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Saint Joan of Arc

Joan d'Arc I  II  III
      Table of Contents
France During Hundred Years' War
Joan of Arc's Religion
Joan's First attempt to see Charles VII
Joan Goes to Charles VII
Joan Meets the Dauphin Charles
Breaking the Siege of Orléans
Coronation of Charles VII
English Capture Joan
Heresy Trial and Death of Joan of Arc
Beatification of Joan
Sainthood of Joan
Joan of Arc Museum
Links to Other Sites
  Tapestry with Image of Joan of Arc  

                                                                Tapestry with Joan's Image
                                                                                           of Joan of Arc

  France During Hundred Years' War

The setting for Joan’s birth, and her 19 years of life, was in northern France during the Hundred Years’ War.  This series of wars was brought about, in part, by the opposing claims to the French throne that were pursued by king Henry VI of England and Charles, the son of the late Valois king of France, Charles VI.  Henry, aided by the Duke of Burgundy, who’s father [John the Fearless] had been assassinated in 1419 by the minions of Charles, led an English army bent on the conquest of France. 

By 1427, five years after his Father’s death, Charles had still not been crowned king.  This fact caused a large number of Frenchmen to be cynical about his cause.  Reims, the ancient place for crowning French kings, was in the hands of the English and Charles’ treasury was in dire straights.  Charles’ cause seemed hopeless. 

Joan of Arc's Religion

Jeanne d’Arc, the daughter of a wealthy tenant farmer, was born at Domrémy France, in the Meuse River valley, in what is now the département of Vosges, in the region of Lorraine, to the east of Nancy [also called Jeanne la Pucelle d’Orléans (Joan the Maid of Orléans)].  The area were she was born was often the scene of fighting during the Hundred Years’ War between the French and English.  At the time, the English and their ally, the Duke of Burgundy, controlled almost all of northern France, including the Champagne city of Reims [which had been the venue for over a thousand years for the coronation of the French kings].  The Valois Dauphin, Charles VII, had not yet been crowned.  His succession to the throne was in dispute and a large portion of the French population did not follow him. 

Joan acquired a deep religious belief from her mother and spent much of her time praying in church.  By the age of 13 she was having religious visions and was hearing what she believed to be the voices of saints.  Initially, she kept these experiences to herself.  But, when St. Catherine and St. Margaret told her that God had chosen her to help Charles VII to drive the English out of France, she told her parents about the visions.  Her father refused to let her go to Charles. 

    Joan's First Try to go to Charles VII
In 1428, Joan’s visions continued, and her friends [who believed she was really divinely inspired] obtained a horse and boy’s clothing for her and accompanied her to the military commander at Vaucouleurs [which is located just west of Nancy in present the present day départment of Meuse, region of Lorraine], Robert de Baudricourt.  Baudricourt did not take her seriously and she returned home. 

    Joan Goes to Charles VII
In January, 1429, Joan again went to Vaucoulers where this time she was able to gain the confidence of Capitan Baudricourt.  He provided her with an escort of six men at arms to take her to the king at Chinon [which is in the present day département of Indre-et-Loire, the region of Centre] in the Loire Valley.  She left Vaucoulers, for Chinon on about February 13, dressed as a man.  She, and her escort, traveled 11 days, across enemy held land, before reaching the Dauphin. 

Continued >>>

                                             Joan d'Arc I  II  III


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