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of Orleans, which he was then besieging, he would consider all France conquered. Just then, however, a poor peasant girl, Joan of Arc, fancied that she had been chosen by heaven to save her country from the English. She 5 was good and earnest, and spoke so convincingly that people finally believed her. A knight from the neighborhood took her to Bourges, where the king and his advisers allowed her to do as she wished and lead an army to the rescue of Orleans.

The common soldiers, who were very superstitious, believed that Joan had seen visions and had spoken to angels, so they were ready to do all she told them. They felt sure they would win as long as she led them on.

The rumor of her mission soon reached the ears of the English sol15 diers, who dreaded her appearance, and said that if heaven had sent her, their resistance would be vain.

This state of feeling in the two armies grew much more marked when Joan actually fought her way into Orleans,

bringing provisions to the famished inhabitants. They 20 received her with rapture, and called her the “Maid of

Orleans.” But Joan was not yet satisfied, and she vowed she would not rest until she had driven the English away from Orleans and taken the dauphin to Rheims to be crowned in the same cathedral as all the kings before him.

Joan kept her word. The English fled as she drew near. Town after town opened its gates when she appeared, wearing a suit of armor like a man, and sitting astride a great battle steed. Advancing thus, she won back many

of the lost provinces, and at last Charles VII was formally 30 crowned. Then she said that her mission was ended, and begged permission to go home and tend her sheep.

But the king would not let her go, and the generals, knowing the effect of her presence upon the minds of both

armies, urged her to remain. Joan of Arc sadly yielded 35 to their entreaties, but all her joyous confidence now for



sook her. The result was that in spite of her courage the French soldiers ceased to believe in her. One day, when she had headed a sally from the town of Compiegne, they even treacherously forsook her.

Poor Joan fell into the hands of a French knight, an ally of the English, and he, seeing that her king had basely deserted her, sold her into their hands. Joan of Arc was then thrust into prison, treated with the most inhuman

cruelty, and, after being accused of heresy and witchcraft, 10 she was burned at the stake in Rouen, and her ashes were

cast into the Seine! But the heroic Maid of Orleans died so bravely, on the very square where her statue now stands, that the English soldiers began to fear that they had killed

a saint. Their dread, and the Frenchmen's indignation, 15 gave the latter the advantage, and at each new defeat the

English cried that it was a judgment against them for burning Joan.

When the Duke of Bedford saw that France was lost, he died of grief, and was buried in Rouen. Some time 20 afterwards Charles VII became master of that city, and

his soldiers proposed to open the duke's tomb and scatter his ashes abroad; but the duke had fought so bravely that Charles would not allow this, and said: “No; let him

repose in peace; and be thankful that he does repose, for 25 were he to awake he would make the stoutest of us tremble.”

The war between France and England went on several years longer, with occasional pauses. But the French steadily advanced, and the English finally found that the

Hundred Years' War, which lasted from about 1338 to 30 1453, cost them no end of men and money, but brought

them little besides the glory won in the three great battles of Crecy, Poitiers, and Agincourt. During the reign of Henry VI they lost, in fact, all the territory they had

won in France, except the city of Calais, which they were 35 to hold for another century.


By what right was the crown of France claimed for Henry VI?
To whom did it rightfully belong? Why?
What is the meaning of “dauphin”?
Why did the Scots help Charles?
Who was Joan of Arc?
What did she wish to do?

How was she regarded by the French soldiers? By the English soldiers?

Why was she called the “Maid of Orleans”?
When did she consider her mission ended?
Why did she not go home and tend her sheep as she wished?
What happened when the soldiers ceased to believe in her?
How did Charles repay her for what she did for him?
What effect did her death have upon the English?
Locate on your

ap of France the following places: Bourges, Orleans, Rheims, Rouen, Crécy, Portiers, Agincourt, and Calais.


358:9 Treaty of Troyes. A treaty by which Henry V of England was to marry Catharine, daughter of Charles VI of France, and by which Henry V was accepted by the French as regent and heir of France.


Agincourt (aj'in-kort)
Bourges (börzh)
Calais (kä-lā')
Compiègne (kon-pyāny')

Crécy (krā-sē')
Poitiers (pwä-tyā')
Rheims (rēmz)
Troyes (trwä)



When Victoria became queen, every one felt a tender interest in the young girl who was thus called upon to stand at the head of a great nation. Her coronation, which took place on June 28, 1838, was one of the grandest sights 5 London has ever seen. She was crowned at Westminster Abbey, in the midst of the peers of the realm, who came up to do homage to her. Each one in turn bent the knee before her, and, removing his coronet, touched the queen's crown,

saying, “I do become your liegeman of life and limb and of 10 earthly worship; and faith and love will I bear unto you

to live and die against all manner of folk. So help me God.”

Even there, at the coronation, the young queen showed how kind-hearted she was; for when a very aged peer 15 stumbled and fell, she stretched out her hand to help him

rise, and came down a few steps so that he need not exert himself too much to reach her.

Now you may think it is great fun to be a queen, but it is really hard work. From the very first, Queen Victoria 20 spent many hours every day going over state papers with

her ministers, who carefully explained everything to her. This was far more tedious for a young girl than any lesson could be; for many things were difficult to understand, and all the papers were very dry.

The queen's first minister and her good friend was Lord * From Guerber's “Story of the English.” Copyright 1899 by American Book Company. Used by permission of the publishers.


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Melbourne, who took a fatherly interest in her, and who once said of her: “She never ceases to be a queen, and is always the most charming, cheerful, obliging, and unaffected queen in the world."

” It was while this minister was helping her to govern that a long-planned marriage was arranged between Victoria (the "little Mayflower," as her German relatives called her) and Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha. Victoria

being a queen, and Albert only a prince, she was told 10 that it would not be proper for him to propose to her.

She therefore had to propose to him; and she once said that it was the hardest thing she ever had to do.

Next, she had to appear alone before Parliament, to tell the House of Lords and the House of Commons what she 15 intended to do, and to receive their good wishes. This too

was a great trial for so young a girl, but she never had cause to regret it, for her marriage was very happy.

Queen Victoria and the Prince Consort (for so he was later called) were a most devoted couple, and they lived 20 a quiet, beautiful, happy, and exemplary life. Not only

was the Prince Consort a good man, but he was wise and well educated, and so modest and unselfish that all he ever asked was to help the queen and her people.

During the following years many changes took place in 25 the royal family, where nine children played in turn in the

royal nursery. Changes were going on elsewhere too; for since Victoria had come to the throne, among countless other improvements, there had been established the first penny post, the telegraph, and the Atlantic cable.

To show the people how many new inventions had been made, and what wonderful things the world contains, the Prince Consort planned the first "world's fair," or "peace festival." It was held in the Crystal Palace, near London,

and was such a success that it has been followed by many 35 others in different parts of the world. These fairs have


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