Joan of ArcMilitary Leader / Saint
Died: 30 May 1431 (burned at the stake)
Birthplace: Domrémy, France
Best known as: The French heroine who was burned at the stake
Also known as The Maid of Orléans; in French, Jeanne D'Arc
A hero of the Hundred Years War, Joan of Arc remains a French national hero six centuries later. As a teenager she heard voices from on high urging her to save France from English domination. Despite being a young woman, she was placed at the head of an army; she attacked the English and forced them to retreat from Orléans. Later she was captured by the English, tried for heresy, and burned at the stake. In 1920 she was canonized by the Catholic Church.
Extra credit: Joan of Arc was the topic of the play Saint Joan by George Bernard Shaw and the book Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc by Mark Twain... She has been played in the movies by Ingrid Bergman and Milla Jovovich, among others... Another famous French maiden was Bernadette of Lourdes.
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