Heroes of the Dark Ages
William the Conqueror-King John-Joan of Arc
"War... is harmful, not only to the conquered but to the conqueror."
Battle of Hastings
John became King of England upon the death of his brother Richard the Lion-Hearted in 1199. John also became Duke of Normandy and Count of Anjou. John wasn't known as a great king. In 1202, one of the barons of England filed a complaint on him and persuaded King Philip II that John was unfit to manage some of his french lands. John was forced to give away some of his land in France, he offered to give lane to Arthur, his nephew,but he wanted to keep Normandy for himself. Later, Arthur disappeared and rumors were passed stating that John killed him. The Barons were angry about how John handled the situation and the lands of Anjou and Normandy were lost. In 1207, issues between the Pope and John on deciding the next archbishop of Canterbury led England to be banned from church services. The Pope later excommunicated John in 1209. A few years later in 1213 they made peace, and John regained his support.
King John was very disliked among the people of England. John enforced a large tax on the people of England to fund the war against King Philip II. John was unable to reclaim the lands he lost to Philip and the barons were angry. In 1215, a group of barons revolted against John and forced him to sign a document known as the Magna Carta. The Magna Carta limited the power of a king so that there would never be a cruel king like John. The most significant accomplishment King John had was signing the Magna Carta. Overall King John was one of England's worse king.
"To no one will we sell, to no one will we refuse or delay right or justice.".
Joan of Arc
Joan of Arc was a peasant who didn't know how to read or write. As a child the only the she had was a strong faith. Joan and her mother were devoted Catholics. She became more than a catholic when she started seeing and hearing visions from saints. The visions led Joan to believe that God gave her a mission to free France from England. In 1429, Joan asked a french commander to take her to see King Charles and later the commander took her. The king was desperate for aid so he was willing to speak to her. Before the Charles spoke to her, he tested her by switching places with a noble. Joan realized the “king” was not the king and pointed out the “real” king. King Charles was amazed by Joan's unusual powers, and gave her some armor, a banner, and an army to lead. In April 1429, Joan led her army to Orléans to reclaim the land back from the English. At first, the commanders were uncomfortable when following her commands then they realized her plans worked well. Ten days later she reclaimed Orléans.
“One life is all we have and we live it as we believe in living it. But to sacrifice what you are and to live without belief, that is a fate more terrible than dying."
-Joan of Arc
Siege of Orléans
After the Siege of Orléans, Joan persuaded Charles to get a proper coronation. They traveled to the Cathedral in Riems and won several battles going through the enemy territory. On July 17th 1429, Joan stood next to Charles as he had a proper coronation and became King of France. After the coronation, Joan was eager to reclaim Paris. Charles wasn't to sure if it would be a good thing to do but he allowed her to try. Joan was wounded in one of the battles near Paris and was captured by burgundians in May 1430. The burgundians sold Joan to England and she was put on trial. English tried her for witchcraft and heresy and she was burned on the stake on May 30th 1431.
In 1455, 24 years after Joan's death, her mother asked for a retrial. Pope Callistus III gave her a new hearing and the Pope found her not guilty. In 1920, Pope Benedict XV declared Joan of Arc to be a saint.