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The Actions of Charles VII in Relation to Events Pertaining to Joan of Arc

Abstract. This essay examines the actions of Charles VII in relation to events pertaining to Joan of Arc. Did the personal ambitions of King Charles VII take precedence over the good of France? This paper investigates this question as well as analyzing the role of Charles’ advisers in the changing relationship between him and Joan of Arc. By examining translated primary source texts, in conjunction with secondary source material written by respected historians, it is the purpose of this essay to establish Charles’ narcissistic ambitions which led him to exploit Joan of Arc in the hopes of extending his influence and legitimacy as the French king. The essay will also investigate theories published by these historians, and the limitations of texts used in this study as proof of errors in both primary documents and important secondary texts exist.

The essay concludes that the decisions, largely influenced by advisers indignant about Joan of Arc, were made selfishly as Charles manipulated her image in an attempt to elevate his own status in diplomatic matters. Her victories were used to strengthen his claim and position as King, but once negotiations began with the Duke of Burgundy Joan was no longer needed and viewed upon as a threat; feelings of jealousy felt by Charles and his counsellors partly attributed to their passivity to her capture. Even in death, the Trial of Rehabilitation used her legacy was out of political necessity to restore Charles’ reputation, and to assess his influence over the church. His motivations led to the downfall of Joan of Arc in exchange for power, the power for which she had been fighting.

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Did the personal ambitions of King Charles VII take precedence over the good of France? During an era when the idea of a woman involving herself in matters of war was absurd, Joan of Arc not only acted as a military leader to thousands of men but also managed to lead them to several successes. Her main objective in battle was to see the Dauphin of France formally crowned as King in the same manner as all previous kings had been.1 Despite Joan’s devotion, the paranoid Charles VII believed she was a threat, therefore exploited her image to elevate or maintain his facade as an able leader. Once she became more popular than he, Joan was betrayed by Charles.

His apparent inferiority in the eyes of his subjects was one of the primary reasons as to why he made no attempt to save her from the hands of the French enemies. For Charles, Joan’s accomplishments became his means of obtaining power. His naive nature allowed for his counsellors to manipulate him; together, they deliberately used Joan and her missions to enhance their own positions rather than to act in the people’s interests. Decisions made by King Charles VII, in regard to Joan of Arc, were selfish and self-serving as his primary intention was to extend his influence and legitimacy as a capable leader.

As Charles and his advisers became increasingly jealous of Joan, their decisions became based upon personal reasoning as opposed to diplomatic interest. Despite the significance of the event, Charles, under the advisement of his counsellors, delayed his arrival to Rheims to demonstrate his role as the decisive leader. Without a formal coronation at Rheims, Joan and many other French people felt that Charles was not yet the true king. In some respects, Charles should never have been King as he lost the right to any title, even Dauphin, in the Treaty of Troyes.2 By being crowned at the traditional site of French kings, Charles would legitimize his authority and consolidate his power in the eyes of his subjects. While grateful for the uncommon success on the battlefield, due to her leadership abilities, her growing popularity and influence anguished Charles and worried his counsellors.

Given the large size of the army and its fanatical loyalty to Joan, Charles had to visit Rheims. He could not outrage the army and incur its wrath as they played a vital role in the preservation of his crown and the existence of France as a nation.3 Accordingly, Charles was advised to stall his arrival as the council envied Joan’s growing reputation. Motivated by jealousy, they undermined her missions hoping a failure would diminish the threat she presented.4 The Dauphin delayed his departure for Rheims rather than relenting to the wishes of Joan; Charles hoped to appear as though he dominated Joan rather than being the submissive sovereign benefiting from her glory.5 His decision also satisfied his counsellors as they realized they were more influential than the Maiden.6 The influence of Charles’ advisers, such as Georges De La Tr�m�ille, continued to directly impact his relationship with Joan.

Charles, while initially enthusiastic about Joan’s success at Orl�ans, realized the difficulty she presented. Since she was so beloved by the public, many historians feel that Charles feared her intentions. At the peak of her success, she was potentially able to do anything without the fear of facing any consequences. Although speculative, several historians believe Charles suffered from psychological neuroses including paranoia.7 Such paranoia greatly attributed suspicions of his own unworthiness as king and his tendency to be dominated by men of a questionable moral and political character. They convinced him of their own sage advice while providing Charles with reassurance and praise for his good judgement.8 “It often seemed that the worse he knew their character to be, and the more arrogantly they behaved, the greater the fascination they had for him. All his feelings of unworthiness, all his guilt about his inability to act and to rule his people as a good king should, were summed up in his submission to them.” 9

According to Edward Lucie-Smith, Charles desperately wanted to prove himself as a good king regardless of the Treaty of Troyes which disinherited his claim to the French throne. The lack of affection demonstrated by his parents has been hypothesized as a catalyst to his need for perpetual reassurance; he lacked confidence and had difficulty trusting anyone.10 These emotions caused a profound reliance on his advisers as Charles viewed them as his connection to his subjects; if his council was happy, the people would be as well.11 In actuality, the advisers only thought of maintaining their status and power within the council rather than serving the nation; this attitude became evident in their treatment of Joan. Despite her loyalty to Charles, the feelings of resentment metamorphosed into distrust. There were times Joan took it upon herself to make decisions, determined by her divine voices, against orders.

