Francois Villon, (1431-c. 63). French poet. In 1455 he killed a man, possibly in self-defence, and had to flee from Paris for a while. The following year he returned and robbed a Paris church. Villon’s Poems includes his famous ‘Ballad of the Hanged’, probably written in 1463 when he was sentenced to death for brawling. The sentence was commuted to ten years’ banishment.