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Joan of Arc locked in Rouen castle

The tower | Pierre-Yves Beaudouin / CC-BY-SA
Tower Hundred Years War Imprisonment Joan of Arc Joan of Arc tower in Rouen

This tower was part of the castle raised by king Philip Augustus in 1204: in fact, it was the keep! We used to find, in the heart of the wall flanked by 7 big towers, a chapel and a vast dwelling house.

The keep was surrounded by a deep moat. Through centuries, the castle was many times besieged, like John the Good in 1356, to foil Charles the Bad's conspiracy.

Besieged by Protestants in 1562, demolished by chevalier d'Aumale in 1590, the tower was restored in 1868 by Viollet-le-Duc (he added a pepper box roof).

The 35 metres high keep had a ground floor and 3 floors, and inside, we found the jail of a famous warrior... Who? Joan of Arc!! Let's go back in time...

Here we are in the middle of the Hundred Years War. Joan triumphed in Patay and Orléans' sieges, in 1429. She brought the dauphin, the future Charles VII, to his coronation in Reims. And with her army, she wanted to kick the English out of the Kingdom...

But on May 23th 1430, Burgundians took her prisoner in Compiègne: the English bought her 10 000 livres and handed her over to judges, in Rouen...

Her trial began in 1431 and lasted 3 months: it took place in our keep. Most of time, Joan was locked up in one of the surrounding wall's tower, known as "Maid's tower": it was razed, but you can see vestiges under a house in rue Jeanne-d'Arc.

About the the author

I'm fond of strolls and History, with juicy and spicy details!