On this day in 1429, a teenaged Jeanne d’Arc enters the besieged city of Orleans, rallying the French forces. By May 7 the French will break the siege, with Jeanne joining the armed forces on the field, holding her banner high.
Jeanne did not “lead” the armies. Noblemen commanders led their men on the field. However, many of these noblemen took the advice Jeanne offered them. Like the French king, the commanders believed her advice was divinely inspired. And Jeanne’s banner on the field brought hope to the French, who were losing badly to the invading English up until that time. During the year Jeanne was with the French army, it enjoyed more success than it had for years beforehand.
Jeanne will receive an arrow wound between her neck and shoulder during the May 7 battle, but it won’t deter her. She will return to the field in time to encourage the French forces to victory over the English.