Thursday, May 2, 2013

Joan at Orleans

After Joan of Arc arrived in Orleans on April 29, 1429, she continued to try to warn the English besieging the town to leave with two more letters (Joan first warned the English in a letter on March 22, 1429). Joan sent a letter to Lord Talbot, the English leader in Orleans, that was later described by Lord Dunois the “Bastard of Orleans” at her trial of rehabilitation as follows:

“She did in fact address to the English a letter, written in her mother tongue, to raise the siege or, if they refused, to attack them so strongly they would be forced to retire. This letter was addressed to my Lord Talbot. And I affirm that from that hour, while formerly the English with two hundred of theirs could put to flight a thousand of ours, it required only four or five hundred of our soldiers to combat all the power of the English, and we were so successful with the enemy that they no longer dared to leave their strongholds and bastilles."

 Joan then had a letter shot into the fort Les Tourelles on May 5, 1429 that contained her final warning:

 “You, men of England, who have no right in the kingdom of France, the King of Heaven sends word to you, and commands by me, Joan the Maid, that you leave your fortresses and return to your own country. Otherwise I will produce a clash of arms to be eternally remembered. This is the third and last time I will write to you, and I will not write to you any more. Jesus Maria Joan the Maid”

Unfortunately for the English they did not heed Joan's warnings and would pay a heavy price only a few days later.

1 comment:

  1. It was both highly honourable and quite womanly of Joan to have tried for a peaceful resolution first. Of course, in the days when she was writing these letters, the Maid was also tactically surveying the territory and taking account of any possible troops she might deploy.... ;)