coastal areas, was headed by Guy of Namur, son of Count Guy, with the two sons of Guy of Dampierre; the two groups met near Kortrijk. From the East came another 2,500 men, led by Jan Borluut from Ghent and yet another 1,000 men from Ypres, led by Jan van Renesse from Zeeland.
The Flemish were primarily town militia who were well equipped, with such weapons as the mace goedendag and a long spear known as the geldon. They were also well organized; the urban militias of the time prided themselves on their regular training and preparation, which allowed them to use the geldon. They numbered about 9,000, including 400 nobles. The biggest difference from the French and other feudal armies was that the Flemish force consisted almost solely of infantry with only the leaders mounted, more to express their leadership than for combat.

The French were by contrast a classic feudal army made up of a core of 2,500 noble cavalry, including knights and squires. They were supported by 1,000 crossbowmen, 1,000 spear men and up to 3,500 other light infantry, totaling around 8,000. Contemporary military theory valued each knight as equal to roughly ten infantry.
The large numbers of golden spurs that were collected from the French knights gave the battle its name at least a thousand noble cavaliers were killed
 The French losses over 1000, the Flemish losses 100.
Starting forces County of Flanders 9,000 the Kingdom of France 8,000

Battles 1001-1900
Battle of the Golden Spurs, flanders, burgundy
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