The Trial of Jeanne D’Arc
Wednesday, April 18th. Jeanne is charitably exhorted
Therefore on Wednesday, April 18th, 1431, we the said judges, knowing from the
deliberations and opinions of many doctors of sacred theology and of canon law, of
licentiates in law and graduates of the other faculties, the great number of serious
errors discovered in the answers and assertions of the said Jeanne, and knowing
that if she did not correct herself she exposed herself to grave perils: for these
reasons we decided to exhort her charitably and gently admonish her, and to have
her admonished gently by many men of honesty and learning, doctors and others,
in order to lead her back to the way of truth and a sincere profession of the faith.
To this end we did this day repair to the place of her prison, accompanied by
Guillaume Le Boucher, Jacques de Touraine, Maurice du Quesnay, Nicolas Midi,
Guillaume Adelie, and Gerard Feuillet, doctors, and William Haiton, bachelor of
In their presence we the said bishop addressed the said Jeanne, who then said she
was ill: we told her that the said masters and doctors had come in all friendliness
and charity to visit her in her illness, to comfort and console her. Then we reminded
her that for many different days in the presence of many learned persons she had
been examined on grave and difficult questions concerning the faith, to which she
had given varied and divergent answers which wise and learned men
considering and examining diligently had found to contain words and confessions
that from the point of view of the faith were dangerous; but because she was an
unlettered and ignorant woman we offered to provide her with wise and learned
men, upright and kindly, who could duly instruct her.
We exhorted the doctors and masters then present to give salutary counsel to this
Jeanne for the salvation of her body and soul and to conform to the duty of
faithfulness which bound them to the true doctrine of the faith. If Jeanne knew
others apt for this we offered to send them to her so that they should give her
advice and instruction upon what she should do, maintain and believe. We added
that we were clergy, that we were by our vocation, will, and inclination, disposed to
seek the salvation of the soul and assure that of the body by all possible means, as
we should do it for our nearest and for ourselves. That we should be happy each
day to furnish her with such men as would instruct her duly, and in a word to
perform for her all the Church is accustomed to do in such circumstances, for she
does not shut the fold against the lamb who would return. Finally we told the said
Jeanne to take good account of the present admonition and to put it into effect.
For if she should act in opposition thereto, trusting to her own mind and her
inexperienced head, we should be compelled to abandon her; that she must
therefore see the peril which would result to her in that case; which, with all our
might and affection, we hoped to avoid.
To which Jeanne answered that she thanked us for what we said of her salvation,
and added: "It seems to me, seeing how ill I am, that I am in great danger of
death: if it be that God desires to do His pleasure on me, I ask to receive
confession and my Saviour also, and a burial in holy ground."
Then she was told that if she wished to receive the sacraments of the Church, she
must do as good Catholics are in
duty bound, and must submit to the holy Church, and if she persisted in her
intention not to submit to the Church she would not be allowed to receive the
sacraments she asked for, except the sacrament of penance, which we were
always ready to administer. But she answered: "I cannot now tell you anything
She was told that the more she feared for her life because of her illness, the more
she ought to amend that life; that she would not enjoy the rights of the Church as
a Catholic if she did not submit to the Church. She answered: "If my body dies in
prison, I trust you will have it buried in holy ground; if you do not, I put my trust in
She was told that in her trial she had said that if she had done or said anything
contrary to our Christian faith ordained by God she would not wish to sustain it.
She answered: "I refer me to the answer which I made and to Our Lord."
Then, as she had professed to have many revelations from God through the
medium of St. Michael, St. Catherine and St. Margaret, she was asked this
question: "If some good creature were to come to you and affirm that he had
received revelations from God concerning your mission, would you believe him?"
She answered that no Christian in the world could come to her saying he had a
revelation about her but she would know whether he was speaking the truth or
not; she would know it through St. Catherine and St. Margaret.
Asked whether she thought God could reveal nothing to a good creature which she
would not know, she answered that she knew well that He could. "But " she added
"I should not believe any man or woman if I had no sign."
Asked whether she believed that the Holy Scriptures were revealed by God, she
answered: "You know it well, it is good to know that it was."
Then she was summoned, exhorted and required to take
the good counsel of the clergy and notable doctors and trust in it for the salvation
of her soul. She was asked if she would submit her acts and sayings to the Church
Militant, and answered in the end: "Whatever happens to me I will do and say
nothing except what I have already said in the trial."
Whereupon the venerable doctors above mentioned who were present exhorted
her as urgently as they could, to submit herself and her sayings to the Church
Militant, citing in explanation to her many authorities and examples from the Holy
Scriptures. And in particular one of the doctors [master Nicolas Midi], in his
exhortation, quoted this passage from St. Matthew, chapter xviii. "If thy brother
shall trespass against thee, etc.," and also, "If he neglect to hear the Church, let
him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican." This was explained to Jeanne
in French, and she was finally told that if she would not submit to the Church and
obey it she would be abandoned as an infidel.
To which the said Jeanne answered that she was a good Christian, and had been
properly baptized, and so she would die a good Christian.
Asked why, since she requested the Church to administer the sacrament of the
Eucharist to her, she would not submit to the Church Militant, as then she had been
promised the sacrament, she answered that she would not reply other than she
had already done on the question of submission; she loved God, was a good
Christian and desired to aid and support Holy Church with all her strength.
Asked if she did not wish a fine and distinguished procession to be ordained to
restore her to a good estate if she were not therein, she answered that she much
desired the Church and the Catholics to pray for her.
Wednesday, May 2nd. Public Admonition of The Maid
On Wednesday, May 2nd, in the year of Our Lord 1431, we the said judges held
session in the room of the castle of Rouen near the great hall of the castle,
assisted by the reverend fathers, lords and masters assembled at our order:
Nicolas de Jumièges, Guillaume de Cormeilles, abbots, doctors of law; the abbot of
St. Ouen, the prior of St. Lô, and Pierre, prior of Longueville; Jean de Nibat,
Jacques Guesdon, Jean Footer, Maurice du Quesnay, Jean Le Fèvre, Guillaume Le
Boucher, Pierre Houdenc, Jean de Châtillon, Erard Emengart, Richard Prati, Jean
Carpentier, and Pierre Maurice, doctors; Nicolas Couppequesne, William Haiton,
Thomas de Courcelles, Richard de Grouchet, Pierre Minier, Raoul Le Sauvage, Jean
Pigache, Jean Maugier, and Jean Eude, bachelors of sacred theology; Raoul
Roussel, treasurer of the cathedral of Rouen, doctor of canon and civil laws; Jean
Garin, doctor of canon law; Robert Le Barbier, Denis Gastinel, Jean Le Doulx,
licentiates of canon and civil laws; Nicolas de Venderès, archdeacon of Eu, Jean
Pinchon, archdeacon of Josas; Jean Bruillot, chantry priest of the church of Rouen;
Richard des Saulx, Laurent du Busc, Aubert Morel, Jean Duchemin, Jean Colombel,
Raoul Anguy, Jean Le Tavernier, Guérould Poustel, licentiates of canon law; André
archdeacon of Petit-Caux; Jean Alespée, Gilles Deschamps, chancellor, Nicolas
Caval, canons of the cathedral of Rouen; Guillaume de Livet, Pierre Carel, Geoffroy
du Crotay; Bureau de Cormeilles, licentiate in civil laws; Guillaume Desjardins, Jean
Tiphaine, doctors of medicine; brother Ysambard de La Pierre, Guillaume Legrant,
Jean de Rosay, curate of Duclair, brother Jean Des Bats, Eustache Cateleu,
Regnault Lejeune, Jean Mahommet, Guillaume Le Cauchois, Jean Le Tonnellier,
Laurent Leduc, priests.
We the said bishop addressed the said lords and masters as follows:
"After she had been thoroughly interrogated this woman replied to the articles
judicially prepared against her by the Promoter, and we sent the digest of her
confessions, drawn up and summarized in the form of twelve articles, to doctors
and other persons learned in canon and civil law for the purpose of obtaining their
advice. Already we have adequately perceived that in the opinion and decision of
many this woman appears reprehensible in many points, although the case has not
finally been decided by us; and before we come to a final judgment many honest,
conscientious and learned men have thought it expedient to endeavor by every
possible means to instruct this woman on the points in which she seems to be in
error, and, as far as we are able, to bring her back to the way and knowledge of
truth. This end we have always desired and still with all our strength desire to
attain. This also we ought all to seek, especially we who live in the Church and for
the ministration of holy things: we ought to show her in all charity wherein her acts
and sayings are out of harmony with the faith, truth, and religion, and charitably
warn her to consider her salvation. To this end we first tried to lead her back by
means of many notable doctors of theology
whom we sent to her on many different days; they gave themselves with all
possible zeal to this work though they did not coerce her. But the cunning of the
Devil prevailed and they have not yet been of any effect. When we perceived that
private admonitions bore no fruit, it appeared to us opportune that this woman
should by you in solemn assembly be gently and charitably admonished to amend:
since perhaps your presence and the exhortations of some among you will more
easily induce her to humility and obedience, and dissuade her from too much
reliance on her own opinion, so that she will give credence to the advice of worthy
and learned men, versed in divine and human laws, and will not expose herself to
perils so great that they endanger her body and soul.
