Orléans et vous
IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF JOAN OF ARC
REPRESENTATIONS OF JOAN OF ARC IN ORLEANS
When anyone mentions Orléans, one immediately thinks of Joan of Arc. The city's history is inextricably linked to her glorious feat, which marked a turning point in the Hundred Years’ War. The English had occupied Orléans since October 1428. Joan of Arc’s arrival in the city on 29 April 1429 boosted morale of French troupes, who went on to drive the English away from Orléans on 8 May 1429. The French troupes then managed to get Charles VII crowned as King of France in Reims and began to reconquer the kingdom.
Orléans remembers the liberator's stay here in several places.
So why not follow in the footsteps of Joan of Arc for a day?
- Hotel Groslot: There is a statue of Joan of Arc in front of the hotel. The statue bears the marks of bomb fragments which hit the cathedral in 1944. Inside the hotel, different elements of the decoration remind us of the Maid of Orléans.
- Museum of Fine Arts: Part of the collections shows the success of representations of Joan of Arc from the second half of the 19th century.
- Sainte-Croix cathedral: Ten windows are dedicated to Joan of Arc. One of the bells was named after Joan of Arc in 1898. In 1926, a chapel was devoted to her by Monseigneur Touchet, one of the supporters of her canonisation. Since 1982, low-relief carvings can be seen on the cathedral forecourt. They are the work of Paul Belmondo, father of the cinema actor.
- Rue Jeanne d'Arc: Architect François-Narcisse Pagot drew up the plans in 1824; the street was finally started in 1841. It was originally supposed to be called Rue Bourbon, but was renamed shortly before its completion with the name of the liberator of Orléans.
- Historical and Archaeologyical Museum: A room dedicated to Joan of Arc offers the public a chronological tour via a selection of works of art and popular objects, from the Renaissance to modern day.
- Joan of Arc’s house: This is where she stayed from April to May 1429. On the ground floor, a multimedia room traces the heroine's life. On the upper floors, the research and documentation centre has nearly 37,000 documents dedicated to the subject.
- Notre-Dame-des-Miracles chapel: South of Joan of Arc’s house is Saint Paul’s church. Ceramics from Orléans artist Jeanne Champillou portray Joan of Arc.
- Place du Martroi: A statue was first erected here in 1804, sculpted by Edme Gois. In 1855, it was decided to transfer it and replace it with a bronze monumental statue of a horse by Denis Foyatier. The low-relief carvings on the base were the work of Vital-Dubray and represent different scenes from the life of Joan of Arc, from the voices in Domremy to the stake in Rouen. The base was damaged during Liberation battles in 1944. The low-relief carvings were replaced in 1987 with moulds. The originals are kept in the Fine Arts Museum.
- The city walls in the 15th century: The city was surrounded with a wall from the 4th century. It was expanded westwards in the 14th century to enclose the hamlet of Dunois. A few portions of these Roman and medieval walls remain. To the east, it is still possible to see the White Tower and a section of the Roman curtain wall. To the north, the wall is visible in the courtyard of the former bishopric and near the cathedral; the bridge leading to the Martroi gate can be seen in the car park. To the west, sections of the medieval wall are still visible in Rue du Cloître-Saint-Paul and Rue de la Chèvre-qui-Danse.
Sources: Orléans Mairie – City of Art and History Department
THE SOUND AND LIGHT SHOW, “JOAN OF ARC, UNIVERSAL FACES”
Every year from 29 April to 8 May, Orléans celebrates its heroine during the Fêtes de Jeanne d'Arc. The sound and light show is one of the many events organised.
During your stay in Orléans, don't miss the Sound and light show "Joan of Arc, Universal Faces" seasons 1 and 2, projected onto the façade of Sainte-Croix cathedral from 19 May to 16 September 2017, in two or three nocturnal sessions per week.
The Sound and Light Show “Joan of Arc, Universal Faces” season 2
The Sound and Light Show “Joan of Arc, Universal Faces” season 1