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maid of Orleans, is yet revered by the French, even as that of Tell is honoured in Switzerland, or those of the lionhearted Bruce and the chivalrous Wallace in the romantic land of Scott and Burns. It is not long ago that a grand and imposing fête, celebrated with all the pomp and splendour which the Roman Church knows so well how to produce, and at which the late emperor himself was found cordially assisting, testified to the pride and enthusiasm which_the story of poor La Pucelle can yet kindle within the hearts of our Gallic brethren. Centuries have elapsed since the illfated maiden perished in the devouring flames lit in the ancient market square of Rouen by her merciless captors; but the history of her gallant and patriotic cndeavours to free Normandy from the hated yoke of England continues fresh and interesting as ever, and it is the duty of the tourist in Rouen to visit the Old Market, now known as the Place de la Pucelle, where was consummated the tragedy which cast such an indelible stain on the English escutcheon. Tourists having a little time at their disposal would do well to prolong their stay in Rouen, if only for the sake of familiarising themselves more closely with the legends and traditions recorded of the patriotic heroine. Enthusiastic Frenchmen love to relate how the humble peasant girl commenced what she conceived to be her mission, by suddenly appearing before the young French king-half frightened out of his senses by the successes of the English—in the great hall at Chinon, where, surrounded by his steel-clad warriors, his features illuminated by the lurid glare of the blazing torches, he listened, with mingled hope and distrust, to the startling prediction of how his enemies should be defeated, and he himself crowned by the hands of Joan in the cathedral of Rheims. What a strange and startling spectacle was that of the warrior-maid, as, clad in complete armour, bareheaded, her beautiful hair falling in long curls about her neck, and mounted on a fiery charger, she made her appearance before the ancient town of Blois, where, raising with one hand her banner of white silk, and with the other flourishing the glittering sword given her by the French king, she so aroused the courage of the soldiery, that they fought with the strength and determination of conquerors, sweeping their dismayed English adversaries before them, like chaff before the wind ! But what need to relate the world-famous exploits of the Maid of Orleans ? Are we not as familiar with them as with the story of the lion-hearted Richard, or of the gentle Eleanor, who so lovingly sucked the venom from her kingly husband's wound? They form some of the most stirring, romantic, and interesting episodes recorded in history. The fate of Joan was in harmony with the grand and impressive drama of her life. Captured by the English forces at Compiègne, now famous for its hunting forest, some 30,000 acres in extent, she was relentlessly hurried to the castle of Beaulieu, then to that of Beaurevoir, thence to Arras, thence to the castle of Crotoy, whence, after six long weary months of imprisonment, she was conveyed to Rouen, where she was confined, say some, in the great tower of the castle, the only portion of the edifice yet remaining. It is known as the Tour du Donjon, and is situate in the convent of the Ursulines, in the Rue Morand, within three minutes' walk of the Victoria Hotel, near the railway station. Here she was treated with great cruelty. Heavily ironed, fastened at night by heavy chains to her bed, and with three English guards constantly stationed in her cell, it is no wonder that she nearly yielded to despair. The farce of trial took place in the Castle Chapel, now demolished, and the equally senseless ceremony of recantation in the Cemetery of St. Ouen, near the famous church of that name. The crowning act which enshrined her name with the halo of martyrdom was perpetrated in the ancient market square. Guarded by a body
a of 800 strongly-armed English soldiers, she was conducted from the castle tower, through some of the most picturesque streets of the ancient city, which were crowded with people eager to take a parting gaze of the pale-featured but firmhearted maiden, as she heroically proceeded to the place of death. As she neared the fatal pile, her fortitude nearly forsook her. “O, Rouen, Rouen!” she piteously cried, “it is here, indeed, that I must die.” At that time the market square was nearly double its present size. Here she was fastened to the stake, and as the devouring flames leapt mercilessly about her, she raised her tearful eyes to heaven, and with the name of her Divine Redeemer on her lips, expired, a victim to English superstition and revenge. The king of England, writing to his uncle, says she was executed “on account of the great damages and inconveniences, the horrible murders and heinous cruelties, and other innumerable evils she had committed” against his “sacred person” and “loyal obedient subjects.” The spot of execution is indicated by a fountain, surmounted by a statue of not very creditable taste: A close examination of the fountain is rendered inconvenient by the immediate proximity of a cabstand, but some of the ancient houses in the square are well worth more than a passing glance.