"To address this solemn admonition to her we have appointed an old and learned
master of theology, one particularly understanding in these matters, namely Jean
de Châtillon, archdeacon of Évreux, who, if it so please him, will accept the present
task of demonstrating to this woman certain points on which she is in error,
according to the counsel and consultations we have received from the said
authorities, and he will persuade her to abandon her faults and errors and will show
her the way of truth. Now therefore this woman will be brought before you and be
admonished: if any among you thinks he can say or do any good thing to facilitate
her return or helpfully instruct her for the salvation of her body and soul, we pray
him not to hesitate to speak to us or to the assembly."
When Jeanne was led in before us and the judges on this day, we, bishop, in our
name and on behalf of the Vice-Inquisitor her judge with us, counseled her to
attend to the advice and warnings which the lord archdeacon, professor of sacred
theology, would address to her, as he was about to
utter many things profitable for the salvation of her body and soul, to which she
must agree, for if she did not she lay herself open to peril of body and soul: and we
explained many things to the said Jeanne, according to the tenor of the
Then we the said judges required the lord archdeacon to proceed charitably to the
said admonitions. In obedience to our order the lord archdeacon, beginning to
teach and instruct the said Jeanne, explained to her that all faithful Christians were
compelled and obliged to believe and hold firmly the Christian faith and its articles;
and he warned and required her in a general admonition to correct and reform
herself, her words and her deeds, in accordance with the advice of the venerable
doctors and masters who were learned in divine, canon and civil law.
To this general monition Jeanne answered, "Read your book," meaning the scrip
the lord archdeacon held in his hand, "and then I will answer you. I trust in God my
creator for everything. I love Him with my whole heart."
And when she was asked if she had anything further to say in answer to this
general monition, she answered: "I trust in my Judge. He is the King of Heaven and
Then the lord archdeacon proceeded to the particular monitions which he had to
address to Jeanne, according to the tenor of the following memorandum. He
I. In the first place he reminded her that she had recently said that if anything evil
were found in her acts and sayings which the clergy pointed out to her, she would
desire to correct herself in that respect. This was a good and laudable thing to say,
for every Christian must be meek, ever ready to obey those who are wiser than
he, and give greater credit to the judgment of good and learned men than to his
own. Since then the acts and words of this woman had been diligently
gently examined for many days by doctors and clergy, who had found in them
many grave deficiencies: yet, if she wished to reform, as a good devout Christian
must, the clergy were always ready to act towards her in all mercy and charity to
effect her salvation. If, however, out of arrogant and haughty pride she desired to
persist in her own views, and imagine she understood matters of faith better than
doctors and learned men, she would expose herself to grave danger.
II. He explained to her, in respect of the revelations and visions she professed to
have, that she would not submit to the Church Militant or any living man, but
intended to refer herself to God alone in respect of her acts and sayings. He
expounded to her on this point the nature of the Church Militant, the authority it
derives from God, in Whom its power resides; how every Christian is bound to
believe that the Holy Church is one and Catholic, that the Holy Spirit governs it, and
it never errs or falls into error; that every Catholic is bound to obey it as a son his
mother, and must submit all his acts and sayings to its judgment: that none,
whatever his apparitions or revelations, must on their account withdraw from the
judgment of the Church, since the apostles submitted their writings to the Church
and that the whole Scripture, which is revealed by God, is sent for our belief by our
mother the Church as an infallible guide to which we ought to conform in all things
without schism or division of any kind, as St. Paul the apostle teaches in many
passages. Moreover, every revelation from God leads us to preserve meekness
and obedience towards our superiors, and never otherwise: for our Lord never
desired any one to presume to call himself subject to God alone or to refer himself
in respect of his acts or sayings to Him only. Indeed, he committed and gave into
the hands of the clergy the authority and power to know and judge the deeds of
the faithful, whether they
were good or evil: who scorned them, scorned God; who listened to them listened
to God. Finally he warned her that she must believe that the Catholic Church is
incapable of error or false judgment, for he who does not hold this belief infringes
the article Unam Sanctam which had been explained to her in detail: and he who
persists in denying it must be accounted a heretic. He who does not is schismatic,
and shows himself an evil thinker in respect of the holiness of the Church and the
infallible direction of the Holy Spirit, and the canon laws lay it down that heavy
punishment must be inflicted upon such wanderers.
III. She was shown how for a long time she persisted in wearing man's dress, in
the fashion of men-at-arms, and continually and needlessly wears it still, contrary
to the honesty of her sex: which is scandalous and against good living and custom;
and she wore her hair cut round. All these habits are contrary to the
commandments of God declared in Deuteronomy, chapter xxii. "The woman shall
not wear, etc.," contrary to the instruction of the Apostle who says that woman
shall veil her head, and to the prohibitions of the Church uttered in the holy Council
General, to the teaching of saints, and of doctors in canon and civil law: and are of
evil example to other women. And especially the said Jeanne was in error when out
of a strange insistence upon her disgraceful dress she preferred not to receive the
sacrament of the Eucharist at the time ordained of the Church rather than put off
this dress and put on another in which she might receive the sacrament reverently
and decently: scorning the command of the Church in order to satisfy such an
insistent desire, although she had been often warned on this point, particularly
about Easter, when she declared she greatly desired to hear Mass and receive
Communion. Then we told her to resume woman's dress, which she had and still
do: in which in our opinion she gravely erred. Therefore she was admonished to
change these things and put off her male costume.
IV. The said Jeanne, not content to wear this costume with the aforesaid
aggravating circumstances, even wished to up. hold that in this she acted wisely
and did not err. But to say that one is acting well when one goes against the
teaching of the saints, against the commandments of God and His apostles, in
scorn of the teachings of the Church, out of mere obstinacy in wearing a dishonest
and indecent dress, is to deviate from the faith; and he who sustains it falls into
heresy. Moreover, she desired to attribute the responsibility for her sins to God and
His saints: wherein she blasphemed God and His saints by attributing unseemly
things to them: for they wish all honesty to be preserved and all perversities and
sins avoided, nor would they have the commandments of the Church disdained for
such ends. Therefore he admonished her to cease from pronouncing such
blasphemies, from rashly attributing such thoughts to God and His saints, and from
maintaining them as lawful.
V. Many doctors and notable ecclesiastics have considered and examined with
diligence the statements of the said Jeanne concerning her revelations and
apparitions, and in view of the manifest falsehoods regarding the crown brought to
Charles, and the coming of the angels, which she had invented, falsehoods and
imaginations which have been recognized as such, both by those who afterwards
were of our party and by others; in view also of her statements touching the
kisses and embraces she gave to St. Catherine and St. Margaret, who, if she were
believed, came to her every day, and even many times daily with no special
intention or apparent manifestation, when there was no reason why they should
come so frequently, and no precedent of saints revealing themselves
in such miraculous apparitions; considering that she said she knew nothing of their
limbs or any other details of their person, except their head, which does not accord
with such frequent visions, in view also of many commands she declares they gave
her, such as to wear man's dress, and to make such answers as she did in the trial,
commands not in accord with God and His saints and which cannot be allowed to
have emanated from them; in view finally of numerous other points which the
doctors and learned men have well weighed in this matter: they see and recognize
that such revelations and apparitions were not sent from God as she boasts. And
then she was shown how dangerous in the extreme it was to believe audaciously
that one is fit to receive such apparitions and revelations, for she lied in respect of
things in the province of God, falsely prophesying and telling of things to come,
which power God had not granted her, but she discovered it in the imaginations of
her heart; and from it nothing can ensue but the seduction of the people, the
springing up of new sects and many other ills inclining to the overthrow of the
Church and the Catholic people.
And how grave and dangerous it is to search curiously into the things passing our
understanding, to put faith in what is new without consulting the opinion of the
Church and its prelates; and even to invent new and unaccustomed things, for
devils are wont to insinuate themselves into this kind of oddity, either by occult
instigation or by visible apparitions in which they transform themselves into angels
of light, and beneath an appearance of piety or some other good they lead one on
to pernicious pacts, plunge one into error, as is permitted by God to punish the
presumption of those who allow themselves to be carried away by such things.
Therefore he admonished her to renounce these vain imaginations,
to cease propagating such falsehoods, and to return to the way of truth.
