Joan of Arc
Joan must be one of the best-known figures from the Middle Ages and opinion is divided about her. Love her or loathe her, her story is fascinating and although almost no artefacts remain that were contemporary to her, the last two years of her life are remarkably well documented, not least the transcript of her trial. It’s unlikely that she led an army, but she certainly inspired one to victory and one of the most extraordinary things is that she persuaded the Dauphin to let her try. Encouraged by voices in her head, she appeared fearless and dignified.
She was evidently a highly intelligent young woman with a low regard for authority and a single-minded determination to achieve her aim: to get the Dauphin crowned.