Joan of Arc - Maid of Heaven

Joan of Arc's Sword


Joan of Arc and Her Sword Statue
"When I was at Tours or at Chinon I sent to seek a sword which was in the church of Saint Catherine of Fierbois, behind the alter, and it was found at once all covered with rust."
Joan of Arc talking about her sword at her trial in Rouen

Joan of Arc had several swords that she carried from time to time but the most famous was the sword she obtained from the church of Saint Catherine of Fierbois which legend has it once belonged to Charles Martel who left it there as an offering of thanks for his victory at the Battle of Tours over the Saracens in 732 that permanently halting the Muslim invasion of Europe. Joan herself testified at her trial about the miraculous way that this sword was found and sent to her:
"This sword was in the earth, all rusty, and there were upon it five crosses, and I knew it by my voices and I had never seen the man who went to seek this sword. I wrote to the prelates of the place that if they please I should have the sword and they sent it to me. It was not very deep under ground behind the alter, as it seems to me, but I do not know exactly whether it was before or behind the altar. After this sword was found, the prelates of the place had it rubbed, and at once the rust fell from it without difficulty. There was an arms merchant of tours who went to seek it, and the prelates of that place gave me a sheath, and those of Tours also, with them, had two sheathes made for me: one of red velvet and the other of cloth-of-gold, and I myself had another made of right strong leather. But when I was captured, it was not that sword which I had. I always wore that sword until I had withdrawn from Saint-Denis after the assault against Paris."
Shield displaying the Coat of Arms of Joan of Arc


Joan later stated that she preferred to carry her banner into battle instead of her sword so that she would not have to kill anyone. "I loved my banner forty times better than my sword. And when I went against my enemy, I carried my banner myself, lest I kill any. I have never killed anyone."

Statue of Joan of Arc on horseback holding sword

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