The Life of Joan of Arc by Anatole France (1908)


Title page from the original 1908 publication of The Life of Joan of Arc by Nobel-prize winner Anatole France

Read it online for free through Project Gutenberg

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This classic book is still in print today. Anatole France won the Nobel Prize for literature in 1921 – a noted man of letters, he was a leading figure of French literary life. In the 1920 his writings were put on the Index of Forbidden Books of the Roman Catholic Church. Described by Charles T. Wood, co-editor of Fresh Verdicts on Joan of Arc, as “the classic skeptic’s account, usually underrated on that account, but very solidly based in all the documents that it also has the virtue of quoting extensively.”

From the publisher: “Anatole France, the Nobel prize winning French author, turns to a historical subject for this two-volume Life of Joan of Arc. Thoroughly researched with a wealth of references, he sought to bring a rationalist viewpoint to the legendary French heroine and to examine and, where necessary, overturn the superstitious additions to her history. He also hoped to counteract the Church’s interpretation of her life.”

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