VI. These revelations so invented had been as it were the root which had induced
her to so many other crimes, and so, usurping the office of God, she had not
hesitated to announce and affirm future and contingent events, the presence of
hidden objects, such as a sword buried in the ground; and further she had boasted
of knowing with certainty that some people were loved by God; and for her own
part she knew she would receive forgiveness for the sin she had committed by
hurling herself from the tower of Beaurevoir: which was nothing but divination,
presumption and rashness. She said also that she had adored these novel things
which appeared to her, although she had concerning them no sufficient proof for
her to believe that they were good spirits; that she had not taken the counsel of
priests or any other ecclesiastic on this point, but presumed too much upon
herself, in a matter wherein the danger of idolatry is ever imminent: she had rashly
believed where she should not have given. the faintest credence, even if there were
a sort of reality in these apparitions (which nevertheless to our mind are false).
Moreover, she dared to say that she believed these apparitions to be St. Catherine
and St. Margaret and angels as firmly as she believed in the Catholic faith; wherein
she showed a rash credulity and appeared to indicate that there is no more or
stronger reason to believe in the Christian faith and its articles, which the Church
has handed down to us, than in certain apparitions of a new and unaccustomed
kind. In this she had no judgment or consultation of the Church: further, Christ and
His saints teach that it is not meet to give faith lightly to such apparitions, and she
was told to consider these things carefully.
Whilst the archdeacon was explaining all this to Jeanne
in French, according to the text of the memorandum, she answered as follows:
And first, concerning the first and second articles of this memorandum, she said:
"As I have answered you before, so I will answer you now."
And when she had been told of the nature of the Church Militant, and had been
admonished to believe and hold the article Unam Sanctam, and that she must
submit to the Church Militant according to the tenor of Article II of the memorial,
she answered: "I believe indeed in the Church on earth; but for my words and
deeds, as I have already declared, I trust in and refer me to God." Then she said: "I
believe that the Church Militant cannot err or fail; but in respect of my deeds and
words I submit them and refer in everything to God who caused me to do what I
have done." She said she submitted to God her creator who had caused her to do
those things, and referred herself to Him and to her own self concerning them. '
Asked if she wished to say that she had no judge on earth and whether our Holy
Father the Pope were not her judge, she answered: "I will not say anything more. I
have a good master, Our Lord, to whom I refer everything, and to none other."
When she was told that if she would not believe in the Church and the article Unam
Sanctam Ecclesiam Catholicam she would be a heretic, and would suffer the
punishment of fire by the sentence of other judges, she answered: "I will say no
more to you: and if I saw the fire, I should say all that I do now to you, and
Asked whether if the General Council, or Our Holy Father the Pope, the cardinals
and other ecclesiastics were present, she would submit and refer herself to the said
General Council she answered: "You will get nothing further from me."
Asked if she would submit to Our Holy Father the Pope, she answered, "Take me
to him, and I will reply to him," and would make no other answer.
In respect of what was said of her dress in Articles III and IV, she answered that as
for her dress she would willingly take a long dress and a woman's hood and go to
Church and receive the sacrament of the Eucharist, as she had formerly said,
provided that immediately after her return she might take it off and wear her
present dress. And when it was explained to her that she was in no need of
wearing this dress, particularly in prison, she said: "When I have done what God
sent me to do I will resume woman's dress."
Asked if she thought she was doing well to wear man's dress, she answered: "I
refer me to Our Lord."
Then when she was admonished and the contents of the fourth article were
explained to her, she answered that she had blasphemed neither God nor His
saints. And admonished to discontinue the wearing of this dress* and the belief
that it was good to wear it, and advised to resume woman's dress, she said she
would not do otherwise.
Asked whether whenever St. Catherine or St. Margaret came to her she made the
sign of the cross, she answered that sometimes she did, and sometimes she did
Asked about what she had been told regarding her revelations in Article V of the
memorandum, she answered that on that question she referred herself to her
judge, namely God. She said her revelations came to her from God direct.
Asked, concerning the sign given to her king, whether she would defer to the
archbishop of Reims, to the Sire de Boussac, to Charles de Bourbon, to the Sire de
la Trémouille and to Étienne called La Hire, to whom or to some of whom she said
she had shown the crown, since they were present when the angel brought it to
him she calls her king and gave
it to the archbishop; asked whether she would refer to others of her party writing
under their seal of this matter, she answered: "Give me a messenger and I will
write to them about this trial." Otherwise she would not believe in or refer to them.
Asked, with regard to the sixth article, about [the temerity of her belief and] her
presumption in prophesying of future and contingent events, she answered: I refer
me to my judge, that is to God, and to my earlier answers written in this book."
Asked whether if she were sent three or four clergy of her own party under a safe
conduct she would refer herself to them concerning the apparitions and all that was
contained in the trial, she replied that we should first let them come and then she
would answer: otherwise she would not refer herself or submit to them in this trial.
Asked whether she would refer herself and submit to the church of Poitiers where
she was examined, she answered: "Do you think you will catch me in that way and
draw me to you so?"
Then in conclusion she was abundantly admonished anew in general to submit to
the Church under pain of being abandoned by the Church; for if the Church
abandoned her she would be in great peril of body and soul, her soul would be in
danger of eternal fire and her body of temporal fire by the sentence of other
judges. She answered: "You will not do as you say against me without evil
overtaking you, in body and soul."
Asked to give at least one reason why she would not refer herself to the Church,
she would make no other reply.
Whereupon many doctors and learned men of divers estates and faculties
admonished and charitably guided her, exhorting her to submit to the Church
Universal and Militant, to Our Holy Father the Pope, to the sacred General Council,
and explaining to her the perils of body and soul to which she exposed herself by
her refusal to submit her acts and sayings to the Church Militant. She answered as
Finally we the said bishop told Jeanne to be sure to take into serious account the
said admonitions, our counsel and charitable exhortations, and to change her mind.
She answered by the question: "How long will you give me to think it over?" We
told her that she must think it over immediately and answer as she wished: but as
she made no further reply we left the place and the said Jeanne was taken back to
Wednesday, May 9th. She is threatened with torture
On Wednesday, May 9th of the same year, Jeanne was brought into the great
tower of the castle of Rouen before us the said judges and in the presence of the
reverend father,, lord abbot of St. Carmel de Compiègne, of masters Jean de
Châtillon and Guillaume Erart, doctors of sacred theology, of André Marguerie and
Nicolas de Venderès, archdeacons of the church of Rouen, of William Haiton,
bachelor of theology, Aubert Morel, licentiate in canon law; Nicolas Loiseleur, canon
of the cathedral of Rouen, and master Jean Massieu.
And Jeanne was required and admonished to speak the truth on many different
points contained in her trial which she had denied or to which she had given false
replies, whereas we possessed certain information, proofs, and vehement
presumptions upon them. Many of the points were read and explained to her, and
she was told that if she did not confess them truthfully she would be put to the
torture, the instruments of which were shown to her all ready in the tower. There
were also present by our instruction men ready to put her to the torture in order
to restore her to the way and knowledge of truth, and by this means to procure
the salvation of her body and soul which by her lying inventions she exposed to
such grave perils.
To which the said Jeanne answered in this manner: "Truly
if you were to tear me limb from limb and separate my soul from my body, I would
not tell you anything more: and if I did say anything, I should afterwards declare
that you had compelled me to say it by force." Then she said that on Holy Cross
Day last she received comfort from St. Gabriel: she firmly believes it was St.
Gabriel, she knew by her voices it was he. She said she asked counsel of her
voices whether she should submit to the Church since the clergy were pressing her
hard to submit: her voices told her that if she desired Our Lord to aid her she must
wait upon Him in all her doings. She said that Our Lord has always been the master
of her doings, and the Enemy never had power over them. She asked her voices if
she would be burned and they answered that she must wait upon God, and He
would aid her.
When asked about the crown she said she had given to the archbishop of Reims,
and whether she would refer herself to him, she answered: "Send him here [and let
me hear him speak]: and then I will answer you. He dare not deny what I have told
But seeing the hardness of her heart and her manner of answering, we the said
judges, fearing that the torments of torture would be of little profit to her, decided
to postpone their application until we had received more complete advice on the
Saturday, May 12th. Jeanne is not to be tortured
On Saturday following, May 12th, in our episcopal dwelling at Rouen, before us the
said judges and in the presence of the venerable masters Raoul Roussel, treasurer,
Nicolas de Venderès and André Marguerie, archdeacons and canons of Rouen;
Guillaume Erart, master of theology; Robert Le Barbier, Denis Gastinel, Jean Le
Doulx, and Aubert Morel, licentiates in canon law; Thomas de Courcelles, Nicolas
bachelors of sacred theology; Nicolas Loiseleur and brother Ysambard de La Pierre.
We the said bishop recalled what had taken place on the previous Wednesday, and
we asked the counsel of the assessors on what remained to be done, in particular
if it was expedient to put Jeanne to the torture.
[And first the said Raoul Roussel stated that he thought it was not expedient, lest a
trial so well conducted should be exposed to calumny.
Master Nicolas de Venderès said he thought it was not yet expedient to put her to
Master André Marguerie said it was not yet expedient.
Master Guillaume Erart said it was needless to put her to the torture, sufficient
matter was possessed without it.