Her display of independence caused panic within the aristocracy.12 Despite orders to await the arrival of reinforcement troops before assaulting Orl�ans, Joan decided it was the best to attack immediately (this assessment is based upon the aid of her angels).13 Though she emerged victoriously, the extreme loyalty, devotion and faith the troops had for Joan was a source of apprehension. Her troops understood that the order was given by Joan, not the council, yet they did not hesitate. To them, Joan represented the highest authority. They were convinced that her mission was designed by angels and saints in representation of the mission God had intended; too many others, Joan became symbolic of their new hope and inspiration.14 Such emotions led to a concern based upon the growing enlistment numbers; Charles advisers were convinced that the men were inspired to fight for Joan rather than out of love for Charles.

The army had grown to 12 000 and Charles was incapable of paying the salaries of all the soldiers.15 The last thing he wanted was thousands of disgruntled soldiers upset at him and fiercely loyal to Joan. Charles feared that Joan might usurp his position using the strength of the army but more practically, the loss of the army’s support would entail France losing its offensive position in the war. Their continual victories meant seniority which was invaluable to negotiations with the Burgundians. The suspicions concerning Joan were impacting Charles as his jealousy resulted from his own insecurities about himself and his capabilities as a leader.16 This opinion is further illustrated by Anne Denieul-Cormier. He maintained three major voices: instability, distrust, and, the worst of them all, envy of others.” As long as Charles mistrusted what he felt and thought, he could feel for others only mistrust and envy.17

Such anxieties caused him to be easily manipulated by his advisers as seen on several occasions and agreed upon by both English and French scholars. Although his decision to stall his arrival to Rheims did not impact the symbolic importance of the event, this pattern of pessimism, regarding Joan’s intentions, grew to the point that some aristocrats saw Joan be a greater threat than the English or Burgundians.18 These changing attitudes were later demonstrated in their passivity to aid Joan in her desire to recapture Paris but more importantly, her own capture. While Joan’s heroics had been useful, once the Duke of Burgundy was willing to negotiate and acknowledge Charles as king, there was no longer a requirement for Joan. Once Charles’ had his coronation he was strongly urged by his more diplomacy-oriented counsellors to lessen his military efforts against the English and make peace with the Duke of Burgundy.

Charles was no longer capable of financing his army thus desperately wanted peace; if he lost the support of his army, his crown and the newly acquired towns would be defenceless. Charles was also aware of the Anglo-Burgundian alliance thus his further desire to make peace with the Duke. If the English army no longer had their support, they would not survive much longer as most of the allied troops were Burgundian.19 Alternately Joan of Arc, her army, and the majority of Charles’ subjects wanted their newly crowned king to sanction a more intensive push in regaining all of France.20 Despite the many objections of numerous military leaders, the King decided to accept the advice of his overly cautious counsellors, such as Georges De La Tr�m�ille and Regnault de Chartres.21

Charles pursued a less bellicose, diplomatically tough policy, capitalizing on the authority that his crown had invested him in the eyes of the Duke of Burgundy and the English monarchy.22 The Duke wanted to maintain control over a few French cities which had recently capitulated to Charles; one such town was Compiegne. Despite the strategic importance of the city, Charles was prepared to relinquish it, if by doing so, he could make peace with the Duke; this news was received with much disappointment and frustration by the inhabitants of the area.23 He did not understand that a sovereign does not belong to himself and that he has no choice but to sacrifice himself and to place himself in the service of the kingdom.24

According to Anne Denieul-Cormier, Charles felt that the people of France were to serve him, rather than he being the servant to his people. He only wanted to be accepted as the king of France and his coronation at Rheims had satisfied that desire.25 Once his desire was fulfilled Charles did not see a use for continued hostilities with the Burgundians. As Tr�m�ille became more desperate to stop the aggressive efforts of Joan, through the advice he provided to the king, the peace proposals to the Burgundians became so generous that any possible advantages in the north for Charles VII were virtually obliterated.26 To those who accepted this new king and had surrendered their towns to his rule, the degree of disappointment and disgust was immeasurable.27 Charles’ decision to concede for peace displayed Tr�m�ille’s importance as his rise to chief counsellor meant his obtainment of greater power and influence.

28 Joan’s most triumphant period coincided without Tr�m�ille as Charles’ most prominent adviser. For Joan and the unfortunate inhabitants of France, who had wanted independence and freedom, Charles’ decision undermined their belief and hope of a free France.29 During the time in which Joan and her troops marched to Paris, Regnault de Chartres and some of his colleagues made offers to the Duke of Burgundy which would have outraged Joan.30 While she was fighting for a unified France, their actions were contrary to her objectives. The basic terms of the agreement were drawn up by the Burgundians; the cities of Compiegne, Senlis, Creil and Pont-Sainte-Maxence, all of which had submitted to Charles, were to be surrendered to the Duke. In August of 1429, Charles VII and the Duke of Burgundy signed a truce for four months.31 Joan had dreamed of the day Charles would rule a unified country; the capture of France’s capital city, Paris, would have been extremely significant and symbolic.

