Strong women in History
I think about all the women that come to my mind right away when I think about strong women in history and I feel ashamed that the number is much fewer than the number of men that come to mind. That is probably social conditioning at school and at home, which led us to identify with the greatness of so many men who have pioneered some revolution or another. So today I set out to educate myself, I decided that I would try to learn about at least 50 more women who have helped shape the world for us. I'll post about them one by one, of course a lot of my research will be dependent on Wikipedia, but I'll make sure I reference it every time. So here is today's Strong woman of History, Saint Joan of Arc.
For me Joan of Arc is truly a strong woman, in that she was a warrior, and at the same time a teen-aged girl when she accomplished such feats of bravery that many men of her time were afraid of. She led the French army to about seven victories over the British forces during the hundred years war, and was thwarted in the end only by her own high standard of honor in war.
She claimed to have divine guidance and went to the Dauphin Charles, telling him of her vision The French army was in tatters and desperate for a victory and it was only because of this that Charles allowed her to lead the French army, that is right, the French army was being led by an illiterate farm girl.
Of course there needed to be, in those times, a record of her orthodoxy, lest the other kingdoms claim that Charles kingdom was from the devil. Her past morality was examined and she was declared to be of irreproachable life, a good Christian, possessed of the virtues of humility, honesty and simplicity.
Her victories in war were all offensive onslaughts that were tactically aware and were implemented precisely. Her doubter turned supporters after having worked with her and praised her work immensely. Her capture in the end was a result of blunders by the royal court, but she had to adhere to its command of stopping the march towards recovering Paris, since a truce had been negotiated with the Duke of Burgundy, which turned out to be a farce, as he was just using it as a stalling tactic to strengthen his forces at Paris. When the French did finally attack Paris, she was shot on the leg by a cross bow, but continued to lead the forces, but the following day the court ordered a retreat.
During the early part of 1430, she was involved in defending Compiegne against English and Burgundian forces. On 30 May 1430, in a rather risky skirmish, she was captured by a Burgundian faction during retreat because she chose to be the last to leave the battle field. Having been captured, it was tradition for the family of the prisoner to pay a ransom for their release, but Joan's family was poor and couldn't afford the ransom, it was widely thought that King Charles VII whom Joan had helped become king, would pay the ransom for her, but he never did anything of the sort.
She was eventually sold to the British Government that proclaimed her to be a heretic and burnt her at the stake without a fair trial. As she was being burnt, she had Jesus on her lips and she yelled his name six times before she passed away.
The Joan of Arc was declared innocent in 1456 and was pronounced a martyr. In 1909 she was beatified and was canonized in 1920. She is today one of 5 patron saints of France.
Saint Joan of Arc is the first of many women I intend to write about, more for my own knowledge sake than anything else. I hope all of you might find some people here that aren't as famous as Joan of Arc, but have in their own right directed the future of the world.
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