Master Robert Le Barbier gave a similar opinion; but thought she should again be
charitably admonished, once and for all, to submit to the Church. If she would not,
then in God's name the proceedings should continue.
Master Denis Gastinel said it was not expedient.
Master Aubert Morel said he thought it expedient to put her to the torture in order
to discover the truth of her lies.
Master Thomas de Courcelles said he thought it wise to torture her. She ought also
to be examined whether she would submit to the judgment of the Church.
Master Nicolas Couppequesne said it is not expedient to put her to the torture, but
she should, once more, be charitably admonished of the necessity of submitting to
the decision of the Church.
Master Jean Le Doulx, similarly.
Brother Ysambard de La Pierre, similarly; but for the last time she should be
admonished to submit to the Church Militant.
Master Nicolas Loiseleur said he thought it good for the
health of her soul to put her to the torture: nevertheless he deferred to the earlier
Master William Haiton, who came later, was of the opinion that there was no need
Master Jean Le Maistre, Vice-Inquisitor, said she should once more be examined on
whether she believed she should submit to the Church Militant.]
When these opinions had been heard and the answers which Jeanne had made on
the previous Wednesday considered, in view of her disposition and will and of the
circumstances, we concluded that it was neither necessary nor expedient to submit
her to the torture, and that we should proceed further in the matter.
Saturday, May 19th. The deliberations of the University of Paris are read, and the
doctors give their opinions
On Saturday following, May 19th, before us the said judges in the chapel of the
archiepiscopal manor of Rouen, where we were constituted tribunal, there
appeared. the venerable lords and masters Gilles, abbot of Fécamp, Guillaume,
abbot of Mortemer, doctors of theology; Nicolas, abbot of Jumièges, Guillaume,
abbot of Cormeilles, doctors of canon law; and the abbot of Préaux, the priors of
St. Lô and of Longueville, Jean de Nibat, Jacques Guesdon, Jean Fouchier, Maurice
du Quesnay, Jean Le Fèvre, Guillaume Le Boucher, Pierre Houdenc, Jean de
Châtillon, Erard Emengart, Jean Beaupère, Pierre Maurice, Nicolas Midi, doctors of
theology; William Haiton, Nicolas Couppequesne, Thomas de Courcelles, Richard de
Grouchet, Pierre Minier, Raoul Le Sauvage, Jean Pigache, bachelors of sacred
theology; Raoul Roussel, doctor of canon and civil law; Robert Le Barbier, Denis
Gastinel, licentiates in canon law; André Marguerie, in civil law; Nicolas de Venderès,
Jean Pinchon, in canon law; Jean Alespée, Gilles Deschamps, Nicolas Caval, in civil
law; Jean Bruillot, licentiate in canon law; and Nicolas Loiseleur, canons of Rouen;
Jean Le Doulx, Guillaume de Livet, Pierre Carel, Geoffroy du Crotay, Richard des
Saulx, Bureau de Cormeilles, Aubert Morel, Jean Duchemin, Laurent du Busc, Jean
Raoul Anguy, Guérould Poustel, licentiates in either canon or civil law.
In their presence we the said bishop explained how we had recently received a
considerable number of the deliberations and opinions of notable doctors and
masters upon the statements and confessions of the said Jeanne; and that from
these resolutions we might have proceeded to conclude the judgment of the case,
for they were assuredly sufficient. Nevertheless, to show our honor and reverence
for our mother the University of Paris, and to obtain a clearer and more detailed
elucidation of the matter, to the great peace of our conscience and the edification
of all, we had judged it wise to transmit the said statements to our mother the
University, and in particular to the Faculties of Theology and Decrees, and to ask
the advice of the learned masters of the University, in particular those of these two
Faculties. The University, and in particular these two Faculties, burning with no
ordinary zeal for the faith, gave us their diligent, mature and solemn counsel upon
each of the statements, and addressed them to us in the form of a Public
Instrument. Which deliberations contained in the said instrument we ordered to be
read aloud, word for word, clearly and publicly, and all the said doctors and
masters heard them. And after they had heard the reading of these deliberations of
the University and the two Faculties, the said masters gave and expounded to us
their opinions, in conformity with those of the said Faculties and University, in
addition to the opinions they had already formulated, upon the manner of
procedure which we ought henceforth to adopt. We have written below the tenor
of these deliberations and of the letters of the University.
First follows the tenor of the letters addressed by the University to Our Lord the
"To the most excellent, high and mighty prince, the King of France and England, our
most feared and sovereign lord. Most excellent prince, our most feared and
sovereign lord and father, your royal excellence ought in all things carefully
endeavor to keep entire the honor, reverence and glory of the divine Majesty and
of His Holy Catholic faith, by the extirpation of errors, false doctrines and all other
offenses hostile thereto. In the continuance of this your highness will in all things
have effective aid, succor and prosperity through the grace of the Most High, and
receive large increase of your high renown. To this end your most noble highness
with God's grace began a most excellent work concerning our holy faith, namely
the legal proceedings against this woman known as The Maid, against her scandals,
errors and crimes, which are manifest in this entire realm, and the form and
manner of which we have repeatedly written to you. With the matter and form of
this trial we are acquainted by letters we have received, from the account supplied
in your name in our general assembly by our agents the very honorable and most
reverend masters Jean Beaupère, Jacques de Touraine, Nicolas Midi, masters of
theology; who have brought and given us answers on other points with which they
"In truth when we had heard and well considered this account, it appeared to us
that in this woman's trial extreme gravity and a holy and just procedure had been
observed, which must be pleasing to all men. Therefore we give most humble
thanks, first to the sovereign Majesty, then to your most high nobility, with a
humble and loyal affection; and finally to all those who from reverence of God have
given their pains, labor and energies to this matter, for the good of our holy faith.
"Further, most dread and sovereign lord, according to the pleasure of your
instructions and demands in letters and through these reverend masters, after
many assemblies as well
as great and mature deliberations among ourselves, we return to your excellence
our counsel, conclusions and deliberations on the points, statements and articles
which were transmitted and explained to us; and we are always prepared to
employ ourselves whole-heartedly in matters so directly concerning our faith, as
our profession directly enjoins, and as we have at all times shown to the best of
our ability. If anything further remained to be said or expounded by us, these
honorable and reverend masters, who now return to your highness and who were
present at our deliberations, will be able to set forth, expound and declare all that
pertains thereto in accordance with our intention. May it please your magnificence
to give faith to all they shall say in our name and receive them with especial
recommendation: for in truth they have shown great diligence in the said matters
from pure and holy affection, unsparing of their efforts, their persons and their
faculties, and careless of the great and threatening dangers particularly on the
roads; and indeed through their wisdom, their ordered and discreet prudence this
matter has been and shall be conducted to its end, if it please God, with wisdom,
holiness and reason.
"Finally we humbly beseech your excellent highness to bring this matter as soon
and diligently as possible to its conclusion, for in truth the length and delays are
perilous, and a great and notable reparation is necessary to bring the people, so
scandalized by this woman, back to a true and holy doctrine and belief. To the
entire exaltation and integrity of our faith and for the praise of the eternal God who
may in His grace maintain your excellency in prosperity until you reach eternal
glory. Written at Paris in our solemn assembly, met at St. Bernard, on May 14th,
1431. Your most humble daughter the University of Paris."
Then follows the tenor of the letters addressed by the University of Paris to Us the
"To the reverend father and lord in Christ the bishop of Beauvais. The diligent labor
of pastoral vigilance is shown to be animated by an immense fervor of most
singular charity, my lord and most reverend father, when a most firm
righteousness never, in its stable and constant industry, out of pious concern for
the public safety, ceases from work on behalf of our holy faith. The virile and
famous martial spirit of your most sincere fervor showed its true measure when
thanks to your valiant and forceful probity this woman commonly known as The
Maid was brought into the hands of your justice by the propitious grace of Christ;
by her poison widely discharged the most Christian flock of almost the entire
western world seemed infected: the vigilant solicitude of your reverence which is
ever at pains to perform the duties of a true pastor did not fail to oppose thereto a
"In our general assembly divers famous doctors of theology, our agents, masters
Jean Beaupère, Jacques de Touraine and Nicolas Midi elegantly explained to us the
form and conduct of the procedures already begun against the grave offenses of
this perfidious woman, with certain propositions, articles, letters from our lord the
king and from your reverence, credentials and demands. When we had heard their
speeches in full we resolved to address our most active gratitude to your highness
and reverence who has never displayed indifference when this celebrated work of
exalting the divine name is in question, or the integrity and glory of the orthodox
faith, and the salutary edification of the faithful people. We approved of this
celebrated trial, and of its form, and considered it to be according to the holy
canons and to emanate from the most eloquent and experienced minds. And out
of respect for our lord the king and our ancient devotion to your reverence
we granted all the requests which the said doctors presented to us verbally or in
writing, since we desired with all our strength and sincere affection to please you,
"On the principal question we took care to hold many most serious consultations
and deliberations in which, after the matter had been frequently discussed with all
liberty and candor, we decided to have drawn up in writing these deliberations and
consultations at which in the end we had unanimously arrived: these the said
doctors our agents who return to your reverence will faithfully show you. They will
take care also to explain certain other things more fittingly explained at great
length and which we more fully declare in our letters to our lord the king of which a
copy is enclosed. May your reverence receive with especial recommendation these
eminent doctors who have not spared their energies: who, heedless of perils and
labors, have not ceased toiling at this matter of faith. To the accomplishment of
this most famous task which has not been vainly undertaken we will give our
succor and perseverance to your reverence's tireless zeal until reason shall decide
that the divine Majesty has been appeased by a reparation proportionate to the
offense, that the truth of our orthodox faith remains stainless, and the iniquitous
and scandalous demoralization of the people is past. Then when the Prince of
shepherds shall appear he will grant to the pastoral fervor of your reverence a
crown of eternal glory. Written at Paris in our general assembly solemnly held at St.
