The legendary martyr and French heroine, Joan of Arc, was born with the auspicious and adventurous constellation of Purnavasu rising on her Ascendant. Purnavasu gave her a love for her homeland and the protection, courage and ability to attain goals no matter how dangerous or far reaching they were. Gemini rising gave her mental prowess and communicative powers.
She displayed these qualities when she led a military crusade to help the King of France drive the English from French soil
during the Hundred years war. Her efforts led to the crowning of the dauphin Charles VII, at a time when Henry VI of England was claiming the French throne.
Her Ascendant lord is placed, unafflicted, in the warrior constellation of Purva Ashadha, in the seventh house of "open combat". This placement indicates a person of immense fervour and courage, skilled with horses, every ready to go to war. Purva Ashadha is the most warlike among the nakshatras. It gave her an attitude of invincibility and talent for inspiring and inciting others into battle.
Clad as a man in a suit of white armour, she lead the French troops into successful battles against the English. This was no easy task, considering she was a seventeen year old peasant girl. Despite her lack of experience and military training, Purva Ashadha, among other factors, gave her a natural talent for military strategy. Her confidence ,determination and skill with words was enough to persuade the future king to give her an army of generals and soldiers, who were also impressed enough to follow her.
Jupiter and Moon are placed in Virgo in the fourth house, in the sign of the Virgin. The Virgin Saviour archetype was her public image, Jupiter being the ruler of the 10th house. The presence of only benefics in angles including the planet representing the mind, Moon, gave her a pure heart, pure mind and a pure modest but somewhat naive character. These fourth house planets gave her a good upbringing and happy childhood. She was born into a pious and simple peasant farming family, as the third of five children.
Jupiter and Moon in the 4th house in the modest and feminine sign of Virgo made her adored by the common people. It also made her highly feminine and her feminine nature was clear in her matriarchal concern for her homeland, king and its people. This concern was part of her soul's duty, Moon being her atmakaraka planet. It prompted her to take the initiative to save her homeland during her Jupiter maturity. Jupiter matures in a native's life at 16 years of age. Jupiter and Moon are placed in the Martian constellation of Chitra, and Mars is placed in the third house ruling courage, combat and initiative. However because Chitra rules illusion and Jupiter (a temporary malefic for Virgo Ascendant) is influencing the 2nd lord Moon (ruling imagination), there was a certain amount of illusion and over expansiveness in the cognisance of her mission.
Jupiter and Moon form a strong Gajakesari yoga which, according to ancient texts makes one a "leader of their village, splendorous, intelligent, endowed with laudable virtues, roar like a lion in public assembly and will please the king". Due to Jupiter ruling her Ascendant nakshatra, it was during her Jupiter maturity 16 to 18 where she displayed her Gajakesari yoga and Purnavasu Ascendant qualities in full with unimpeded success.
At the tender age of 12/13, she experienced what she believed were divine revelations in the form of voices, bright lights, and the appearance of angels which inspired her mission. The third, fifth and twelfth lords Sun and Venus combine in the 8th house of psychic powers and clairvoyance, in the constellation of Uttarashadha. These planets gave her positive clairvoyant experiences, however the Sun's placement in the 8th house brings danger from authority.
Despite some good influences on the 8th house, the 8th and 9th lord Saturn is badly placed in its debilitation sign in the 11th house of idealism and ambition. Saturn receives no Neecha bhanga, and its weakness in the chart indicated the pursuit of unrealistic goals, misguided religious devotion, harmed longevity and sudden turn of bad luck which led to her final downfall. Even her elder sisters tragic death comes about due to Saturn's negative influence on the 11th house (house of elder siblings). The fact that this event took place in her Rahu- Saturn period establishes Saturns role.
The two feminine planets Moon and Venus are posited in hidden houses 4th and 8th in her chart. In order to protect herself from sexual harrassment & abuse, and in keeping with the male dominated climate of those times, she concealed her outer femininity and dressed in men's clothing. Her Ascendant and its lord are both placed in male nakshatras, hence her image on the battlefield was as "a man clad in white armour" in keeping with the purity aspect suggested by her Virgo planets.
