Joan of Arc
French: Jeanne D'Arc
Statue in 2013
ArtistPaul Dubois
Year1922 (1922)
Dimensions210 cm × 190 cm (82 in × 74 in)
LocationWashington, D.C., United States
Coordinates38°55′14.52″N 77°2′8.57″W / 38.9207000°N 77.0357139°W / 38.9207000; -77.0357139
OwnerNational Park Service

Joan of Arc is a 1922 cast of Paul Dubois's 1889 statue of Joan of Arc, located at Meridian Hill Park in Washington, D.C., United States of America. Joan of Arc was originally surveyed as part of the Smithsonian's Save Outdoor Sculpture! survey in 1994.[1]


Joan of Arc is an equestrian statue, with Joan of Arc riding a trotting horse, resting upon a three-tiered granite base (H. 52 in. x W 11. ft.). Her body is twisted slightly, and her right arm is raised behind her. She is wearing a helmet with a raised visor and she looks skywards. In her left hand she holds the reins to her horse. The sword she originally held in her right hand was stolen in 1978,[2] and not replaced until December 2011.[3] The pedestal was designed by American artist H.L. Davis.[4]

The front of the base has the inscription:

LE 6 January 1922[1]


In 1921 the United States Commission of Fine Arts suggested that the sculpture be placed at the terrace of Meridian Hill Park.[4]


Jeanne d'Arc, Reims, France

The piece was first proposed in May 1916 by Mme Polifème to the Commission of Fine Arts in order to celebrate the friendship between France and the United States. During its creation, DuBois worked closely with the French Minister of Education and Fine Arts in producing a credible representation of the peasant girl.[5]

The statue was completed in 1922 in Paris; the original (fr) was cast in three copies, currently located respectively in Reims (1890), Paris (1895) and Strasbourg (1897). The replica in Washington was donated by Le Lyceum Société des Femmes de France to the women of the United States of America.[6]


Dedication ceremony

On 6 January 1923 when the piece was dedicated, President Warren G. Harding and the French Ambassador were the guests of honor. Mrs. Harding and Mme Jusserand, who represented France, also attended.[5]


According to the National Commission of Fine Art it was described, at the time, as being "regarded by artists as the finest equestrian statue of modern times."[5] Henry Bacon wrote that "Dubois's statue of Jeanne D'Arc is one of the fine things of the world and no setting is too good for it."[7]


It is the only equestrian statue of a woman in Washington, D.C.[8]

On the 500th anniversary of Joan's martyrdom, Paul Claudel, Ambassador of France, held a tribute to the Saint.[9]


The sculpture was surveyed for condition in 1994 and was described as needing treatment.[1]

See also


  1. ^ a b c Save Outdoor Sculptures! (1994). "Joan of Arc (sculpture)". SOS!. Smithsonian. Retrieved 25 January 2011.
  2. ^ Byrne, Ashley "Joan of Arc Statue", Not For Tourists, 6 April 2007, retrieved 25 January 2011.
  3. ^ "Holy Cow, Jeanne d'Arc Got Her Sword Back!!!". Prince of Petworth. 11 December 2011. Retrieved 12 December 2011.
  4. ^ a b "Joan of Arc Statue Ready For Capital", American Art News. Vol 20, No. 4., p. 4.
  5. ^ a b c Brigham, Gertrude Richardson. "A New Memorial to Jeanne D'Arc in Washington", Art and Archeology, Vol. 13, 1922, p. 96.
  6. ^ Field, Cynthia R., Isabelle Gournay and Thomas P. Somma. Paris on the Potomac. Ohio University Press, 2007, p. 67.
  7. ^ Cultural Tourism DC (2008). "Columbia Heights Cultural Assets Inventory" (PDF). Cultural Tourism DC. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 July 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2010.
  8. ^ National Park Service (2009). "Joan of Arc". Park Statues – Photos. National Park Service. Retrieved 25 May 2010.
  9. ^ Morrison, Ella J., "Chronicler's Report for 1929" Records of the Columbia Historical Society, Washington, D.C., Vol 33/34, pp. 341. Historical Society of Washington, D.C.,Retrieved 25 January 2011.