She intended to build upon the successive victories preceding the coronation with military campaigns in Paris and Normandy, but her authority was overridden and her army was disbanded; the process of exclusion was beginning to take place.32 The king’s apathy, and tendency to take bad counsel, meant a halt to any attempt to take Paris as Charles did not want to break the surreptitious truce. Because Joan of Arc was not informed of the ongoing negotiations, Charles’ decision to terminate the attack, came as a complete surprise.33 Because of the growing suspicions about Joan, at a time as early as the coronation, she was excluded from many meetings and much information was not disclosed to her; this forced Joan to act independently of the king and his advisers’ wishes.34 When Joan learned of the truce, she claimed it was not true peaceful as she did not believe the Duke could be trusted, this initiated a message to Rheims detailing her intentions.35 She let it be known that the King’s army would be ready for an attack as she did not foresee a lasting peace being made upon the conclusion of the truce.

The news of her actions infuriated the council as they did not want anything to stand in the way of achieving peace; they worried her assertion might be perceived as an indication of a betrayal of the agreement.36 Several scholars believe that Joan of Arc would have been successful in Paris had she been given a sufficient amount of time and support. During the time she and other military leaders spent near Paris, they personally surveyed the Parisian fortifications. Her army was strong enough and had already identified weaknesses in the enemy stronghold, yet several frustrations halted their ability to execute their assault. Her attacks on Paris and elsewhere during 1429, were hindered by her declining favour with the king and members of his court.37 The nobles believed peace was a more important objective as did the King.

Charles was willing to negotiate with the Duke of Burgundy no matter what the cost and in spite of the protest of his people. For a few months after the Paris debacle, it appeared as if Charles had been correct in listening to the advice of his counsellors as there appeared to be some success in his negotiations with the Duke. Ultimately, Joan’s suspicions proved to be correct as the Duke did not concede Paris upon the end of the truce. While Charles had been deceived into the hopes of peace, he disbanded his army thus was unprepared for war; conversely, the Duke had been using the time to strengthen his position in the north in an attempt to regain towns lost during the war, as they surrendered themselves to the Charles.38 By the time Charles realized the Duke’s true intentions, it was too late for Joan. She was ordered to senseless battles which she inevitably lost, consequently her reputation among her followers was compromised.

39 The nobles who had feared her potential power were smug with her losses as her imperfect status caused fewer people to follow her with complete trust. Charles believed he no longer required the military successes of Joan; thus her presence became less important until it reached the point where she was totally abandoned by her King. The concept of the Trial of Rehabilitation, approximately 20 years after the death of Joan of Arc, was a feeble attempt by the French monarchy to obliterate any association with a possible heretic out of political necessity, rather than to let the truth be known about their heroine.40 When Joan was captured, at Compiegne, no effort was made by the French king to ransom her. After her capture, Joan was forgotten by her party by the commission, not omission. She was deeply embarrassing to them; a champion held on suspicion of heresy.41

If Joan was perceived as a heretic, Charles would lose the legitimacy he had achieved in the eyes of foreign leaders. For this reason, Charles had to substantiate Joan’s honour for the validity of his kingship was at stake.42 After her victory at Orl�ans, Joan had escorted Charles to the cathedral at Rheims where he was formally crowned as the King of France in the traditional coronation ceremony. Because of the sacred nature of the ritual, and the fact that Joan had been condemned by the church, the coronation of Charles was viewed as tainted.43 Historians are still not clear as to why Charles did not initially save and defend her character as her victories strengthened his power. Although there is some speculation that Charles did send representatives to ensure she was not sold to the English, no substantial evidence exists to support this claim.

One theory briefly mentioned by Polly Schroyer Brooks seems to make sense as to the ambiguity of the King’s actions. Charles was in the midst of negotiating peace with the Duke of Burgundy, thus he might have been trying to avoid taking actions that would aggravate the Duke. Even so, Charles owed much of his success to Joan therefore the process of his acquisition of the throne, and his means of securing, it was being questioned. While the English were responsible for the original trial, the verdict involved corrupt members of the religious community. In spite of the corruption, the notion that only the church had the power to make a ruling became significant. Their involvement in the ultimate decision regarding Joan was the real issue under scrutiny during the Trial of Rehabilitation.44 The motive for the reassessment was the struggle of power between the church and the state.

Charles was preoccupied in establishing the rights and authorities held by monarchs and nobles in the ecclesiastical atmosphere of France, thus weakening the reach of the papacy into his kingdom.45 Because of the ongoing conflict between the two authorities, the topic of Joan’s innocence was not the target of the repeal, but rather the issue was the ostensible power of the Church and the King.46 The Church wanted to use the trial as a means of reclaiming their power, whereas Charles used the occasion to maintain and fortify his dominance. To fully understand the context of these events, the atmosphere and mentality of the times in which they took place must be considered. Approximately 15 years previous to the trial, Charles issued the Pragmatic Sanction of Bourges which sharply limited the papal authority over the church in France and established the liberty of the Gallican Church.47 The decree caused the papacy to lose influence in France thus their desire to take advantage of the situation.

