The maid and the queen : the secret history of Joan of Arc and Yolande of Aragon / Nancy Goldstone
Publication year: 2011
Media class: Book
Publisher: London : Weidenfeld & Nicolson
How did an illiterate 17-year-old peasant girl manage to become one of histories most salient females? It is almost 600 years since Joan of Arc heard the voices of angels that would change her life forever: in a breathtaking story her quest saved France from English domination and restored France's hereditary monarchy. Just thirteen when her life changed forever, Joan's holy guidance led her on an arduous eleven-day journey into the unknown, restoring the Dauphin back to his original birthright in an official coronation where he was able to resume his rule as France's legitimate king. Joan summoned and led an impressive army of French loyalists against the English, marking the siege at Orleans as an exhilarating English defeat that would liberate the city. The following year witnessed Joan's capture by the enemy. After a series of heroic endeavours to escape cruel adversaries, she was subjected to trial by inquisition and then in Rouen, the heart of France, Joan's courageous journey came to a heartbreaking conclusion. This is the story at the core of centuries of myth-making. But what if we no longer accept this tale? What if we question whether the Heavens and their angels were truly Joan's only source of strength and power? What if we demand a different narrative? This revisionist biography unearths the secular and verifiable basis for Joan's heroic exploits: Yolande of Aragon, a forgotten mentor. This is a story of not one life, but two; two lives that together were intertwined in the restoration of France's greatness.