French to English Translation of the Famous Sayings of Joan of Arc
By Allen Williamson
Will be followed by
SAINT JOAN'S NOTABLE QUOTABLES
The following quotations shed light on her character or beliefs, or examples of the sort of things that she said frequently.
"Je me attens a Dieu, mon createur, de tout; je layme (l'ayme) de tout mon cuer"
"I place trust in God, my creator, in all things; I love Him with all my heart."
"Je suis cy envoiée de par Dieu, le roy du ciel"
"I am sent here by God, the King of Heaven".
"Je me attens a mon juge, cest (c'est) le roy du ciel et de la terre"
"I trust in my Judge, who is the King of Heaven and Earth".
"Aide toy, Dieu te aidera"
"Help yourself and God will help you" - the medieval French equivalent of - " God helps those who help themselves"
"Je le sçay aussi bien comme vous estes ici"
"I know this [that the English will be driven out of France] as well as (I know that) you are here." addressed to Cauchon at the trial.
"Elles ayment ce que nostre Seigneur ayme, et haient ce que Dieu hait"
"They [Saints Catherine and Margaret] love that which our Lord loves, and hate that which God hates".
"Gentil Dauphin, j'ai nom Jehanne la Pucelle"
"Gentle Dauphin [Charles VII], I am called Joan, the Maid."
Since she didn't swear, she used two mild expressions as a substitute, and tried to force the men in charge of her army to do the same:
"Par mon martin!"
"By my staff!"
"En nom Dieu!"
"In God's name!"
The questioning at this trial was often tedious, repetitive and of little relevance, and one gets the impression that she often grew weary from the process. She used the following phrases frequently in response to the more monotonous or pointless questions:
"Vous dictes que vous estes mon juge, je ne sçay si vous l'estes; mais advisez bien que ne jugés mal, que vous vous mectriés en grant danger; et vous en advertis, afin que se (si) nostre, Seigneur vous en chastie, que je fais mon debvoir de le vous dire".
"You say that you are my judge, I don't know if you are [or not]; but take care not to judge wrongly, lest you place yourself in great danger; and [I] notify you of this, so that if our Lord punishes you for it, I will have done my duty in telling you." This was no idle comment: Bishop Cauchon had always been something of a revolutionary (despite the aura of orthodoxy he tried to project), and his conduct during the trial earned him the censure of Inquisitor Jean Bréhal (who essentially accused him of heresy) when the case was retried.
"Il est bon a savoir"
"It's good to know." While this phrase is usually translated as an affirmative response, I think she also sometimes used it when a question was so absurd that she felt there was little point in giving a straight answer.
"Move on [to the next one]." Something she said whenever she had already answered a question.
"Ce n'est pas de votre procès"
"That does not concern your trial." Another recurring statement, which she said whenever they asked her a question which had no relevance at all.