Catholic World News

French buyer refuses British government request to return St. Joan of Arc's ring

March 23, 2016

A theme park in France has refused an English request for return of a ring that is believed to have belonged to St. Joan of Arc.

The ring, apparently given to St. Joan by her parents at her First Communion, had been carried away to England after her martyrdom.  It was purchased at auction by Puy de Fou, a historical theme park, for almost €300,000, and returned with great fanfare to France. But the new owner disclosed that the British government has asked for the return of the ring, saying that it was sold without the export license that is required for items of historical value. 

"It is inconceivable that the ring leaves France," said Nicolas de Villiers, who supervises the theme park. He said that returning the ring would be an act of "appeasement." 


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  • Posted by: nix898049 - Mar. 25, 2016 1:08 AM ET USA

    Though a strange way to get the relic back, I'm very glad to hear of its return to France. The only relic there is of her, I believe. Maybe someday it will be properly kept at the Cathedral of Reims. Then again, it could do more to enlighten people to her importance where it is.

  • Posted by: donaldsmock7818 - Mar. 24, 2016 3:15 PM ET USA

    It is good that Monsieur de Villiers has stuck to his guns on this issue. The ring of Ste. Jeanne d'Arc belongs to FRANCE and NOT to England. The English have a long history of looting the patrimony of other nations, as e.g. the infamous story concerning the Parthenon Marbles ("Elgin Marbles") , the seedy acquisition of which was even decried by Lord Byron as "vandalism or looting" ! We in America owe a great deal to Ste.Jeanne d'Arc also IMHO.Not enough room here to decribe that thesis.