Charles (VII, King of France 1422-1461)

 Born  1403   Born At  
 Died  1461   Buried At  
 Father  Charles (VI, King of France 1380-1422)   Mother  Isabeau (of Bavaria)
Charles was the son of Charles VI. He became king of France in 1422 when his father died but was not crowned until 1429, seven years later. Charles owed his crown to Joan of Arc who insisted she had been told by God that he was the true heir to the French throne. With Joan's leadership and inspiration the French won several key battles that led to Charles being crowned at Rheims, the traditional site of French coronations.


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1428 Oct 12  25yrsSiege of Orléans
 The Duke of Bedford led an English army to surround the French town of Orléans and to begin the siege. Orléans was chosen because it was the most important city still under the control of Charles VII. The city was well prepared for the siege and even though the there were a small number of French soldiers in the city the defences held. Thomas Montacute, earl of Salisbury, was killed when he was hit by debris of an exploding cannonball. The siege continued into the harsh winter. The death of the Thomas Montacute meant that the Earl's title was transferred to Richard Neville who had married his daughter Anne.[1]

Episode: Henry VI and Joan of Arc  
1429 Feb 23  26yrsJoan begins her mission
 Joan left Vaucouleurs dressed as a man and with an escort of attendants. They headed for Chinon where Charles VII was staying. They reached Chinon in early March.

Episode: Henry VI and Joan of Arc  
 Mar  Joan visits Charles VII
 Joan was granted an audience with the dauphin at Vaucouleurs. At the meeting Charles had disguised himself as a servant and had a servant dress as himself. Joan was not fooled and picked the king out. Charles was impressed when Joan told him that God had told her that he was the true heir.

Episode: Henry VI and Joan of Arc  
 Jul 17  Charles VII crowned at Rheims
 Joan of Arc and the dauphin entered Rheims. Charles was crowned in the Cathedral and became King of France.

Episode: Henry VI and Joan of Arc  
 Sep 8  Joan fails to take Paris
 The French fail to retake Paris that had been captured by the English. Joan was slightly injured during the fighting.

Episode: Henry VI and Joan of Arc  
1435 Sep 21  32yrsTreaty of Arras
 The English lost the support of the Duke of Burgundy against Charles VII with the signing of the Treaty of Arras where the Duke recognised Charles as the true King of France.[2]

Episode: Henry VI and Joan of Arc  
1436 Apr 13  33yrsThe French retake Paris
 The long occupation of Paris by the English was ended when the French rescued the city.[2]

Episode: Henry VI and Joan of Arc  
1444 Apr  41yrsTreaty of Tours
 A peace treaty signed between Henry VI of England and Charles VII of France. The treaty resulted in five years of peace between the two countries and included the arrangement of marriage between Henry VI and Margaret of Anjou.[3]

Episode: Henry VI and Joan of Arc  
1449 Mar  46yrsFougeres captured by the English
 Several years after the Treaty of Arras, after which the conflict between England and France had subdued, an English force attacked and took over the town of Fougeres in Brittany. This sparked the resumption of the war between the two countries.[2]

Episode: Henry VI and Joan of Arc  
 Nov  Siege of Rouen
 A large army of French soldiers were able to retake the cities in Normandy that had been captured by the English. Rouen, the last to fall, was retaken in November after a siege of almost three weeks. This was a major victory for Charles, the French king and a disaster for Henry VI.[4]

Episode: Henry VI and Joan of Arc  
1461 Jul  58yrsLancastrian Embassy in France
 An embassy of several Lancastrians, including the Duke of Somerset, travelled to France and the court of Charles VII to ask for men and a loan of money to continue the fight against the Yorkists. But the death of Charles on the 22nd put an end to their plans. Their situation became serious when they were arrested. The new French King, Louis XI, at this stage of the Wars of the Roses was a Yorkist supporter. [5]

Episode: Wars of the Roses  
 Jul 22  Death of Charles VII
 Charles VII died in July of 1461 after a long illness resulting in an abscess in his mouth that meant he could not eat or drink. Louis, his on, had refused to
see his dying father, but as soon as he learnt of the King's death Louis headed to Rheims and Paris to claim the French throne.[2] 

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