Joan of Arc Martyr

Joan of Arc at the stake
Joan of Arc right before burning at the stake

The Death of Joan of Arc

May 30, 1431 would be a day that would forever live in infamy in France. For it was on this day that the death of Joan of Arc be conducted through burning Joan of Arc at the stake. Joan of Arc's death would prove to be one of the greatest injustices in the Middle Ages, and it was not until 25 years later that she was found innocent of all heresy charges by the Pope himself.

Since heresy was a capital crime only when it was a repeat offense, the court of the English for the trial of Joan of Arc stated that Joan of Arc had heard voices a second time while in prison. On top of that, she had stopped wearing men's clothing while in prison until she was molested, after which she began to wear men's clothing again, helping the charge of the English against her for heresy.

The death of Joan of Arc would be conducted, with Joan of Arc at the stake, on May 30, 1431. She was tied to a tall pillar in the Vieux-Marche in Rouen, where she asked two of the clergy present to hold a crucifix before her. Feeling pity for her, a peasant made a small cross that Joan of Arc put in the front of her dress. When Joan of Arc burned at the stake, witnesses said she met it with composure and bravery, causing many to feel that there was a horrible injustice against this young woman.

After Joan of Arc died, the English raked the coals and ashes to expose her charred body to show that she had not escaped alive. They needed Joan of Arc's death to be proven beyond a doubt to keep her from becoming Joan of Arc the Martyr.

Then, the English burned the body twice more to ashes to prevent the collection of ashes from the death of Joan of Arc. After Joan of Arc was burned at the stake two times, they took the ashes and threw them into the Seine as a final injustice against this woman who had attempted to free her people.

Heresy was the charge during the trial of Joan of Arc; many believed she had actually spoken to God. Even the executioner, Geoffroy Therage, later said that after Joan of Arc died, he greatly feared being damned for his part to play in helping Joan of Arc be burned at the stake.

Joan of Arc's trial and Joan of Arc's death at the stake would forever be seen as examples of someone dying for something they believe in and being remembered throughout history for it.

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