Gilles de Rais


Gilles de Rais
Gilles de Rais, painting by Éloi Firmin Féron, 1835.

He was a friend of Joan of Arc, and helped her in her military decisions. They attacked Orleans and forced English to abandon Orleans. Gilles personally crowned Charles VII at Reims as the new King of France.

When the king ended the campainged, Joan and Gilles did not return their homes. Joan was captured by the Duke of Burgundy and burned at the stake as a heretic in 1431. Giles, who was an arrogant, egotistical bully went into a near-psycotic range at the news of his friend’s death.

He soon partnered with an Italian priest, who claimed that the blood of children can turn iron and lead into gold. Together they killed a child, removed the eyes and heart, drained the blood to write a devil’s pact, and performed a ritual. He liked the torture and mutilation of children and took his own path.

He sent servants to invite families to send their children to him. During his dinner parties, he often rape a child, hang him on a hook, and continue to violate him as the child died. Sometimes, he cut the child down, reassure him, and then cut his throat as a foreplay. He might also hold the child between his legs and watch with pleasure as a servant remove the head. He often called a woman to curl the children’s hair and make up their faces. He would use the body for sexual purposes and save his blood and sine of their remains to use in magic rituals.

In 1440, he had a disbute with a priest over some property. He came under the juristiction of Catholic Church, and his enemies took the opportunity to file a suit with the bishop of Nantes. Charges were filed including sorcery, violating the immunity of the Church, and sexual perversion with the children. It was claimed that about 140 children had been the subject of his “entertainment.”

On October 26 1440, he was hanged and burned.

In Popular Culture

The Black Baron: The Strange Life of Gilles De Rais, 1930, a book by Tennille Dix
Bluebeard: The Life and Times of Gilles De Rais, 1980, a book by Leonard Wolf
Dark Star: The Satanic Rites of Gilles de Rais, 2005, a book by Georges Bataille
Gilles de Rais, 1971, a book by Jean Benedetti
Gilles de Rais, 2001, a book by Georges Bordonove
Gilles De Rais: The Banned Lecture, 1930, a book by Aleister Crowley
Gilles de Rais: The Original Bluebeard, 1926, a book by A. L. Vincent and Clare Binns
Laughter for the Devil: The Trials of Gilles De Rais Companion-In-Arms of Joan of Arc (1440), 1984, a book by Reginald Hyatte
The Legend of Gilles De Rais (1404-1440), 2003, a book by Val Morgan
The Life and Death of My Lord, Gilles de Rais, 1991, a book by Robert Nye
The Trial of Gilles de Rais, 1991, a book by Georges Bataille