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prevent the execution of their daughter's design; and it is by no means improbable that this journey was undertaken during the maid's absence to attend upon the duke of Lorraine. Jeanne caused a letter to be written, wherein she implored pardon of her parents for this disobedience, and received the forgiveness she had solicited. On a third interview with Baudricourt, to whom she was presented by Novelompont, she at length obtained the acquiescence of the governor, who consented to her journey for the purpose of joining the king. There appears some reason to believe that Baudricourt had then received an answer from the court to the letters which he had despatched, and that he had received orders to send the girl to Chinon ; at all events her reiterated applications might have got the better of his reluctance in complying with her entreaties. Some historians have attributed the consent of Baudricourt to a supernatural cause; alleging, after the statements in ancient chronicles, that on the very day when the French were beaten at Rouvray Saint Denis, Jeanne d'Arc had announced to the governor the issue of that fatal encounter in the following words* :
“ En mon Dieu, vous mettez trop à m'envoyer ; car
Luchet, at page 6, speaking of this event, says: This trait, which is the most singular in the life of this extraordinary girl, is
aujourd'hui le gentil Dauphin a eu assez près d'Orléans un bien grand dommage, et sera-t-il encore taillé de l'avoir plus grand si ne m'envoyez bientot vers lui: In the name of God, you hesitate too long about sending me; for this very day the handsome Dauphin has experienced a great discomfiture near Orleans, and it shall so turn out that he will yet suffer a greater, if you do not speedily send me to join him.”
The lord de Baudricourt having resolved on the departure of Jeanne, preparations for the journey were immediately made. The inhabitants of Vaucouleurs procured man's attire for the young woman; and her uncle Durand Laxart, in conjunction with Jacques Alain, purchased her a horse, for which
only guaranteed by the deposition of the wife of a blacksmith of Vaucouleurs, named Henri. What renders the statement suspicious, is, that Baudricourt did not alter his opinion respecting Jeanne d'Arc, saying to her when she departed: Va, et advienne ce que tu pourras. If the prophecy had been really verified, the people would have seen a miracle in all that transpired, and the governor would not have conducted himself so cavalierly. The major part of her panegyrists were ignorant of, or wilfully omitted this occurrence, while others have contented themselves in relating it with indifference. This would incontestably have proved the most propitious moment of her life, the true sign which bas been so repeatedly and so fruitlessly demanded."
The deposition of Catherine, wife of Henri the blacksmith of Vaucouleurs, was made on January 31, 1456, during the process of revisal,
they paid twelve francs ; while Jean de Metz undertook to liquidate the expenses on the road. The registers of the Chamber of Accounts prove that the king did not order the disbursement of these sums until the 21st April, 1429,* which was subsequent to the examination of La Pucelle, and his having in consequence confided to her the charge of conveying succour to Orleans.
The escort of Jeanne d'Arc consisted of seven persons; Jean de Metz; Bertrand de Poulengy, esq. ; Pierre d'Arc, third brother of La Pucelle; Collet de Vienne, a messenger or emissary of the king ; Richard, a bow-man; Julian, the valet of De Poulengy; and Jean de Honnecourt, the attendant of Jean, de Metz. Many of the inhabitants of Domremy proceeded to Vaucouleurs for the purpose of witnessing the departure of the young maid, who expressed to her their apprehensions on account of the numerous bands of armed men who scoured the country. “ Je ne crains pas les hommes d'armes, I do not fear the men at arms,” she boldly replied : “ j'ai Dieu mon Seigneur, que me fera mon chemin jusqu'à mon seigneur le Dauphin : I have God for my Lord, who will make clear for me the road even unto my lord the Dauphin.”
• In the notes to the manuscripts of Fontanieu, in the Royal Library at Paris, is a copy of the receipt for one hundred francs, the sum that was paid by order of the king.
Baudricourt administered an oath to those who had undertaken to conduct La Pucelle, whereby they swore to escort her in safety to the king; but he was far from sharing in the general enthusiasm which the maid had inspired. In thus forwarding Jeanne, the governor complied with the orders of the court; he merely presented a sword to Jeanne d'Arc, and took his leave of her in these words: “ Va, et advienne ce que tu pourras : Go, and let come what thou canst accomplish.”
La Pucelle and her companions began their journey the first Sunday in Lent, being the 13th of February, 1429 ; but she did not inspire the same confidence in all her escort. Notwithstanding this, after the commencement of the expedition the party became rather more emboldened, and proceeded during the first day through a country occupied by the Burgundians and the English, where they apprehended much danger, and therefore determined not to halt, but continue the march during the night. It is evident from all the accounts extant, that they were subjected to imminent dangers in the progress of the journey, so that a part of the escort, affrighted at the enterprise, had it in contemplation to abandon La Pucelle; and although De Metz and Poulengy had no idea of falsifying their oaths, they were nevertheless intimidated.* Jeanne d'Arc,
In the deposition made by the Lady de Touroulde, it appears that Jean de Metz and Poulengy, during the first days
however, a stranger to fear, encouraged her companions by her dauntless bravery and her inflexible resolution. Ne craignez rien, fear nothing," she exclaimed; “ tout ce que je fais m'est commandé. Il y a quatre ou cinq ans mes fréres de Paradis m'ont dit qu'il fallait que j'allusse à la guerre, pour recouvrer le royaume de France. I am commanded to execute all I do. Four or five years ago, my brethren in Paradise told me, that it was requisite I should go to the war, to rescue the kingdom of France :” and in order to give them encouragement, she then promised, that upon their arrival at Chinon, the king would look kindly on them.
The danger to which Jeanne d'Arc was exposed in undertaking such a journey through the territory of an enemy, was not the only peril wherewith she was threatened; for as there is every reason to conjecture that she possessed great personal charms, she might have excited criminal desires in the minds of her conductors. But on consulting the depositions made during the process of revisal by those of her party, it will be found that such was not the case. The unbounded goodness that characterized the young maiden, and the unaffected and sincere piety with which she was animated, tended
of their march, had an idea of throwing La Pucelle into some quarry as a girl out of her mind; but at length they resolved to obey her in every thing.