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17

They got their weapons from the Hôtel national des Invalides, which were stormed by a Parisian mob earlier the same day. Much of the armaments previously stored there had been removed just two days earlier, but the revolutionaries still managed to acquire ~28,000-32,000 (sources vary) muskets hidden in the cellars and the church. They also found several ...


10

As far as I know, the main issues in French foreign policy of the period were: Friendship with USA, with which France shared common ideological ground. In particular, the United States Declaration of Independence, United States Constitution and United States Bill of Rights much influenced the French Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen and ...


9

The reason for the meeting was finance. I don't have that research to hand, but France was absolutely screwed for finance. They had a structural deficit and had tried everything (including inventing entirely new and fantastic monetary systems, firing successive finance ministers, etc. There wasn't a mechanism to levy new taxes or to change the allocation of ...


8

Short Answer: You're both correct. Which date to pick for ending the French Revolution is a matter of opinion. Your friend is not wrong. The downfall and execution of Maximilien de Robespierre is considered by many to be an end date for the French Revolution. For many historians, the end of Robespierre coincided with the end of the Revolution itself. ...


8

As a bride, Marie Antoniette might have been disliked by some due to the longstanding conflict between the two dynasties. But in terms of legitimacy, I'm not sure what could be illegitimate about being an Archduchess of Austria. Indeed, I'm not sure how one could ask for a more legitimate bride than a princess of Europe's most prestigious royal house. In ...


7

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the first use of the word "van" in print to refer to "A covered vehicle chiefly employed for the conveyance of goods" was in 1829. These were not motor vehicles as we think of vans today, just horse-drawn wagons. See the Wikipedia page for Pantechnicon van for information and a photo of a particular type of English ...


7

Novels are not typically accorded a high status as a primary source by historians because they have a purpose other than the truthful representation of the past as it was, as recreated from the documentary records of the past. Novels are incapable of "accuracy" in this sense. Similarly: plays and movies are incapable of historical accuracy. Novels may ...


7

The League of the Sublime and Perfect Masters (Sublime Perfect Masters / Society of Perfect Sublime Masters) was a conspiratorial and revolutionary society, one of the Carbonari groups. It was created in 1818 by Filippo Buonarroti and it operated as a Masonic Lodge. Its headquarters were in Turin and its immediate goal was independence from Austria. Its ...


6

In keeping with your question, I'll leave out instances of human body part use for purely utilitarian reasons (organ donation) and focus on things done for symbolic reasons (dehumanizing, revenge, magic, etc), especially with reference to victims of political persecution or on the losing end. Do correct me if I've interpreted your questions wrongly :) ...


6

The points that Samuel raised are all valid, books don't really attempt to present a fair and balanced depiction of events, however I still think it's a good question, and to answer your question directly: Yes, for the most part it is pretty accurate, as long as you recognize the perspective that it's coming from. As the title suggests, the book is focused ...


6

The French Republican Calendar started counting years from 22 September 1792, the day the French First Republic was proclaimed. Year I was the first year of the Republic, and so on. You can read more about the calendar's design on Wikipedia.


6

I found another hint in Histoire du dimanche: de 1700 à nos jours by Robert Beck page 154 on bottom. See the following google books link. Le surplus en travail que provoque le rythme décadaire, pourrait également constituer une raison du rejet dont le nouveau temps est la victime. [...] Les instigateur des lois sur l'observation des décadis de l'an ...


6

Robespierre was of the opinion that the best way to ensure the success of the revolution was to execute all the enemies of the revolution. A tyrannical position that he, as so many others, justified with nonsensical slogans. The government in a revolution is the despotism of liberty against tyranny. -- Robespierre, 1794 Such policy will soon end up ...


5

The striking thing was that France and Austria had been political rivals going back to the time of Francis I (France) and Charles V (Austria). Until the mid 18th century. After winning the 100 Years' War, France became the strongest power in western Europe. Spain and Austria (counting the Holy Roman Empire) were two and three, and when Princess Juana of ...


5

As for the symbolism of the white color, Wikipedia has a couple of explanations : White had long featured prominently on French flags and is described as the "ancient French colour" by Lafayette. White was added to the "revolutionary" colors of the militia cockade to "nationalise" the design, thus creating the tricolour cockade. And also The ...


5

As far as I remember, mostly it was to survive against the onslaught of the rest of Europe. Most of the initial stage of the revolution was seen as an internal matter to France but some of the propaganda of the revolution was spread abroad. All the crowned heads of Europe were (rightly) worried about the events in France. So, spreading the revolution was ...


5

There was a set of reforms introduced by Napoleon into conquered countries The law based on Napoleonic code. The code forbade privileges based on birth, allowed freedom of religion, and specified that government jobs should go to the most qualified. The code declared presumption of innocence, competitive trial and right to an attorney. The code prohibited ...


4

One noble present at the Tennis Court Oath was the Marquis de Lafayette. He had been schooled in the American Revolution, and was about to embark on the French Revolution.


4

I found contradictory information on this. A biography of Lavoisier which only suggests that Fourcroy failed to step up in his defense when he most needed it. See: Jean Pierre Poirier Lavoisier: Chemist, Biologist, Economist On Google Books On p367 in the chapter "The Arrest" These interventions [on Lavoisier's behalf to counter the charges against ...


4

I understand that Blue and Red were taken for the national flag since these colors, being a symbol of Paris, had been used by the citizens during the storm of the Bastille In fact, this is likely to be a misunderstanding. As explained in the research of Michel Pastoureau, blue and red where not strongly associated with the colors of Paris at the onset ...


4

Wikipedia lists the total casualties from the Terror at a much more reasonable tens of thousands: The death toll ranged in the tens of thousands, with 16,594 executed by guillotine (2,639 in Paris),2 and another 25,000 in summary executions across France. The Terror only lasted 9 months after all. Update: While it is certain that a few ...


4

The Reign of Terror resulted in an estimated 40,000 executions, primarily landed nobility, courtiers and clergy. Many upper class French emigrated to other countries. A typical example is that of Pierre du Pont, founder of the chemical company E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company. Being a member of the lesser nobility, the revolution never got around to ...


3

The Sans-Culottes were laborers and peasants and those aligned with them who were in opposition to the aristocracy. Their appellation comes from their distinctive outfit - long cotton pants commonly worn by laborers, as opposed to the knee-breeches (culottes) favored by the wealthy and hangers-on (to show off their expensive hosiery and shoes). In addition ...


3

Napoleon abolished the revolutionary calendar in 1805. It was never very popular. Catholics disliked having their saints' days dropped, and having a day of rest every 10 days instead of every seven probably made it a tough sell. The Cult of the Supreme Being never caught on. Much of France's population remained Catholic during this time, and many of the ...


3

What differentiated the monarchies of France and its allies from other European monarchies was that the "monarchs" were "nouveaux riches," (nouveau empowered, actually) as opposed to "established" monarchs. As for their claims to being "revolutionary," these monarchies were "born" in the French Revolution, and paid "lip service" to "Liberte, Egalite, ...


3

In theory, the "credentials" were only important so far as to ensure the deputy had a legal right to be in the assembly. In practice, however, the "checking of credentials" was effectively an election, because the estates voted on them, kind of like the way the Senate votes on executive appointments in the United States. If the commoners and clergy were ...


2

Well, Napoleon's empire and his satellites were born out of the French Revolution and presumably in his first years in power as First Consul, before he became emperor, he might have well retained some of the revolutionary rhetoric. (Did he actually? It'd be a good technical follow-up question). However, once he became emperor, Napoleon didn't seem to have ...



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