We are now in the oldest portion of the city, a neighbourhood where foot pavements are almost unknown, where the streets are so narrow that the tops of the houses on each side nearly touch each other; and where the mediæval architecture of many of the buildings carries the imagination back to the time when Rouen formed the proud and stately capital of Normandy. Several of these ancient buildings are celebrated as being the birthplaces of Corneille the poet, Touvenet, Boïeldieu, Armand Carrel the journalist, and other remarkable men. In the Place de la Pucelle is situated the Hotel du Bourgtheroude, an ancient edifice well known to antiquarians. The remains of the Abbey of St. Armand are also worth a visit. There are several other ancient buildings, and on the Quai Napoleon is yet to be seen the gate of Guillaume-Lion, the only remaining ancient gate of the city. There are likewise several ancient fountains, of which the most noteworthy are those of Croix de Pierre, the Cross, the Grosse-horloge, the Marche-Neuf, St. Malcon, de la Pucelle, and of Lisieux, the latter structure being the most remarkable of the whole. The Palais de Justice is an ancient structure, almost Flemish in appearance, and exceedingly picturesque. The Covered Markets also deserve a visit. They are very old, and resemble a ruined palace rather than a building used for trading purposes. The Exchange, Tribunal of Commerce, Custom House and College, scarcely call for attention, while the Hotel de Ville will disappoint many by the plainness of its architecture. The Museum of Antiquities should on no account remain unvisited. It is situated in the cloisters of an ancient convent, in the Rue Beauvoisine, and contains, among other things, several documents with the seals of Richard Cour de Lion, also the heart of the same monarch preserved in a glass box. There is also a parchment with the seal of William the Conqueror, and other relics of considerable interest. Passing to the broad and noble quay which forms the city bank of the Seine, we find the river crowded with shipping of all countries. Here the Seine is crossed by two elegant bridges, one, the Pont de Pierre, having for its centre the extremity of the Island Lacroix, on which has been erected a characteristic statue of the poet Corneille. Crossing to the opposite bank of the river, we find ourselves in a region of bonded
warehouses, workshops, docks, factories, and other indications of busy industry and enterprise; forming a strange and creditable contrast to the idleness and absence of business-like energy which marks the French capital. Passing along the Quai Napoleon, we reach the commencement of the magnificent series of boulevards which, erected on the site of the ancient ramparts, encircle the city, forming a most delightful promenade, of which the citizens are not a little proud. But we might linger for hours in Rouen without exhausting its stock of sights. On market days especially there is much to be seen, the country people at such times pouring in great numbers into the city, where their quaint head-dresses and costumes form a conspicuous feature. There, too, the religious ceremonies of the Roman Catholic Church are carried out more completely than in Paris. When a funeral takes place, instead of employing the hearse, as in Paris, the coffin is placed on a bier, which, preceded by torch-bearers, priests, incense bearers, crucifix, and banners, is carried in picturesque procession towards the city cemetery. Sisters of mercy, schoolmasters with hats like coal-scuttles, abbés in close-fitting cassocks, labourers in blue trousers and wooden shoes, wonderfully attired gendarmes, and moustached officials abound everywhere. Some of the social habits prevalent in Rouen differ largely from those in England, and even from those of Paris. For instance, we enter a barber's shop for the purpose of being shaved. We are waited upon by a brisk little maiden, who tucks a napkin round our neck, and then, instead of lathering our chin, brings us a large dish of hot water. Wondering what on earth is going to be performed on our features, and apprehensive of some mistake, we make energetic signs that we desire to be shaved, not washed; but the fair barberess is inexorable. Shouting, “Oui, oui," by a dexterous movement