Bernard on May 13th, 1431. The Rector and the University of Paris."
Then follows the deliberation of the University of Paris
"In the name of the Lord, amen. Be it known and patent to all by the tenor of this
present public instrument that in
the year of the Lord 1431, indiction nine, on the 19th [29th] day of April in the
vacancy of the apostolic see our mother the University of Paris was assembled and
called together solemnly at St. Bernard in respect of two articles. The first and
principal of these articles was to hear the reading of letters and propositions from
the most Christian prince our lord the king, from his council and the lord judges,
regarding the proceedings in matter of faith against a certain woman of the name
of Jeanne commonly called The Maid, and to deliberate thereupon; the second was
ordinary, concerning supplications and complaints. These articles were expounded
by the venerable and prudent master Pierre de Gouda, master of arts, rector of the
University and president of the assembly.
"When these letters had been opened and read, and their credentials explained by
one of the ambassadors of our lord the king, a member of his council and one of
the judges sent to the University, the twelve articles inserted below were read: My
lord the rector discovered, proposed and declared that the content of the articles
just mentioned was important and difficult, and concerned the orthodox faith, the
Christian religion and the holy laws. He said that the task of considering and
qualifying these articles concerned especially the venerable Faculties of Theology
and Decrees, according to their professions; he added that the University could not
deliberate and decide upon the judgment of these matters and articles without the
aid of the said Faculties; the decision and judgment of the Faculties would then be
submitted to the University, together or separately. After this explanation the
rector opened the deliberation on each and every one of the things which had just
been set forth in the general assembly of all the masters and doctors here present.
Whereupon each Faculty or Nation retired and met separately in the place where it
customarily assembled to consider the most difficult matters
and tasks; and each of them continued to hold sessions there. After the mature-
deliberations of the Faculties and Nations the private decisions of each were made
public in accordance with custom and were reported in common. Finally the
University through the offices of the lord rector and in conformity with the
deliberations of the Faculties and Nations resolved to entrust the decisions of this
matter and the qualifying of the said articles to the Faculties of Theology and
Decrees, and their deliberations should be reported to the University.
"In the year and indiction aforesaid on the fourteenth day of March, during the
vacancy of the apostolic see, the said mother the University of Paris was solemnly
assembled at St. Bernard to consider two articles. The chief one was to hear the
reading of the deliberations of the venerable Faculties of Theology and Decrees on
a matter of faith according to the commission of the University dated April [29th].
After the matter of this article was fully and gravely expounded by the office of the
lord rector, the said lord required the Faculties present at the assembly to make
known and report their deliberations on this subject, and their judgment on the
articles, in the presence of the University. Whereupon the venerable Faculty of
Theology through the medium of master Jean de Troies, then vice-dean of the
Faculty, answered that on many frequent occasions each of the said Faculties of
Theology and Decrees in whole or in special commissions had assembled to judge
the matter and qualify the articles. In the end they each after long and mature
deliberation had doctrinally reached a decision according to the exact tenor of a
certain memorandum which master Jean held in his hands. In the presence of the
University he first displayed and then read it in a clear and loud voice, with the
articles already mentioned. The tenor of these articles, judgments and qualifications
contained in the said memorandum are given below word for word."
Here follow the articles concerning the words and deeds of Jeanne commonly
known as The Maid
"And firstly this woman says and affirms that in her thirteenth year or thereabouts,
Here follow the deliberations and conclusions reached by the Holy Faculty of
Theology in the University of Paris, in judgment of the articles already transcribed
concerning the words and deeds of Jeanne commonly called The Maid: the entire
deliberations and conclusions of the said Faculty and all which concerns this matter,
the Faculty submits to the judgment of Our Holy Father the Pope and the Holy
"And firstly regarding article the first, the Faculty declares doctrinally that in view of
the end, manner and content of the revelations, the quality of her person, the place
and other circumstances, these revelations are fictitious, pernicious and misleading
lies, or that these are superstitions, proceeding from evil or diabolical spirits, such
as Belial, Satan and Behemoth."
"Regarding article the second, its content appears less the truth than a
presumptuous, misleading, pernicious, feigned lie, hostile to the dignity of angels."
"Regarding article the third, there is no sufficient sign, and the said Jeanne believes
lightly and affirms rashly. Moreover, in the comparison she made her belief is evil
and she wanders from the faith."
"Regarding article the fourth, its content is nothing but superstition, divination,
presumptuous affirmation and vain boasting."
"Regarding article the fifth, the said woman is blasphemous towards God,
contemptuous of God in His sacraments, unmindful of divine and sacred law and
the ecclesiastical sanctions, evil thinking and erring in the faith, foolishly. boastful,
and must be suspected of idolatry, and of the execration of herself and her
garments; she has imitated the rites of the heathen."
"Regarding article the sixth, the said woman is treacherous, cunning, cruel, athirst
for the spilling of human blood, seditious, inciting to tyranny, and blasphemous of
God in her commands and revelations."
"Regarding article the seventh, the said woman is impious towards her parents,
contemptuous of the commandment to honor her father and mother, scandalous,
blasphemous towards God; she wanders from the faith and has made rash and
"Regarding article the eighth, we observe a pusillanimity verging on despair and by
interpretation on suicide; a rash and presumptuous assertion concerning the
remission of a sin; and an erroneous opinion in the said woman concerning man's
"Regarding article the ninth, there appears a rash and presumptuous assertion, a
pernicious falsehood. She contradicts herself in the preceding article, and holds evil
opinions in matters of faith."
"Regarding article the tenth, we find rash and presumptuous affirmations,
superstitious divination, blasphemy of St. Catherine and St. Margaret, transgression
of the commandment to love her neighbor."
"Regarding article the eleventh, this woman, supposing she has had the revelations
and apparitions of which she boasts according to the circumstances of article one,
is idolatrous, a caller up of evil spirits, a wanderer from the faith, and makes rash
affirmations and unlawful oaths."
"Regarding article the twelfth, the said woman is schismatic, erroneous in her
opinions of the unity and authority of the Church, apostate: and still obstinately
persists in her deviation from the faith."
Here follow the deliberation and doctrinal judgment of the venerable Faculty of
Decrees of the University of Paris upon the twelve articles, transcribed and
annotated above, concerning the words and deeds of Jeanne commonly called The
Maid: the Faculty submits these deliberations and judgments to the decision and
judgment of the sovereign Pontiff of the apostolic Holy See and of the Holy Council
"If this woman with a sane mind persisted in maintaining the propositions set forth
in the twelve articles, and performed the things described therein, the opinion of
the Faculty of Law, after a diligent examination, by way of counsel and doctrine, is
in charitable speech:
"Firstly, that this woman is schismatic, for schism is an unlawful separation, due to
disobedience, from the unity of the Church, and that she separates herself from
obedience to the Church Militant, as she has said, etc."
"That this woman deviates from the faith; contradicts the article of the faith
contained in the symbol: Unam Sanctam Ecclesiam Catholicam: and, as St.
Jerome says, he who contradicts this article proves not only that he is ignorant,
malicious and not Catholic, but heretical also."
[PAGE 319: NOT AVAILABLE - GRAPHIC]
"That this woman is apostate, for the hair which God gave her for a veil she has
had untimely cut off, and also, with the same design has rejected woman's dress
and imitated the costume of men."
"That this woman is a liar and witch when she says she is sent from God, speaks
with angels and saints, and yet justifies herself by no miracle or special evidence of
the Scriptures. When the Lord wished to send Moses into Egypt to the sons of
Israel he gave them a sign so that they might believe he was sent from God: he
changed a rod into a serpent and a serpent into a rod. Likewise, when John the
Baptist began his mission he brought a special testimony from the Scriptures when
he said: 7 am the voice of one crying in the wilderness. Prepare ye the way of the
Lord,' as Isaiah had foretold."
"That this woman, in law and in presumption of law, deviates from the faith: for in
the first place when she is anathema by the authority of the canon law she remains
so long in this condition; in the second place, by declaring that she preferred not to
receive the body of Christ, not to confess herself at the time ordained of the
Church, rather than assume woman's dress. She is, moreover, vehemently
suspected of heresy and should be diligently examined on the articles of the faith."
"This woman sins also when she says she is as certain of being received into
Paradise as if she were- already partaker of
that blessed glory, seeing that on this earthly journey no pilgrim knows if he is
worthy of glory or of punishment, which the sovereign judge alone can tell.
Consequently if this woman being charitably exhorted and duly admonished by a
competent judge, will not willingly return to the unity of the Catholic faith, publicly
abjure her error to the good pleasure of this judge, and give fitting satisfaction, she
must be abandoned to the discretion of the secular judge to receive the penalty
proportionate to her crime.
"After these articles, decisions and qualifications were read, the lord rector clearly
and publicly demanded of the venerable Faculties of Theology and Decrees if the
deliberations and qualifications which had just been read from the book
corresponded to the deliberations and decrees of the said Faculties. Whereupon the
Faculties separately answered, the Faculty of Theology through master Jean de
Troies, the Faculty of Decrees through the venerable master Guérould Boissel, its
dean, that these decisions and qualifications were exactly those which they had
given and decreed. Then the lord rector reminded them and declared how the
University had commissioned the Faculties of Theology and Decrees to issue these
decisions and qualifications; that the University, as had been reported, had
undertaken to accept and esteem these decisions emanating from the said
Faculties of Decrees and Theology as good, ratified and acceptable. When this was
declared in this general form the lord rector opened the discussion of the particular
points which had been set forth and declared to the general assembly of all the
masters and doctors present. Then each Faculty or Nation retired from the
assembly and met in the place where it customarily deliberated on the most difficult
cases and matters; where it ordinarily assembled to discuss such points and other
difficult concerns of the University and held an habitual session. After a long and
mature discussion by the
Faculties and Nations, each deliberation was made and repeated in public, according
to custom, and the University, through the person of the lord rector, concluded
that it esteemed the decisions and qualifications of the Faculties of Theology and
Decrees as good, ratified, and acceptable, and held them for its own. In witness of
which the circumspect and venerable masters Jean Beaupère, Jacques de Touraine,
and Nicolas Midi, professors of sacred theology, requested us to deliver and
present to each of them one or more public instruments signed by the following
"This was done at Paris in the place, year, indiction, day and month aforesaid, in
the presence of the venerable and discreet lords and masters, namely, for the
instrument of April 29th: Pierre de Dyerré, professor of sacred theology; Guérould
Boissel, doctor of decrees; Henri Thiboust, master of arts and medicine; Jean
Barrey, Gerolf de Holle, and Richard Abesseur, master of arts; Jean Vacheret,
principal beadle of the venerable Faculty of Theology, and Boémond de Lutrea,
principal beadle of the [French] Nation; for the instrument of May 14th, there were
present Jean Soquet, Jean Gravestain, professors of theology; the said Guérould
Boissel; Simon de La Mare, master of arts and medicine; André Pelé, Guillaume
Estocart, Jacques Nourisseur, Jean Trophard and Martin Berech, masters of arts,
and a great number of doctors and masters of each Faculty, with the beadles Jean
Vacheret and Boémond de Lutrea, witnesses specially called and summoned.
"And I, Jean Bourrillet, called François, priest, master of arts, licentiate in decrees
and bachelor of theology, notary public by imperial and apostolic authority, with the
venerable master Michel Hébert, priest of the diocese of Rouen, master of arts,
notary and secretary of our Mother the University of Paris by imperial and apostolic
authority, I declare that I was
present at all which was said, expounded, discussed, deliberated and resolved in
the assemblies of the University. In witness whereof I have put my habitual seal to
this present document, as I have been summoned and called to do, in testimony of
its faith and truth."
"And I, Michel Hébert, priest of the diocese of Rouen, master of arts, notary and
secretary of the University of Paris by pontifical and imperial authority, having been
present with master Jean Bourrillet at all which was said, set forth, and discussed in
the University, as has been declared above, I certify I have seen and heard these
things. Therefore I have put my habitual sign to this present document, written
with my own hand, and signed below in witness of its faith and truth, as I have
been summoned and called to do."
Deliberation of the doctors and masters of Rouen who gave their opinion in
conformity with the University of Paris
Then master Raoul Roussel, treasurer and canon of the cathedral of Rouen where
he lived, doctor of canon and civil law, gave his opinion that the case had been
notably and solemnly debated; that it should be concluded and defined in the
presence of the parties; and unless Jeanne returned to the way of truth and
salvation, she should be deemed a heretic. He adhered to the decision of the
University of Paris.
Master Nicolas de Venderès, licentiate in canon law, arch. deacon of Eu, canon of
the church of Rouen, gave an opinion similar to master Raoul Roussel's, adding that
one day would be sufficient to conclude, pronounce the sentence, and abandon
Jeanne to the secular justice.
The reverend father in Christ, Gilles, lord abbot of Ste. Trinité de Fécamp, doctor of
sacred theology, gave the following opinion: on a fixed day the Promoter should
ask her if she wished to say anything more; then she should be admonished.
Afterwards if she would not retract and return to the way of truth, she should be
considered a heretic, sentence must be pronounced and Jeanne given over to
Master Jean de Châtillon, doctor of sacred theology, archdeacon of Évreux,
declared that those who have not fully considered the matter are bound to accept
the opinion of the University
of Paris. For his own part he accepted it, and in respect of the rest agreed with the
abbot of Fécamp
The reverend father in Christ, Guillaume, lord abbot of Cormeilles, doctor of
decrees, followed the University of Paris.
Master André Marguerie, licentiate in law and bachelor of decrees, archdeacon of
Petit-Caux and canon of Rouen, in view of the admonitions addressed to Jeanne,
adheres to the opinion of the University of Paris. Regarding the procedure, he said
one day was sufficient to conclude and pronounce the sentence.
Master Erard Emengart, doctor of sacred theology, thought Jeanne should be once
more admonished; and if after this she did not return to the path of truth, he
agreed to the opinion of the University of Paris.
Master Guillaume Le Boucher, doctor of sacred theology, held to the opinion he
had given with other doctors, masters and bachelors, on April 9th; he added that
Jeanne should be once more admonished and be informed of the deliberation of
the University of Paris.
The lord Pierre, prior of Longueville-Giffard, doctor of sacred theology, gave a
similar opinion. Master Jean Pinchon, licentiate in canon law, archdeacon of Jouy
and canon of Paris, adhered to the opinion of master Guillaume Le Boucher.
Master Pasquier de Vaulx, doctor of decrees, canon of the churches of Paris and
Rouen, accepted the opinion of the University of Paris.
Master Jean Beaupère, doctor of sacred theology, canon of the churches of Rouen
and Besançon, accepted the opinion of the University, and in respect of the
subsequent procedure referred to us the judges. Master Denis Gastinel, licentiate in
canon and civil law, canon of the church of Rouen, said that if Jeanne would not
obey after being warned he followed the opinion of the University of Paris.
Master Nicolas Midi, doctor of sacred theology, canon of the church of Rouen,
thought that the trial could be concluded and sentence pronounced on the same
day; for the rest, he held to the result of his deliberations on April 9th with the
other doctors and bachelors.
Master Maurice du Quesnay, doctor of sacred theology, thought Jeanne should
once more be charitably admonished, and if she did not obey, he accepted the
opinion of the University of Paris.
Master Pierre Houdenc, doctor of sacred theology, declared that for the salvation
of her body and soul Jeanne should be charitably admonished before the lord
judges concluded; if, after these warnings she did not return to the Church she
would be obstinate and heretical. For the conclusion he referred to ourselves the
Master Jean Le Fèvre, doctor of sacred theology, held to the opinion he gave
recently with other doctors and masters on April 9th, and accepted the deliberation
of the Faculty of Theology; he added that Jeanne should be charitably admonished
on a day chosen for that purpose.
The religious brother Martin Ladvenu, held to the opinion of master Jean Le Fèvre.
The religious brother Thomas Amouret did likewise.
The venerable and discreet advocates of the archiepiscopal court of Rouen,
licentiates in canon and civil law, or both, namely, master Guillaume de Livet, Pierre
Carel, Guérould Poustel, Geoffroy du Crotay, Richard des Saulx, Bureau de
Cormeilles, Jean Le Doulx, Aubert Morel, Jean Duchemin, Laurent du Busc, Jean
Colombel, Raoul Anguy and Jean Le Tavernier, declared that if Jeanne would not
obey after she had been admonished to return to the way of truth and salvation
nor submit to the Church, she should be proceeded against according to the
deliberations of the Faculty of Decrees.
The reverend father in Christ the religious Guillaume, lord abbot of Mortemer,
professor of sacred theology, declared that Jeanne should be once more charitably
admonished; if she would not obey the proceedings should be continued, and he
accepted the deliberation of the Faculty of Theology of the University of Paris.
The religious master Jacques Guesdon, professor of sacred theology, gave an
opinion similar to that of the lord abbot of Mortemer.
The religious master Jean Fouchier, doctor of sacred theology, gave an opinion like
that of the lord abbot of Mortemer.
Master Jean Maugier, licentiate in canon law, canon of Rouen, thought that Jeanne
should be once more charitably admonished and if she would not obey, the
proceedings should be continued.
Master Nicolas Couppequesne, canon of the church of Rouen, bachelor of theology,
accepted the opinion of the University of Paris.
Master Raoul Le Sauvage, bachelor of sacred theology, adhered to the opinion he
lately gave us in the tenor of the letter signed by his hand. He added that Jeanne
should be admonished again, in private and in public, before the people: if she
would not return to the way of truth and salvation, he referred to the judges for
the subsequent procedure.
Master Pierre Minier, bachelor of theology, was of the same opinion as Master
Raoul Le Sauvage. Master Jean Pigache, bachelor of sacred theology, gave an
opinion according to the deliberation of the University.
Master Richard de Grouchet, bachelor of sacred theology, considered that Jeanne
should again be charitably admonished,
and if after this warning she would not obey the Church she must be deemed a
The religious person brother Ysambard de La Pierre adhered to the opinion he gave
with others on April 9th, adding that Jeanne should be charitably admonished, and
that if she would not obey the Church after this warning he referred to us her
judges for the method of the subsequent procedure.
Master Pierre Maurice, doctor of sacred theology, adhered to the opinion he gave
with other doctors on April 9th, adding that on a certain fixed day Jeanne should be
charitably admonished and be informed of the peril she incurred by refusing to obey
and submit to the Church; if then she persisted in her disobedience the proceedings
should be continued.
Master Thomas de Courcelles, bachelor of sacred theology, canon of the churches
of Laon and Thérouanne, adhered to the decisions reached with other doctors on
April 9th. On other points he was of the same opinion as the said Pierre Maurice,
and added that if Jeanne refused to obey the Church after this warning she should
be considered a heretic.
Master Nicolas Loiseleur, canon of the churches of Chartres and of Rouen, master
of arts, gave an opinion similar to that of the said Thomas de Courcelles.
Master Jean Alespée, licentiate in law, canon of the church of Rouen, considered
that Jeanne must on a certain day be charitably admonished, and if she persisted in
her disobedience her trial must be concluded and the sentence pronounced.
The religious master Bertrand du Chesne, doctor of law, superior of the deanery of
Lihons-en-Santerre, of the Cluny order, held the opinion of the Faculty of Decrees
in the University of Paris.
Master Guillaume Erart, doctor of theology, sacristan and canon of the church of
Langres, followed the opinion of the
chapter of the cathedral of Rouen and of the University of Paris.
Whereupon we the aforesaid judges, thanking the reverend fathers, lords and
masters, declared that we should once more charitably admonish the said Jeanne
to return to the way of truth, for the salvation of her body and soul, and that we
should proceed further to the conclusion of the case and the setting of a day for
pronouncing sentence according to their good deliberation and salutary counsel.
Wednesday, May 23rd. Jeanne's faults are expounded to her by master Pierre
Maurice. The trial is concluded
On the following Wednesday, May 23rd, the said Jeanne was led to a room near
her prison in the castle of Rouen and into the presence of us her judges assembled
in tribunal. There were also present the reverend fathers and lords, the lord bishops
of Thérouanne and of Noyon, the lords and masters Jean de Châtillon, archdeacon
of Évreux, Jean Beaupère, Nicolas Midi, Guillaume Erart, Pierre Maurice, doctors of
sacred theology; André Marguerie, licentiate in law, and Nicolas de Venderès,
licentiate in decrees, archdeacons and canons of the church of Rouen.
In the presence of the said Jeanne we caused to be explained certain points on
which she had erred and strayed according to the deliberation of the Faculties of
Theology and Decrees of the University of Paris. The faults, crimes and errors
contained in each of these points according to the deliberation were explained to
her: and we warned her and caused her to be warned to abandon these
shortcomings and errors, to correct and reform herself, to submit to the correction
and decision of our Holy Mother the Church, as is declared at greater length in a
memorandum transcribed below, which was expounded in French to Jeanne by
master Pierre Maurice, canon of Rouen and a celebrated doctor of theology.
Here follows the tenor of the memorandum
Firstly, Jeanne, you have said that from the age of thirteen years or thereabouts
you have had revelations and apparitions of angels, of St. Catherine and St.
Margaret, whom you have frequently seen with your bodily eyes; and that they
have often spoken with you and told you many things set forth at length in your
On this point the clerks of the University of Paris and others have considered the
manner and end of these revelations, the matter of the things revealed, and the
quality of your person and having considered everything relevant they declare that
it is all false, seductive, pernicious, that such revelations and apparitions are
superstitions and proceed from evil and diabolical spirits.
You have said that your king received a sign by which he knew that you were sent
from God, that it was St. Michael, in the company of a host of angels, some with
crowns, others with wings, and St. Catherine and St. Margaret were among them,
coming to you in the town and castle of Chinon. They all mounted the stairs of the
castle in your company up to the chamber of your king, before whom the angel
who bore the crown bowed. At another time you said this crown, which you call a
sign, was given to the archbishop of Reims, who presented it to your king, before
many princes and lords whom you have named,
Regarding this article, the clergy say it is not probable, but rather a presumptuous,
misleading and pernicious lie, an undertaking contrary and derogatory to the dignity
You have said that you recognized the angels and saints by the good counsel,
comfort and doctrine they gave you; by the fact that they told you their names
and -the saints greeted you; moreover, that you believe it was St. Michael who
appeared to you; that their words and deeds are good; all of which you believe as
firmly as you hold the faith of Jesus Christ.
Regarding this article, the clergy say that the signs were not sufficient for the
recognition of the angels and saints, that you believed lightly and affirmed rashly,
that, moreover, in the comparison you make you deviate from the faith.
You have said you are certain of future and contingent events, that you have
known where things were hidden, that you recognized men you had never seen,
through the voices of St. Catherine and St. Margaret.
Regarding this article, the clergy find superstition, divination, presumptuous
assertions and vain boasting.
You have said that you wore and still wear man's dress at God's command and to
His good pleasure, for you had instruction from God to wear this dress, and so you
have put on a short tunic, jerkin, and hose with many points. You even wear your
hair cut short above the ears, without keeping about you anything to denote your
sex, save what nature has given you. And often you have in this apparel received
the Sacrament of the Eucharist. And although you have many times been
admonished to put it off, you would not, saying that you would rather die than put
off this dress, unless it were God's command; and that if you were still in this dress
and with those
of your own party, it would be for the great welfare of France. You say also that
nothing could persuade you to take an oath not to wear this dress and bear these
arms; and for all this you plead divine command.
Regarding such matters, the clergy declare that you blaspheme against God,
despising Him and His sacraments, that you transgress divine law, Holy Scripture
and the canons of the Church, that you think evil and err from the faith, that you
are full, of vain boasting, that you are given to idolatry and worship yourself and
your clothes, according to the customs of the heathen.
You have often said that in your letters you have put these names Jhesus Maria,
and the sign of the cross, to warn those to whom you wrote not to do what was
indicated in the letter. In other letters you boasted that you would kill all those who
did not obey you, and that by your blows would the favor of the Lord be seen. Also
you have often said that all your deeds were by revelation and according to divine
In regard to such affirmations, the clergy declare you to be a traitor, perfidious,
cruel, desiring human bloodshed, seditious, an instigator of tyranny, a blasphemer
of God's commandments and revelations.
You have said that according to revelations vouchsafed you at the age of
seventeen, you left your parents' house against their will, driving them almost mad.
You went to Robert de Baudricourt, who, at your request, gave you a man's dress
and a sword, also men-at-arms to take you to your king. And when you came to
the king, you told him that his enemies should be driven away, you promised to
bring him into a great kingdom,
to make him victorious over his foes, and that for this God had sent you. These
things you say you accomplished in obedience to God and according to revelation.
Regarding such things, the clergy declare that you have been irreverent to your
father and mother, thereby disobeying God's commandment, that you have given
occasion for scandal, that you have blasphemed; that you have erred from the
faith; and that you have made a rash and presumptuous promise.
You have said that of your own will you hurled yourself from the tower of
Beaurevoir, preferring to die rather than be delivered into the hands of the English
and live after the destruction of Compiègne. And although St. Catherine and St.
Margaret forbade you to leap, you could not restrain yourself. And in spite of the
great sin you have committed in offending these saints, you knew by your voices
that after your confession your sin was forgiven.
This act the clergy declare you committed because of cowardice verging on despair
and possibly suicide. In this matter you also uttered a rash and presumptuous
statement in asserting that your sin is forgiven, and you err from the faith touching
the doctrine of free will.
You have said that St. Catherine and St. Margaret promised to lead you to Paradise
provided that you preserved the virginity which you vowed and promised them,
and that you are as well assured of it as if you had already entered into the glory of
the Blessed. You believe you have not committed mortal sin, and it seems to you
that if you were in mortal sin the saints would not visit you daily as they do.