Joan’s legacy was incidental to the political purpose of re-examining the balance of powers. For this reason, it is not surprising that the outcome of the secondary inquisition was simply the annulment of the original sentence condemning Joan; there was no proclamation made of her excellence, an explanation of her choice of male dress or a ruling on the authenticity of her divine voices.48 This decision did not exonerate Joan but rather gave both the Church and Charles what they wanted. Charles needed the Church to absolve him of any guilt concerning Joan, and the Church seized the opportunity to display their superiority over Charles. There was the initial worry of whether the Church would allow its members to testify against their initial verdict, however the conditions in France favoured an outcome beneficial to the French monarchy. Polly Schoyer Brooks expresses the supposition that as Charles gained total control, the diminishing power of the Church needed his support.

The outcomes of the trial seem to support such a theory.49 With Bishop Cauchon, Joan’s main opposition dead, and the English retreating, the other judges who participated in the initial trial blamed the English and Cauchon as well as the procedure of the Condemnation Trial; the faults of the Church in the initial trial were suppressed using these scapegoats.50 By blaming others they hoped to please Charles just as they had pleased the English with Joan’s conviction.51 Although the Church’s intentions to please the monarchy, they continued their attempt at reclaiming dominance. The belief in their power was a result of their authority to absolve Charles. Their desire to demonstrate their superiority was seen on numerous occasions as petitions, by various members of the church, were made to the Vatican in an attempt to open a new inquisition.

By doing so, the Church in France could prolong the examination, claiming their intention to fully absolve Charles of any dishonour by means of their grace.52 In truth, the Church was merely extending their moment of importance by hopefully reiterating their pre-eminence. However, the Church’s compliance to Charles’ desired outcome displayed submissive behaviour not characteristic of absolute power thus, their supremacy was only ceremonial. Despite the Church’s endeavour to re-establish their influence, Charles’ authority was fortified as the cooperation of the church indicated their acceptance of his crown.53 The Trial of Rehabilitation, similar to other events concerning Joan, was used by Charles and the Church as a means to further their claims within the political hierarchy of France.

It is undeniable that Charles had a significant relationship with Joan of Arc; the details of their relationship, however, can be disputed. Did the personal ambitions of King Charles VII take precedence over the good of France? It is possible that the tendency of the King to be capricious was predisposed by insecurities about his capabilities rather than egotism. Nonetheless, decisions made by King Charles VII, in regard to Joan of Arc, were selfish and self-serving as his primary intention was to extend his influence and legitimacy as a capable leader. While Joan became more powerful, Charles’ attempted to reduce her authority, by increasing his own. As the combined envy of the council and the King grew, their strategy of using Joan became more evident. While her military victories were used to bargain with the Duke of Burgundy, the Trial of Rehabilitation used Joan as a fa�ade to enhance Charles’ reputation.

The act of manipulation is not exclusive to her life as it is also observed in treatises on Joan of Arc. The essay entitled Errors in Joan of Arc’s Texts stipulates many of the limitations associated with her biography.54 Contemporary investigations use Jules Quicherat’s collections of texts as a main source of information, as was the case for the majority of the referred texts in this essay. He was restricted in time and his research was limited to Parisian documentations; consequently, he was unable to locate all relevant records as they were scattered in both public and private archives. He compiled his lethargically obtained information, in his work entitled Proces de Condamnation et de Rehabilitation de Jeanne d’Arc. In addition to writing with political and philosophical opinions, he omitted certain parts of documents, as he considered them to be religious dogma. The errors in his historical commentary have been elaborated and interpreted upon by numerous authors. The contextual ambiguities of Joan’s life make it difficult to sustain some information as completely factual.

Despite the elusive nature of her history, the significance of her life remains unchanged. Her impact was a result of the battles in which she participated, as well as the psychological threat she posed to the monarchy. Joan of Arc was a military heroine, patriot and an innocent youth, infused with an intense love of her country, and the drive to defend a sovereign who reciprocated her devotion with resentment. While she struggled to overcome Charles’ faults of greed, power, and envy, she did not lose faith in her pious missions or her King. Although Joan of Arc’s naivety to these human flaws led to her untimely death, her legacy shall remain eternal.

Bibliography

  • Bois, Danuta. Joan of Arc (1412-1431). August 15, 2002. <http://www.netsrq.com/~dbois/joanarc.html>.

A very brief outline of Joan of Arc’s main accomplishments was primarily consulted as a general overview of various events.

  • Brooks, Polly Schoyer. Beyond the Myth: The Story of Joan of Arc. New York: J.B. Lippincott, 1990.

This book proved to be an excellent source on the study of Joan of Arc as it provided detailed information in addition to valuable insights into the human relationships and emotions involved with the main figures of the time. The book presents several interesting theories concerning Charles’s peculiar behaviours towards Joan not touched upon by other sources. It is well written, factually accurate and analytical in its narrative.

