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Joan of Arc had a famously volatile temper



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4. Joan of Arc had a famously volatile temper.
Once placed in control of the French army, the teenage peasant didn’t hesitate to chew out prestigious knights for swearing, behaving indecently, skipping Mass or dismissing her battle plans; she even accused her noble patrons of spinelessness in their dealings with the English. According to witnesses at her retrial, Joan once tried to slap a Scottish soldier—the Scots teamed up with France during the Hundred Years’ War—who had eaten stolen meat. She also supposedly drove away the mistresses and prostitutes who traveled with her army at swordpoint, hitting one or two in the process. And personal attacks by the English, who called her rude names and joked that she should return home to her cows, reportedly made Joan’s blood boil. The Maid’s short fuse is evident in transcripts of her court hearings; when a clergyman with a thick regional accent asked what language her voices spoke, for instance, she retorted that they spoke French far better than he did.



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