January,2012 is the 600th anniversary of Joan of Arc's birth.
"She (Joan of Arc) remains one of the most myth-generating, true-life heroines in French history. She was physically strong and emotionally independent, vowing to stay virginal because she took her orders from God. Although she was an illiterate country girl, she was smart enough to convince her parents that voices from Heaven were telling her to leave home and restore the king to his throne. She sweet-talked the man who would be king into giving her money, horses, weapons and soldiers to rid France of its English invaders. She lifted the siege of Orléans and led the way for him to be crowned King Charles VII at Reims. Then she was captured, sold to the English, tried and convicted. Forced into a dress, she was burned at the stake in 1431. She was 19."
I did not realize she died so young.
The photo was taken in Quebec City.
(excerpts from the article The Koan of Joan by Elaine Sciolino, January 6, 2012)