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Who Is That Man, Anyway?
Subject: * Joan of Arc
Sculptor: Paul Dubois
Location: Meridian Hill Park
( Florida Avenue & 16th )
This statue stands at the top of the fountains at Meridian Hill Park, a beautifully landscaped area in the Mount Pleasant neighborhood. The subject is the legendary Joan of Arc (1412-1431), a young French woman who heard voices of angels commanding her to raise troops to fight the English and Burgundians in the Hundred Years War. She succeeded in her mission, but she was captured by the Burgundians in 1430 who turned her over to the English.
Charged with witchcraft and fraud, she was eventually convicted of persistently wearing male clothing. She signed a statement abjuring her actions but recanted two days later. She was tried again, this time as a "relapsed heretic" and eventually convicted. She was burned at the stake on May 30, 1431 when she was 19 years old. She was canonized in 1920.
The statue is a gift of the women of France to the women of the United States and is the only equestrian statue with a female subject in the city. It is a replica of a statue that stands on the grounds of Rheims Cathedral in France.
Photos and text copyright © 2001 Jean K. Rosales and Michael R. Jobe, All Rights Reserved
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