  • Denieul-Cormier, Anne. Wise and Foolish Kings: The First House of Valois (1328-1498).
  • Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday & Company, 1980.

An in-depth narrative of the Valois French Kings including Charles VII Although it does not contain as much detail on the events of the war, it proved to be a useful resource as the events were told more in Charles VII’s perspective rather than that of Joan of Arc. Denieul-Cormier is a prize-winning French Historian (History Prize of the Acad�mie Fran?aise, le prix Gobert) whose primary focus is that of the French Renaissance and the time preceding it.

  • Devries, Kelly. Joan of Arc: A Military Leader. Gloucestershire: Sutton Publishing Ltd., 1999.

A useful resource in regards to items relating to Joan’s military career. Particular attention is paid to her capabilities as a leader and the growing jealousy of Charles and his court. While previous works have concentrated on her religious and feminist feats, this text addresses the issue of how she became successful militarily. Kelly Devries is an Associate Professor in the department of history at Loyola College in Maryland. He has written widely on medieval military history, including one entitled “The Military Campaigns of the Hundred Years War.”

  • Gordon, Mary. Joan of Arc. New York: Penguin Books Ltd., 2000.

A very useful source in terms of factual data and the implications of various events. Military, political and psychological viewpoints are presented within this source that provided a deeper insight into Joan. Gordon examines significant deeper meanings; she is particularly insightful in determining the element of danger for Joan in all of her relationships with Charles, the Burgundians, the English and ultimately with the church. She cites Joan’s courage and tenacity of vision and her confidence in divine support.

  • Knight, Kevin. “Pragmatic Sanction.” The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume XII (Online). New York: Robert Appleton Company, 2002. <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/12333a.htm>.

Although the source is not related to Joan of Arc, it provided useful information regarding terminology relevant to the religious aspects during the fifteenth century. The terms are given in a factual manner without a historical interpretation. The original text version was published in 1911 with the supervision of the Archbishop of New York.

  • Lucie-Smith, Edward. Joan of Arc. London: Penguin Books Ltd.,1976.

This book includes the details of various events as well as information pertaining to the relationships between Joan, Charles and his advisers. Deep insight is provided into Charles mentality regarding his easily influenced nature and possible reasons as to why Joan was not saved from the hands of the English; this text took a more psychological approach. The original text was published in French, thus the English and Burgundians are more heavily criticized than in other texts.

  • Moritz, Garret. Sparknotes on Joan of Arc. August 15 2002. <http://www.sparknotes.com/biography/joanofarc>.

Although not a very in-depth analysis of Joan, this site did prove to be useful in regard to dates and superficial detail into significant events. This by no means should be used as a main source of information, but rather a quick tool for those in search of either dates or a general overview of her life.

  • Neillands, Robin. The Hundred Years War. New York: Routledge, 1990.

A study of the Hundred Years War with mentions of leading characters in regards to the war. This book was used for background information of battles during Joan’s military career as well as a tool in grasping the idea of the war as a whole. The results of Joan’s victories are slightly touched upon, but not with much depth.

  • Perroy, Edouard. The Hundred Years War. New York: Capricorn Books, 1965.

This edition was translated by W.B Wells from Perroy’s original French edition. This book was a useful source of information as it provided details of military, social, historical and diplomatic effects of the war as well as useful information on various leading figures. Joan is not the focus of the text thus an idea of her significance is seen within the context of the war.

  • Pinzino, Jane Marie. The Condemnation and Rehabilitation Trials of Joan of Arc. <http://www.smu.edu/ijas/pinzino.html>.

A commentary of the two trials with additional information regarding the political significance of each trial. Excerpts of the trial are also reproduced in the standard English translation done by W.S. Scott. Pinzino is the Assistant Director and Contributor of the International Joan of Arc Society as well as a professor with a PhD from the University of Pennsylvania. She is well published and has held many conferences on Joan of Arc.

  • Saint Joan of Arc’s Trial of Condemnation. August 12, 2002. <http://www.stjoan-center.com/Trials/>.

An online English translation of the transcripts taken at Joan’s Trial of Condemnation and Trial of Nullification. Although written during the time of the actual trials, they are not direct dialogue thus contain some bias of the French court recorders who later translated the texts into Latin for the official record. The reliability of the official record is questionable as some documents were added in afterwards to further incriminate Joan. One such document was the Seventy Articles, signed by Joan declaring her guilt (she later renounced this decision), the manuscript on record contained additional clauses added after she had signed it. However it is interesting to realize that many of the details of her life come from her confession and from testimony at her trial.

  • Twain, Mark. Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc. August 15, 2002. <http://www.litrix.com/joan/joan001.htm>.

Although not an in-depth study into the life of Joan of Arc, it is factually correct and makes reading more interesting. It is eloquently written, but some conversations tend to be romanticized. The text did provide any new information but did present some interesting philosophical points.

  • Warner, Marina. Joan of Arc: The Image of Female Heroism. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson Ltd., 1981.

