Joan of Arc
1412 - 1431
Joan of Arc is the greatest national heroine of France.
The daughter of a plowman, Joan stimulated a national spirit of resistance which led to the liberation of France during the later part of the Hundred Year's War.
Joan of Arc led French armies to victory over the English at Orleans (1429) and paved the way for the coronation of Charles VII at Reims. Captured by the Burgundians, and ransomed by the English, she was put on trial on charges of witchcraft and fraud.
She eventually was convicted only of wearing male clothes, an offense against the Church, and was burned at the stake in 1431. Her legend grew and she became canonized in 1920.
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From the Catholic Encyclopedia:
The Medieval Sourcebook: