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The Sword of Saint Joan was a ten kilogram in weight, one-meter in length longsword wielded by Joan of Arc during the Hundred Years' War. Considered an otherwise unremarkable blade during Joan's lifetime, the sword took on greater cultural importance to her fellow Frenchmen after her execution and eventual canonization.

HistoryEdit

During France's battles against the English in the Hundred Years' War, Joan of Arc wielded a longsword while driven on by voices in her head who she credited as being those of Saints Michael, Margaret and Catherine.[1]

After Joan was captured at Rouen, she was burned at the stake for heresy. As no-one wanted any association with the object of a heretic, her sword was overlooked so that by the time Joan was cleared of the charges, the blade had become lost to history.[1]

Centuries later, an unknown archaeologist tasked with cataloging artifacts across the globe for the Smithsonian visited France in the early 1930s and included an entry for the Sword of Saint Joan, as the blade had become known following Joan of Arc's canonization in 1920.[1]

They made note of hearsay from among some farmers outside Rouen that a shepherd had found an ancient well holding several pieces of rusted armor and arms, including a blade that seemed to glow every May 30: the day of Joan's execution in 1431.[1]

The archaeologist also wrote that the sword had been connected to similar Arthurian legends with one group claiming that by placing the weapon at the foot of the saint's statue in Rouen, Joan of Arc would return to assist France in its darkest hour. Another group, consisting of French scholars looking for a Francocentric version of Excalibur, claimed that the sword was actually a magical shape-shifting blade that had been wielded by a number of people with a place in their country's history beginning with the Roman Julius Caesar during his campaigns in Gaul.[1]

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