March 25

March 25, 1431

Palm Sunday, March the twenty-fifth. Jeanne asks permission to hear Mass

On the following Sunday morning, Palm Sunday, the twenty-fifth day of March, in Jeanne’s prison in the castle of Rouen, we the abovenamed bishop spoke with her in the presence of Jean Beaupère, Nicolas Midi, Pierre Maurice, doctors, and Thomas de Courcelles, bachelor of sacred theology.

And we said to Jeanne that many times, particularly the day before, she had asked that by reason of the solemnity of these present days and this time she should be permitted to hear Mass on this Palm Sunday; therefore we asked her whether if we allowed her she would abandon male costume and put on a woman’s dress, as she had been wont in the country of her birth and as women of her country were wont to do.

To which Jeanne replied by requesting us to permit her to hear Mass in the male costume which she wore and to receive the sacrament of the Eucharist on Easter Day. Then we told her to answer our question, whether she would abandon man’s dress if she were given that permission. But She answered that she had not had counsel thereon and could not yet wear woman’s dress.

And we asked her if she would take counsel of her saints to wear woman’s dress,

to which she replied that it might well be permitted her to hear Mass as she was, which she sovereignly desired, but as for changing her dress she could not and it was not in her.

After the said lawyers had exhorted her by all the goodness and piety which she seemed to have, to wear a dress fitting to her sex,

the said Jeanne answered that it was not in her to do it; and if it were it would soon be done.

Then she was told to speak with her voices to discover if she could once more wear woman’s dress to receive the Eucharist at Easter.

To which Jeanne replied that as far as in her lay she would not receive the Eucharist by changing her costume for a woman’s; she asked to be permitted to hear Mass in her male attire, adding that this attire did not burden her soul and that the wearing of it was not against the Church.

Of all this Jean d’Estivet, the Promoter, asked an account be drawn up, in the presence of Adam Milet, king’s secretary, William Brolbster and Pierre Orient of the dioceses of Rouen, of London, and Châlons.

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