FOURTH PRIVATE EXAMINATION
The Deputy Inquisitor joins the Court.
Tuesday, March 13th, in the prison. Present: The Bishop and Brother Jean Lemaître, assisted by Jean Delafontaine, Nicolas Midi, and Gerard Feuillet; witnesses: Nicolas de Houbent and Ysambard de la Pierre.
The said Brother Jean Lemaître declared to Us that seeing the letter addressed to him which we had yesterday communicated, together with the other circumstances of the Process, and all being well considered, he joins himself to Us and is ready to proceed with Us according to law and right.
We, the Bishop, then made known with gentleness to Jeanne this intervention, exhorting and warning her, for the salvation of her soul, to speak the truth on all which should be asked of her.
The Deputy Inquisitor appoints his Officers.
Deliberations of March 13th.
And then, the Deputy of the Chief Inquisitor, wishing to proceed regularly in the Process, had declared his choice of the Officers whose names follow:
1. As Promoter from the Holy Inquisition, Messier Jean d’Estivet, Canon of the Churches of Bayeux and Beauvais.
2. As Registrar of his office, Messier Nicolas Taquel, Priest of the Diocese of Rouen, Notary Public and Registrar of the Archiepiscopal Court of Rouen.
3. As Executor of his Orders and Citations, Messier Jean Massieu, Priest.
4. As keepers of the prison, the noble man, John Grey, Squire of the Body Guard of Our Lord the King, and John Berwoit. These, We, the Bishop, had, with the exception of Messier Nicolas Taquel, but only in that which concerns Our office, already appointed to the same functions, as confirmed for Our part in the letters above quoted, and as confirmed by the said Inquisitor by his letters, of which mention follows. The said officers did then take oath, between the hands of the said Deputy, to faithfully fulfill their functions.
[Here follow the three letters of Nomination of the Promoter, d’Estivet; the Registrar, Taquel; and the Usher, Massieu: dated Tuesday, March 13th: signed Boisguillaume, Manchon: the nomination of Taquel, Registrar, is dated March 14th.]
All which precedes having already taken place, as has been said up to the present time, We, the Bishop, and Brother Jean Lemaître, Deputy of the Inquisitor, have from this moment proceeded together to all the remainder of the Process, and have questioned or caused questions to be made as it had begun.
Tuesday, March 13th. – Present: The Bishop, and Brother Jean Lemaître, Jean Delafontaine, Nicolas Midi, Gerard Feuillet; in the presence of Nicolas de Houbent and of Brother Ysambard de la Pierre.
By Our order, Jeanne was asked as follows:
“What was the sign you gave your King ?”
“Will you be satisfied that I should perjure myself?”
“Have you promised and sworn to Saint Catherine that you will not tell this sign?”
“I promised and swore not to tell this sign, and for my own sake, because I was pressed too much to tell it, and then I said to myself: ‘I promise not to speak of it to any one in the world.’ The sign was that an Angel assured my King, in bringing him the crown, that he should have the whole realm of France, by the means of God’s help and my labors; that he was to start me on the work – that is to say, to give me men-at-arms; and that otherwise he would not be so soon crowned and consecrated.”
“Have you spoken to Saint Catherine since yesterday?”
“I have heard her since yesterday, and she has several times told me to reply boldly to the Judges on what they shall ask me touching my Case.”
“How did the Angel carry the crown? and did he place it himself on your King’s head ?”
“The crown was given to an Archbishop – that is, to the Archbishop of Reims – so it seems to me, in the
presence of my King. The Archbishop received it, and gave it to the King. I was myself present. The crown was afterwards put among my King’s treasures.”
“To what place was the crown brought ?”
“To the King’s Chamber, in the Castle of Chinon.”
“What day and what time?”
“The day, I do not know; of the time, it was full day. I have no further recollection of it. Of the month
it was March or April, it seems to me. In this present month of March or next April it will be two years since. It was after Easter.”1
“Was it on the first day that you saw the sign when the King saw it?”
“Yes, he had it the same day.”
“Of what material was the said crown ?”
“It is well to know it was of fine gold; it was so rich that I do not know how to count its riches or to
appreciate its beauty. The crown signified that my King should possess the Kingdom of France.”
“Were there stones in it?”
“I have told you what I know about it.”
“Did you touch or kiss it?”
“Did the Angel who brought this crown come from Heaven or earth ?”
“He came from above, and I presume that he came by Our Lord’s command; he came in by the door of the room. When he came before my King, he did him reverence by bowing before him, and pronouncing the words I have already said; and at the same time the Angel put him in mind of the great patience he had had in presence of so many tribulations. From the door, the Angel walked, and touched the earth, in coming to the King.”
