We happy few, we band of brothers

By | 22nd October 2009

Every year Millnet throws a party for its staff on October 25th or as near as possible to that date. Apart from being a thank you to the staff for the year’s work, the party commemorates the date Millnet was founded  –  The Feast of Saint Crispin.

I admit to being woefully ignorant about St Crispin. Apart from the speech made by the King in Shakespeare’s play Henry V (Act 4 Scene 3), I knew next to nothing about him.

Apparently he fell foul of the Roman authorities because of his Christian beliefs and was martyred in about AD 286. He was beheaded, but as far as I can tell was spared the more horrible Roman cruelties.

While some have doubted if he actually existed he is the patron saint of cobblers, tanners and leather workers. The latter, according to Wikipedia, include bikers and “others who habitually wear leather”.

Being a lover of history and generally useless information, I was delighted to see that apart from the battle of Agincourt in 1415, October 25th is also the date of the Battle of Balaclava in the Crimean War in 1854 (remember the Charge of the Light Brigade) and a battle of which I had never heard, The Battle of Leyte Gulf in the Pacific in 1944.

As well as looking forward to this year’s party, I thought I would share with you not only the magnificent speech on St Crispin’s Day but also its rendition by Kenneth Branagh as Henry V.