An extremely helpful resource regarding the feminist aspects of significant events in Joan’s life. The main use of the book in the context of the essay was in regards to Charles’ true motives behind the Trial of Rehabilitation. This source is also useful in its different interpretations of the changing image of Joan since her death.

  • Wheeler, Bonnie & Charles T. Wood. Fresh Verdicts on Joan of Arc. New York: Garland Publishing, Inc., 1996.

A collection of essays from well-regarded scholars on the topic of Joan of Arc including Kelly Devries and Jane Marie Pinzino. Each essay is specific to a certain aspect of Joan’s life sometimes with comparisons to other historical figures. The book is much more useful as an analytical tool as opposed to a factual one. The 16 essays, each taking a different historical approach, are cross- referenced to form a unified view on various aspects of Joan’s life and death.

An epilogue by Regine Pernoud, former director of the Centre Jeanne d’Arc, proves the text’s credibility as Pernoud is a leading authority on Joan of Arc. Wheeler directs the Medieval Studies Program at Southern Methodist University and writes about medieval literature and culture (series editor of The New Middle Ages, editor of Arthuriana.) Charles T. Wood is a Daniel Webster Professor of History, emeritus at Dartmouth College and a Fellow of the Medieval Academy of America. He is the author of Joan of Arc and Richard III: Saints, Sex and Government in the Middle Ages.

