8. Joan of Arc: Joan of Arc rallied French troops, drove English armies from France and helped crown Charles VII king of France. Later captured by the English, she was tried by a Church court and found guilty of consorting with the devil and burned at the stake.
Modern doctors and scholars have “diagnosed” Joan of Arc with disorders ranging from epilepsy to schizophrenia. Around the age of 12 or 13, Joan of Arc apparently began hearing voices and experiencing visions, which she interpreted as signs from God. During her trial, she testified that angels and saints began instructing her to deliver France from the invading English and establish Charles VII as the country’s rightful king. The Maid asserted that a bright light often accompanied the visions and that she heard the voices more distinctly when bells sounded. Based on these details, some experts have suggested that Joan suffered from one of numerous neurological and psychiatric conditions that trigger hallucinations or delusions, including migraines, bipolar disorder and brain lesions, to name just a few. Yet another theory holds that she contracted bovine tuberculosis, which can cause seizures and dementia, from drinking unpasteurized milk and tending cattle as a young girl.