“What space was there between the door and the King?”
“My opinion is that there was quite the space of a lance-length [About 10 feet]; and he returned the way he came. When the Angel came, I accompanied him and went with him by the staircase to the King’s Chamber. The Angel went in first, then myself, and I said to the King: ‘Sire, there is your sign; take it.'”
“Where did the Angel appear to you ?”
“I was nearly always at prayer that God might send the sign to the King; and I was at my lodging, at the house of a worthy woman, near the Castle of Chinon, when he came; afterwards, we went together to the King. He was accompanied by other Angels whom no one saw. Had it not been for love of me, and to free me of trouble from those that accused me, I think that many who saw the Angel would not have seen him.”2
“Did all those who were with the King see the Angel?”
“I believe that the Archbishop of Reims saw him, and so did the Lords d’Alencon, la Tremouille, and Charles de Bourbon. As to the crown, many Clergy and others saw it who did not see the Angel.”
“Of what appearance, what height, was this Angel?”
“I have not permission to say; tomorrow I will answer about it.”
“All the Angels who accompanied him, had they the same appearance ?”
“Some resembled him well enough, others not: at least, so far as I saw. Some had wings, others were crowned. In company with them were Saint Catherine and Saint Margaret, who were with the Angel aforesaid, and the other Angels also, right up to the King’s Chamber.”
“How did the Angel leave you?”
“He left me in that little Chapel. I was much vexed at his going; I wept; willingly would I have gone with him – that is to say, my soul.”
“After the departure of the Angel, did you remain happy [or were you in great fear?”]3
“He did not leave me either in fear or terror ; but I was grieved at his going.”
“Is it for any merit of yours that God sent you this Angel?”
“He came for a great purpose: I was in hopes that the King would believe the sign, and that they would cease to argue with me, and would aid the good people of Orleans. The Angel came for the merits of the King and of the good Duke d’Orleans.”4
“Why to you rather than to another?”
“It has pleased God so to do by a simple maiden, in order to drive back the enemies of the King.”
“Was it told you whence the Angel had taken this crown?”
“It was brought from God; no goldsmith in the world would know how to fashion it so rich and fair.”
“Whence did he take it?”
“I refer me to God; and know nothing more of whence it was taken.”
“This crown, did it smell well and had it a good odor? did it glitter?”
“I do not remember about it; I will think it over. [Remembering:] “Yes, it smelt good, and will smell
good always, if it be well guarded, as it should be. It was in the form of a crown.”
“Did the Angel write you a letter?”
“What sign had your King and the people who were with him and yourself, to believe that it was an Angel?”
“The King believed it by the teaching of the Clergy who were there, and by the sign of the crown.”
“But how did the Clergy know it was an Angel?”
“By their knowledge and because they were clerks.”
“What have you to say about a married priest and a lost cup that you were to have pointed out?”5
“Of all this I know nothing, nor have I ever heard of it.”
“When you came before Paris, had you revelations from your Voices to go there?”
“No, I went at the request of the gentlemen who wished to make an attack or assault-at-arms; I intended
to go there and break through the trenches.”
“Had you any revelation to attack La Charite?”
“No, I went there at the request of the men-at-arms, as I said elsewhere.”
“Did you have any revelation to go to Pont l’Eveque?”6
“After I had, in the trenches of Melun, revelation that I should be taken, I consulted more often with the Captains of the army; but I did not tell them that this revelation [had come to me.”]7
“Was it well to attack the town of Paris on the day of the Festival of the Nativity of Our Lady?”
“It is well to observe the Festival of the Blessed Mary, and on my conscience it seems to me that it was, and ever will be, well to observe these festivals, from one end to the other.”
“Did you not say before Paris, ‘Surrender this town by order of Jesus’?”
“No, but I said, ‘Surrender it to the King of France.”
- (March 8th, 1428; it was before Easter, which in that year fell on March 27th.)
- (The house in which Jeanne lodged at Chinon is said to have belonged to a certain Regnier de la Barrier, whose widow or daughter is the "worthy woman" referred to. Jeanne was afterwards lodged in the Tower of Coudray, where her room may still be seen. It is approached by a staircase outside the tower. The vaulted roof has fallen in, and the fireplace is damaged, but the walls are intact, and the room could easily be restored. Jeanne stayed in this tower from March 8th to April 20th, 1429.)
- (In the Minute only.)
- (Charles, Duke d'Orleans, then a prisoner in England: one of the five princes of the blood taken at Agincourt.)
- (There is no allusion to either of these in any evidence of the time.)
- ( 2 May, 1430.)
- (Easter week, April 16th-23rd, 1430.)