  1. Dauphin was the title used by the French as it was bestowed on the apparent heir by the province of Dauphin�, in this case, Charles VII.
  2. Denieul-Cormier, Anne. Wise and Foolish Kings: The First House of Valois (1328-1498). Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday & Company, 1980. The Treaty of Troyes was an agreement between Charles VII’s mother, Queen Isabella, Philip of Burgundy and Henry V. Charles was to lose any noble title and the English and French thrones were to become one ruled by the King of England. Isabella and Charles VI never tried to suppress rumours of Charles VII’s illegitimacy as well as turning their son away in favour of their enemies.
  3. Devries, Kelly. Joan of Arc: A Military Leader. Gloucestershire: Sutton Publishing Ltd., 1999. At the time France was engaged in a war with the English and Burgundians. Had Charles lost his army, he would have lost even more land than he already had and possibly be replaced as king by Henry VI.
  4. Lucie-Smith, Edward. Joan of Arc. London: Penguin Books Ltd.,1976.
  5. Devries, Kelly. Joan of Arc: A Military Leader. Gloucestershire: Sutton Publishing Ltd., 1999.
  6. Wheeler, Bonnie & Charles T. Wood. Fresh Verdicts on Joan of Arc. New York: Garland Publishing, Inc., 1996.
  7. Devries, Kelly. Joan of Arc: A Military Leader. Gloucestershire: Sutton Publishing Ltd., 1999. medieval military history, including one entitled “The Military Campaigns of the Hundred Years War.”
  8. Lucie-Smith, Edward. Joan of Arc. London: Penguin Books Ltd.,1976. This book includes the details of various events as well as information pertaining to the relationships between Joan, Charles and his advisers. Deep insight is provided into Charles’s mentality regarding his easily influenced nature and possible reasons as to why Joan was not saved from the hands of the English; this text took a more psychological approach. The original text was published in French, thus the English and Burgundians are more heavily criticized than in other texts.
  9. Lucie-Smith, Edward. Joan of Arc. London: Penguin Books Ltd.,1976. Page 49. Although written from the French perspective, several criticisms are made about Charles VII. Lucie-Smith as well as several other historians agree
  10. Brooks, Polly Schoyer. Beyond the Myth: The Story of Joan of Arc. New York: J.B. Lippincott, 1990. This book proved to be an excellent source on the study of Joan of Arc as it provided detailed information in addition to valuable insights into the human relationships and emotions involved with the main figures of the time. The book presents several interesting theories concerning Charles’s peculiar behaviours towards Joan not touched upon by other sources. It is well written, factually accurate and analytical in its narrative.
  11. Lucie-Smith, Edward. Joan of Arc. London: Penguin Books Ltd.,1976.
  12. Neillands, Robin. The Hundred Years War. New York: Routledge, 1990. A study of the Hundred Years War with mentions of leading characters in regards to the war. This book was used for background information of battles during Joan’s military career as well as a tool in grasping the idea of the war as a whole. The results of Joan’s victories are slightly touched upon, but not with much depth.
  13. Gordon, Mary. Joan of Arc. New York: Penguin Books Ltd., 2000. A very useful source in terms of factual data and the implications of various events. Military, political and psychological viewpoints are presented within this source that provided a deeper insight into Joan. Gordon examines significant deeper meanings; she is particularly insightful in determining the element of danger for Joan in all of her relationships with Charles, the Burgundians, the English and ultimately with the church. She cites Joan’s courage and tenacity of vision and her confidence in divine support.
  14. Twain, Mark. Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc. August 15, 2002. <http://www.litrix.com/joan/joan001.htm>. Although it is not an in-depth study into the life of Joan of Arc, it is factually correct and makes reading more interesting. It is eloquently written, but some conversations tend to be romanticized. The text did not provide any new information but did present some interesting philosophical points and provides an interesting viewpoint on Joan’s life in more of a pensive point of view.
  15. Devries, Kelly. Joan of Arc: A Military Leader. Gloucestershire: Sutton Publishing Ltd., 1999.
  16. Wheeler, Bonnie & Charles T. Wood. Fresh Verdicts on Joan of Arc. New York: Garland Publishing, Inc., 1996.Denieul-Cormier, Anne. Wise and Foolish Kings: The First House of Valois (1328-1498). Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday & Company, 1980. Page 280. An in-depth narrative of the Valois French Kings including Charles VII Although it does not contain as much detail on the events of the war, it proved to be a useful resource as the events were told more in Charles VII’s perspective rather than that of Joan of Arc. Denieul-Cormier is a prize-winning French Historian (History Prize of the Acad�mie Fran?aise, le Prix Gobert) whose primary focus is that of the French Renaissance and the time preceding it.
  17. Perroy, Edouard. The Hundred Years War. New York: Capricorn Books, 1965. This edition was translated by W.B Wells from Perroy’s original French edition. This book was a useful source of information as it provided details of military, social, historical and diplomatic effects of the war as well as useful information on various leading figures. Joan is not the focus of the text thus an idea of her significance is seen within the context of the war.
  18. Gordon, Mary. Joan of Arc. New York: Penguin Books Ltd., 2000.
  19. Gordon, Mary. Joan of Arc. New York: Penguin Books Ltd., 2000.
  20. Lucie-Smith, Edward. Joan of Arc. London: Penguin Books Ltd.,1976.
  21. Warner, Marina. Joan of Arc: The Image of Female Heroism. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson Ltd., 1981. According to the Treaty of Troyes, the king of England was to hold the throne to both the French and English monarchies however this was not the case. Because Charles had his coronation at Rheims he was the true king. Henry VI held a coronation for his French crown a few months afterwards but his actions did not have much significance for two reasons: Henry did not receive his crown at Rheims and the people had already accepted Charles to be the King of France. The English were forced to grudgingly accept his kingship.
  22. Lucie-Smith, Edward. Joan of Arc. London: Penguin Books Ltd.,1976.
  23. Denieul-Cormier, Anne. Wise and Foolish Kings: The First House of Valois (1328-1498). Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday & Company, 1980.
  24. Brooks, Polly Schroyer. Beyond the Myth: The Story of Joan of Arc. New York: J.B. Lippincott, 1990.
  25. Devries, Kelly. Joan of Arc: A Military Leader. Gloucestershire: Sutton Publishing Ltd., 1999. A useful resource in regards to items relating to Joan’s military career. Particular attention is paid to her capabilities as a leader and the growing jealousy of Charles and his court. While previous works have concentrated on her religious and feminist feats, this text addresses the issue of how she became successful militarily. Kelly Devries is an Associate Professor in the department of history at Loyola College in Maryland. He has written widely on
  26. Warner, Marina. Joan of Arc: The Image of Female Heroism. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson Ltd., 1981.
  27. Lucie-Smith, Edward. Joan of Arc. London: Penguin Books Ltd.,1976.
  28. Gordon, Mary. Joan of Arc. New York: Penguin Books Ltd., 2000.
