Jeanne D'Arc: her life and death eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 397 pages of information about Jeanne D'Arc.

Jeanne, however, having freely expressed her opinion, adapted herself to the circumstances, though extremely averse to separate herself from her soldiers, good men who had confessed and prepared their souls for every emergency.  She finally consented, however, to ride on with Dunois and La Hire.  The wind was against the convoy, so that the heavy boats, deeply laden with beeves and corn, had a dangerous and slow voyage before them.  “Have patience,” cried Jeanne; “by the help of God all will go well”; and immediately the wind changed, to the astonishment and joy of all, and the boats arrived in safety “in spite of the English, who offered no hindrance whatever,” as she had predicted.  The little party made their way along the bank, and in the twilight of the April evening, about eight o’clock, entered Orleans.  The Deliverer, it need not be said, was hailed with joy indescribable.  She was on a white horse, and carried, Dunois says, the banner in her hand, though it was carried before her when she entered the town.  The white figure in the midst of those darkly gleaming mailed men, would in itself throw a certain glory through the dimness of the night, as she passed the gates and came into view by the blaze of all the torches, and the lights in the windows, over the dark swarming crowds of the citizens.  Her white banner waving, her white armour shining, it was little wonder that the throng that filled the streets received the Maid “as if they had seen God descending among them.”  “And they had good reason,” says the Chronicle, “for they had suffered many disturbances, labours, and pains, and, what is worse, great doubt whether they ever should be delivered.  But now all were comforted, as if the siege were over, by the divine strength that was in this simple Maid whom they regarded most affectionately, men, women, and little children.  There was a marvellous press around her to touch her or the horse on which she rode, so much so that one of the torchbearers approached too near and set fire to her pennon; upon which she touched her horse with her spurs, and turning him cleverly, extinguished the flame, as if she had long followed the wars.”

There could have been nothing she resembled so much as St. Michael, the warrior-angel, who, as all the world knew, was her chief counsellor and guide, and who, no doubt, blazed, a familiar figure, from some window in the cathedral to which this his living picture rode without a pause, to give thanks to God before she thought of refreshment or rest.  She spoke to the people who surrounded her on every side as she went on through the tumultuous streets, bidding them be of good courage and that if they had faith they should escape from all their troubles.  And it was only after she had said her prayers and rendered her thanksgiving, that she returned to the house selected for her—­the house of an important personage, Jacques Boucher, treasurer to the Duke of Orleans, not like the humble places where she had formerly

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Jeanne D'Arc: her life and death from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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