Such an assertion the clergy declare to be a pernicious lie,
presumptuous and rash, that it contains a contradiction of what you had previously
said, and that finally your beliefs err from the true Christian faith.
You have declared that you know well that God loves certain living persons better
than you, and that you learned this by revelation from St. Catherine and St.
Margaret; also that those saints speak French, not English, as they are not on the
side of the English. And since you knew that your voices were for your king, you
began to dislike the Burgundians.
Such matters the clergy pronounce to be a rash and presumptuous assertion, a
superstitious divination, a blasphemy uttered against St. Catherine and St.
Margaret, and a transgression of the commandment to love our neighbors.
You declared that to those whom you call St. Michael, St. Catherine and St.
Margaret, you did reverence, bending the knee, taking off your cap, kissing the
ground on which they trod, vowing to them your virginity: that you believed in the
instruction of these saints, whom you invoked, kissed and embraced, as soon as
they appeared to you, without seeking counsel from your priest or from any other
ecclesiastic. And, notwithstanding, you believe these voices came from God as
firmly as you believe in the Christian religion and the Passion of Our Lord Jesus
Christ. Moreover, you said that if any evil spirit should appear to you in the form of
St. Michael you would know such a spirit and distinguish him from the saint. And
again you said, that of your own accord, you have sworn not to reveal the sign
you gave to your king. And finally you added: "Save at God's command."
Now touching these matters, the clergy affirm that if you
had the revelations and saw the apparitions of which you boast in such a manner
as you say, then you are an idolatress, an invoker of demons, an apostate from
the faith, a maker of rash statements, a swearer of an unlawful oath.
And you have said that if the Church wished you to disobey the orders you say
God gave you, nothing would induce you to do so; that you know that all the
deeds of which you have been accused in your trial were wrought according to the
command of God and that it was impossible for you to do otherwise. Touching
these deeds, you refuse to submit to the judgment of the Church on earth or of
any living man, and will submit therein to God alone. And, moreover, you declared
that this reply itself was not made of your own accord but by God's command; in
spite of the article of faith, Unam Sanctam Ecclesiam Catholicam, having been
many times declared before you, and notwithstanding that it behooves all
Christians to submit their deeds and sayings to the Church Militant especially all that
concerns revelations and similar matters.
Wherefore the clergy declare you to be schismatic, an unbeliever in the unity and
authority of the Church, apostate and obstinately erring from the faith.
Now when these assertions with the qualifications of the University of Paris had
thus been related and explained to Jeanne she was finally admonished in French by
the same doctor to think very carefully over her acts and sayings, especially in the
light of the last article. He spoke to her thus:
"Jeanne, dearest friend, it is now time, near the end of your trial to think well over
all that has been said. Although you have four times already, by the lord bishop of
Beauvais, by the lord vicar of the Inquisitor, by other doctors sent to
you on their behalf, been most diligently admonished for the honor and reverence
of God, for the faith and law of Jesus Christ, for the tranquillity of their consciences,
and the alleviation of the scandal you have caused, to the salvation of your body
and soul; although you have been shown the perils to which you expose your body
and soul if you do not reform yourself and your sayings and correct them by
submitting your acts and your words to the Church, and by accepting her
judgment, nevertheless up till now you have not wished to listen.
"Now although many of your judges would have been satisfied with the evidence
collected against you, in their anxiety for the salvation of your body and soul they
have submitted your sayings for examination to the University of Paris, the light of
all knowledge and the extirpator of errors. When the lord judges received the
deliberations of the University they decided that you should to this end be once
more admonished, warned of your errors, scandals and other crimes, and that we
should beg, exhort and advise you by the bowels of Our Lord Jesus Christ who
suffered cruel death for the redemption of mankind, to correct your words and
submit them to the judgment of the Church, as every loyal Christian is bound and
obliged to do. Do not permit yourself to be separated from Our Lord Jesus Christ
who created you to be a partaker in His glory; do not choose the way of eternal
damnation with the enemies of God who daily endeavor to disturb men,
counterfeiting often the likeness of Christ, His angels and His saints, who they
profess and affirm themselves to be, as is shown more fully in the lives of the
Fathers and in the Scriptures. Therefore if such apparitions have appeared to you,
do not believe them: more than that, put away the belief or imagination you had in
such things, and believe rather in the words and opinions of the University of Paris
and other doctors who, being well acquainted with the law c God and the Holy
Scriptures, have concluded that no fait] should be given to such apparitions or in
any extraordinary apparition or forbidden novelty which is not supported by Holy
Scripture or sign or miracle, none of which you have
"You have believed these apparitions lightly, instead of turning to God in devout
prayer to grant you certainty; and you have not consulted prelates or learned
ecclesiastics to enlighten yourself: although, considering your condition and the
simplicity of your knowledge, you ought to have done so. Take this example:
suppose your king had appointed you to defend a fortress, forbidding you to let
any one enter. Would you not refuse to admit whoever claimed to come in his
name but brought no letters or authentic sign? Likewise Our Lord Jesus Christ,
when He ascended into Heaven, committed the government of His Church to the
apostle St. Peter and his successors, forbidding them to receive in the future those
who claimed to come in His name but brought no other token than their own
words. So you should not have put faith in those which you say came to you, nor
ought we to believe in you, since God commands the contrary.
"First, Jeanne, you should consider this: if when you were in your king's domain, a
soldier or other person born in his realm or fealty had arisen and said, 'I will not
obey the king or submit to any of his officers,' would you not have said this man
should be condemned? What shall you say of yourself, who, brought up in the faith
of Christ by the sacrament of baptism, have become the daughter of the Church
and the spouse of Christ, if you do not obey Christ's officers, that is to say, the
prelates of the Church? What judgment shall you deliver upon yourself ? Cease, I
pray you, from uttering these things if you love your Creator, your precious spouse
and your salvation; obey the Church and submit to its judgment;
know that if you do not, if you persevere in this error, your soul will be condemned
to eternal punishment and perpetual torture, and I do not doubt that your body will
come to perdition.
"Let not human pride and empty shame, which perhaps constrain you, hold you
back because you fear that if you do as I advise you will lose the great honors
which you have known. For the honor of God and the salvation of your body and
soul must come first: you will lose all if you do not as I say, for you will separate
yourself from the Church and from the faith you swore in the holy sacrament of
baptism, you cut the authority of Our Lord from the Church which is nevertheless
led, ruled and governed by His spirit and authority. For He said to the prelates of
the Church: 'He that heareth you heareth Me, he that despiseth you despiseth Me.'
Therefore if you will not submit to the Church you separate yourself in fact, and if
you will not submit to her you refuse to submit to God, and you err in respect of
this article: Unam Sanctam Ecclesiam. What the Church is, and her authority, has
been sufficiently explained to you already in former admonitions.
"Therefore, in view of all these things, on behalf of your judges the lord bishop of
Beauvais and the lord vicar of the Inquisitor, I admonish, beg and exhort you by
the pity you have for the passion of your Creator, by the love you bear for the
salvation of your body and soul, correct and amend these errors, return to the
way of truth, by obedience to the Church and submission in all things to her
judgment and decision. By so doing you will save your soul and redeem, as I hope,
your body from death; but if you do not, if you persist, know that your soul will be
overwhelmed in damnation and I fear the destruction of your body. From these ills
may Our Lord preserve you!"
After Jeanne had been admonished in this manner and had heard these
exhortations she replied thereto in this way: "As for my words and deeds, which I
declared in the trial, I refer to them and will maintain them."
Asked if she thinks she is not bound to submit her words and deeds to the Church
Militant or any one other than God, she answered: I will maintain that manner of
speech which I always said and held in the trial."
She said that if she were condemned and she saw the fire and the faggots alight
and the executioner ready 'to kindle the fire, and she herself were in it, she would
say nothing else and would maintain until death what she said in the trial.
Then we her judges asked the Promoter and Jeanne whether they had anything
further to say. They answered that they had not. Then we proceeded to conclude
the proceedings according to the formula of a certain schedule which we the said
bishop held in our hands, and of which the tenor follows:
"We, competent judges in this trial, as we esteem and declare ourselves in so far
as it is necessary, according to your refusal to say anything further, we declare the
trial has ended; and, this conclusion pronounced, we assign to-morrow as the day
on which you shall hear us give justice and pronounce sentence, which shall
afterwards be carried out and proceeded with according to law and reason. In the
presence of the witnesses brother Ysambard de La Pierre, master Mathieu le
Bateur, priests, and Louis Orsel, clerk, of the dioceses of Rouen, London and
Taken from The Trial of Jeanne D'Arc. Translated into English from the Original Latin and French
Documents by W.P. Barrett. French Translation into English by Coley Taylor and Ruth H. Kerr
(Gotham House, 1932). Courtesy of the Medieval Sourcebook.