Monday, 1 October 2012

Great Golden Statue, Joan of Arc

Joan of Arc (1412-1431)

Joan of Arc is one of my favourite landmarks in Paris. She sits on her golden horse, outside the Hôtel Régina in the heart of the city, looking confident, capable and courageous.

The sculptor was Emmanuel Frémiet (December 6, 1824 - 1910).  I think he did a great job and deserves more recognition.

Emmanuel Frémiet

Of course, we have no idea what Joan really looked like, so you can pick the version you prefer.

This is the earliest depiction of Joan of Arc although it was done without the artist
ever having seen her.  Drawing by Clément de Fauquembergue, 1429.

Another version c. 1485 

Yet another version - Ingrid Bergman in the role.

I’d like to think she looked like Ingrid Bergman but I have my doubts. Not to say the real Joan wasn’t fantastic and all, but she was a bit on the odd side…. I’m not judging you understand but there are medical reports and not everyone is convinced she was altogether there. Ingrid looks decidedly in control.

It’s interesting that the transcripts of her trial can be found at St. Joan of Arc’s Trials

I’m still impressed that we can read 600 year old transcripts without so much as leaving our chairs. The French sure know how to keep history!

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