Joan of Arc in Chinon

*** Please scroll down after this post for pictures***
One of the reasons why D & I chose to stop in Chinon was for it’s History.

Chinon is located in the center of France,in a region called “la Touraine”

Our ultimate goal of this excursion was to visit the Fortresse royale/ Royal Fortress. These photos will follow, but first a brief intro; the fortress was first established as a royal place of residence in the 12th century, through Henri II and his queen, Eleanor of Aquitane.But the event that really put the Fortress in History happened in 1429. This is the year that a simple peasant girl from the Lorraine region in Eastern France , took a very long trip to Chinon. Her name was Joan of Arc :

Ingrid Bergmann portrayed Joan of Arc in a classic movie.

The story of Joan of Arc has been widely commented,ridiculed or worhshiped through the ages. But this is a simple country girl who towards the age of 12, had hallucinations and later heard voices when she was alone in the fields.She said that 3 saints ordered her to drive the English out of France and bring the heir to the throne to the city of Reims to be crowned king.

Now, whether it be the 15th century or 21st century, that’s quite a story for such a young girl to tell.But, her persistance and deep faith led her eventually to a Count,Robert de Baudricourt, and asked permission to be escorted to Chinon.Joan was determined to go to Chinon and tell the heir of the throne all that she heard and saw in her visions.

What would follow was a dangerous trip through then enemy occupied areas ( Joan disguiged as a man), all the way down to la Touraine and Chinon. The news spread to the court, that this young lady was arriving. At the time, suspicion was the key word, and the heir to the throne, Charles VII prefered to lay low. He disguised himself in ordinary clothes, and mingled with the crowd assembled at the Fortress.He observed the crowd and waited…

It is the most famous part of the Joan of Arc legend at Chinon, that once in the crowded room, Joan of Arc knew who was Charles VII, even without ever meeting him. She found him in the crowd, and bowed down before him adressing him as “Gentil Dauphin” or “Kind Prince”.

There was no hiding from Joan 🙂

The rest would follow is a long story; Joan leading the troops against the English throughout the countryside, with victories, defeats. Her vision for the prince became reality, as he was crowned King of France. But what followed for Joan was arrest by the English, with her trial, conviction ( for heresy) and burning of poor Joan on the stake in Rouen in Normandy, in 1431.

It is one of the most fascinating and touching episodes of France’s History.And more than happy to feature a woman who marked History.

5 thoughts on “Joan of Arc in Chinon

  1. I don’t know my French history that well… I’m good at modern and contemporary history (from WWI) but that’s about it! That said, it’s interesting.

  2. Thank you so much for sharing this story with us, Barbara!

    I knew the basic history about Joan of Arc, but your post gave me a much more indepth understanding.

    There’s was a play written based on the life of Joan of Arc called, “To Burn a Witch” it’s wonderful!

    Hope you had a marvi day, my friend!

    {{{{ Barb }}}}

  3. Hey there 😉

    Zhu- I enjoy History but don’t reguarlly take time to brush up on it. This post let me research and read, and I like that. That’s why I enjoy visiting Historical areas on trips. You seem to be more of a contemporary History person, while I like going back further in time… so, send me the Time Capsule !!
    Bises xx

    Ronnie- Hi! It is always a pleasure, buddy. I
    i think that most people have seen a Joan of Arc film ( more recently, it was Mila Jojovitch as Joan), and this story fascinate me.
    To tell you the truth, famous women in French History are rare. Whenever I will come upon one in my travels, through some discovery, I will have the great pleasure to post it.

    I didn’t know about the play called ” To burn a witch”. How intense that must of been, because that was during her trial and emprisonment.

    See you very soon & take care dear XXOO;

    1. Hi Karin,
      This is one of most most incredible stories in History and it concerns a woman! That is rare in world History. It was a pleasure to discover la forteresse in Chinon and to visualise this important monument.iI am glad that you enjoyed it.


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