It was the 3rd and 9th house axis in her chart where the focus of main events took place, as she was running Rahu major period during the beginning and end of her military career.
Ketu is placed with Mars in the third house in the constellation of Purva Phalguni and Rahu is importantly placed in the 9th house in the constellation of Purvabhadrapada.
These planets in the 3rd house gave her enormous martian drive and an energetic mindset. Purva Phalguni usually has the utmost concern for physical comforts, but the two malefics Mars and Ketu spoil this for her. It must have been a shock for her when she was finally confronted with the death and bloodshed which took place on the battle field. This was where the illusory nature of her 4th house planets and 11th house Saturn, and their romantic ideals were shattered to a certain extent. Despite this, Purva Phalguni has a desire to play the martyr and serve some noble cause for its glory aspect and this drove her onwards.
Her 9th house Rahu carried the energy of debilitated Saturn making her rigid and religiously fanatical in her quest to serve God and save the King and the country. Purvabhadrapada is a constellation where one can sacrifice everything, even their life to serve the cause they believe in. Her freedom as represented by Rahu, lay in her ability to choose the right cause to believe in (9th house affair), which would determine her final fate (8th and 9th lord Saturn). She believed in the farcical and corrupt religion propagated by the Church. Because of the debilitation of Saturn she didn't have enough discernment regarding 9th house matters like true religion & spirituality. Because of Rahu and Saturn she just ended up being a tool at the hands of the church in their political game.
The fanaticism of her idealism also blinded her from taking adequate and realistic precautions in her quest. Due to a lack of monetary support from the king, her army was too weak and unprepared to defend the French town of Compiegne (outside Paris), and in 1430 she was captured by the Burgundians, and sold to the English. The English, in turn, handed her over to the ecclesiastical court at Rouen led by an English bishop to be tried for witchcraft and heresy.
She was 18 years old when she was captured. She was undergoing Rahu Dasa Sun bhukti and had just entered her Rahu maturity age. Rahu matures in a native's life from their 18th birthday. Sun's placement in the 8th gives her danger from authority and harms her reputation (8th house ruling occult/witchcraft), and Rahu is weakened by its weak dispositor and placed in the nakshatra associated with death and pain, Purva bhadrapada. Sun is placed 12th from Rahu. During the time of her capture, Charles VII, the king she so faithfully served, could have easily paid her ransom to free her, but his betrayal in not coming to her rescue was due to his fear of her rising popularity with the masses.
After several months of interrogation engineered by her ecclesiastical trial, on May 30, 1431 Joan was burned at the stake.
Her death by fire is easily seen by the fiery influence of Sun on the 8th house, its placement there and rulership of the nakshatras of the planets there, and the placement of debilitated Saturn in a fire sign in the Sun's constellation Krittika. Even her Jupiter and Moon in the 4th house (signifying end of life) occupy Martian nakshatras, and Mars is in the fiery sign of Leo conjunct Ketu a fiery planet (one of the natural karakas of death).
Twenty-four years after her death, the Pope ordered a retrial on the heresy charges, which were then reversed because of numerous errors and procedural questions regarding the fairness of the original trial. In 1920, St. Joan was canonized by Pope Benedict XV.
The power of the 8th house planets immortalised her after her death, the Sun being very strong in its own nakshatra UttaraShadha and conjunct a strong benefic planet for Gemini Ascendant, Venus. It was the governing authority (Sun) who secured her place in history, which could not have been for any other purpose except to secure more power for the church. This showed the complexity and duality of Joan's chart and the conflicting role that the 8th house played in her life.
Her intentions were noble but her fate/death finally fell into the hands of a sinister and corrupt ruling elite, due to her own misguided devotion and misunderstanding of the 9th house matters, religion and spirituality.
That she was exonerated from her heresy charges in a second trial, is in keeping with the nature of her Purnavasu Ascendant. Purnavasu's name translates into "Good Again" and usually gives positive results the second time around.