Meridian Hill Park’s Joan of Arc is missing her sword.
The statue of the French heroine has been without a weapon since at least last night. A Borderstan editor photographed the sword-less Joan of Arc this morning.
The weapon normally is in her right hand as she sits atop a horse, ready for battle from her perch overlooking the park’s cascading fountain.
But she didn’t lose the weapon in a fight. Vandals apparently yanked the sword from her hand as recently as yesterday.
“It appears that someone vandalized the statue, and we’ve filed a report with U.S. Park Police,” National Park Service spokeswoman Emily Linroth said. “We estimate that it happened within the last 24 hours.”
This isn’t the first time the statue of Joan of Arc, also known as Jeanne d’Arc, has lost her sword.
Someone stole the weapon in 1978, according to local history blog Ghosts of DC. It wasn’t until 2011 when she got a replacement.
The statue, which is a replica of a monument in Cathedral de Notre Dame in Rheims, France, was a gift from France’s women to America’s women. President Warren G. Harding and French ambassador Jean Jules Jusserand in 1922 attended its dedication, which drew thousands of spectators.
The incident happened on the 1900 block of 14th Street NW about 4 a.m. Sunday.
The victim was changing lanes as he approached U Street when another driver pulled up alongside him, authorities said. The new arrival, who had is car window down, then asked the victim what he was doing.
The victim said he moved into another lane.