Portal:Saints/Selected picture/January 2007

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Statue of Joan of Arc in Notre-Dame de Paris cathedral interior, taken in 2001.
Credit: Steven G. Johnson

Joan of Arc, also known as Jeanne d'Arc,[1] (c.1412 – 30 May 1431)[2] was a national heroine of France and is a saint of the Roman Catholic Church. She asserted that she had visions from God which told her to recover her homeland from English domination late in the Hundred Years' War. The uncrowned King Charles VII sent her to the siege at Orléans as part of a relief mission. She gained prominence when she overcame the light regard of veteran commanders and lifted the siege in only nine days. Several more swift victories led to Charles VII's coronation at Reims and settled the disputed succession to the throne.


  1. ^ Joan of Arc's name was written in a variety of ways, particularly prior to the mid-19th century. See Pernoud and Clin, pp. 220–221.
  2. ^ Modern biographical summaries often assert a birthdate of 6 January. Actually Joan of Arc could only estimate her own age. All of the rehabilitation trial witnesses likewise estimated her age even though several of these people were her godmothers and godfathers. The 6 January claim is based on a single source: a letter from Lord Perceval de Boullainvilliers on 21 July 1429 (see Pernoud's Joan of Arc By Herself and Her Witnesses, p. 98: "Boulainvilliers tells of her birth in Domrémy, and it is he who gives us an exact date, which may be the true one, saying that she was born on the night of Epiphany, January 6th"). Boulainvilliers, however, was not from Domrémy. The event was probably not recorded. The practice of parish registers for non-noble births did not begin until several generations later.