  29. Devries, Kelly. Joan of Arc: A Military Leader. Gloucestershire: Sutton Publishing Ltd., 1999.
  30. Brooks, Polly Schroyer. Beyond the Myth: The Story of Joan of Arc. New York: J.B. Lippincott, 1990. The truce was made secretly between Charles, Tr�m�ille and the Duke. The Duke promised to forfeit Paris at the end of the truce, but in reality, he was merely stalling for time. The Duke feared a potential French victory thus he decided to make deals with both the French and English. He planned to keep his ties with the English while convincing Charles his aims were of peace. In the end, the Duke remained sided with the English, thus using the time during the truce to strengthen Paris against a French attack.
  31. Perroy, Edouard. The Hundred Years War. New York: Capricorn Books, 1965.
  32. Gordon, Mary. Joan of Arc. New York: Penguin Books Ltd., 2000.
  33. Gordon, Mary. Joan of Arc. New York: Penguin Books Ltd., 2000.
  34. Devries, Kelly. Joan of Arc: A Military Leader. Gloucestershire: Sutton Publishing Ltd., 1999.
  35. Brook, Polly Schoyer. Beyond the Myth: The Story of Joan of Arc. New York: J.B. Lippincott, 1990.
  36. Brook, Polly Schoyer. Beyond the Myth: The Story of Joan of Arc. New York: J.B. Lippincott, 1990.
  37. Brook, Polly Schoyer. Beyond the Myth: The Story of Joan of Arc. New York: J.B. Lippincott, 1990.
  38. Lucie-Smith, Edward. Joan of Arc. London: Penguin Books Ltd.,1976.
  39. Brook, Polly Schoyer. Beyond the Myth: The Story of Joan of Arc. New York: J.B. Lippincott, 1990.
  40. Warner, Marina. Joan of Arc: The Image of Female Heroism. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson Ltd., 1981. An extremely helpful resource regarding the feminist aspects of significant events in Joan’s life. The main use of the book in the context of the essay was in regards to Charles’ true motives behind the Trial of Rehabilitation. This source is also useful in its different interpretations of the changing image of Joan since her death.
  41. Pinzino, Jane Marie. The Condemnation and Rehabilitation Trials of Joan of Arc. <http://www.smu.edu/ijas/pinzino.html>. A commentary of the two trials with additional information regarding the political significance of each trial. Excerpts of the trial are also reproduced in the Standard English translation done by W.S. Scott. Pinzino is the Assistant Director and Contributor of the International Joan of Arc Society as well as a professor with a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. She is well-published and has held many conferences on Joan of Arc.
  42. Lucie-Smith, Edward. Joan of Arc. London: Penguin Books Ltd.,1976.
  43. Warner, Marina. Joan of Arc: The Image of Female Heroism. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson Ltd., 1981.
  44. Brook, Polly Schoyer. Beyond the Myth: The Story of Joan of Arc. New York: J.B. Lippincott, 1990. The previous 150 years in European history explains the animosity between the monarchy and the Church. The monarchy attempted to tax lands belonging to the Church. Pope Boniface VII prohibited taxation; his arrest was then ordered. Later, the Council of Constance wished to make general councils part of the permanent apparatus of the Church. This would have entailed the Pope as a constitutional monarch and the council as the representative body of all Christians. Pope Martin V dissolved the council and repudiated their decrees. This was the beginning of the continued battle between successive popes and councils.
  45. Warner, Marina. Joan of Arc: The Image of Female Heroism. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson Ltd., 1981.
  46. Knight, Kevin. “Pragmatic Sanction.” The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume XII (Online). New York: Robert Appleton Company, 2002. <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/12333a.htm>. In July of 1438, the king issued the Pragmatic Sanction of Bourges, which declared the supremacy of the council over the pope and the limitation of papal reservations and demands of tribute. The recognition of the authority of the Council of Basle was only formal, for the validity of its decisions in France rested solely upon the edict of the king. As the law was recorded in the Parliaments the council received the right of interfering in the internal affairs of the Church.
  47. Saint Joan of Arc’s Trial of Condemnation. August 12, 2002. <http://www.stjoan-center.com/Trials/>. An online English translation of the transcripts taken at Joan’s Trial of Condemnation and Trial of Nullification. Although written during the time of the actual trials, they are not direct dialogue thus contain some bias of the French court recorders who later translated the texts into Latin for the official record. The reliability of the official record is questionable as some documents were added in afterwards to further incriminate Joan. One such document was the Seventy Articles, signed by Joan declaring her guilt (she later renounced this decision), the manuscript on record contained additional clauses added after she had signed it. However, it is interesting to realize that many of the details of her life come from her confession and from testimony at her trial.
  48. Denieul-Cormier, Anne. Wise and Foolish Kings: The First House of Valois (1328-1498). Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday & Company, 1980. The church eventually renounces the Treaty of Troyes thus providing full credibility to Charles’ authority.
  49. Pinzino, Jane Marie. The Condemnation and Rehabilitation Trials of Joan of Arc. <http://www.smu.edu/ijas/pinzino.html>. The trial had numerous violations in ecclesiastical court procedure. For example, during the trial, she wore chains and was guarded in the castle by men where the proceedings took place. Canon law stipulated that a defendant in a case of the Church ought to be held in an ecclesiastical prison, under the watch of same-sex guards. Joan also did not have a defence counsel as stipulated by canon law. Cauchon offered her an adviser from among those present, but Joan refused, recognizing that all present were allies of the English.
  50. Brooks, Polly Schoyer. Beyond the Myth: The Story of Joan of Arc. New York: J.B. Lippincott, 1990.
  51. The Trial of Rehabilitation takes seven years to complete (1450-1457).
  52. Denieul-Cormier, Anne. Wise and Foolish Kings: The First House of Valois (1328-1498). Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday & Company, 1980.
  53. Wheeler, Bonnie & Charles T. Wood. Fresh Verdicts on Joan of Arc. New York: Garland Publishing, Inc., 1996. A collection of essays from well-regarded scholars on the topic of Joan of Arc including Kelly Devries and Jane Marie Pinzino and the above-mentioned essay. Each essay is specific to a certain aspect of Joan’s life sometimes with comparisons to other historical figures. The book is much more useful as an analytical tool as opposed to a factual one. The 16 essays, each taking a different historical approach, are cross-referenced to form a unified view on various aspects of Joan’s life and death. An epilogue by Regine Pernoud, former director of the Centre Jeanne d’Arc, proves the text’s credibility as Pernoud is a leading scholar of Joan of Arc. Wheeler directs the Medieval Studies Program at Southern Methodist University and writes about medieval literature and culture (series editor of The New Middle Ages, editor of Arthuriana.) Charles T. Wood is a Daniel Webster Professor of History, emeritus at Dartmouth College and a Fellow of the Medieval Academy of America. He is the author of Joan of Arc and Richard III: Saints, Sex and Government in the Middle Ages.

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