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French Revolution Essay

1387 words - 6 pages

Evaluate the radical change in French government between 1789 and 1793.
There was a radical change within the French government from 1789 to 1793, due to events related to the Reign of Terror. The overthrow of the monarchy and King Louis XVI played a crucial role in the historical lead up to the Reign of Terror. The fall of Bastille was also a pivotal event that contributed to the greater matter. The National Convention, the Committee of Public Safety, Maximilien de Robespierre and the 1793 constitution also demonstrated a clear movement of radical change within the French government.
The overthrow of the monarchy was a crucial point in the beginning of the Reign of Terror. The execution ...view middle of the document...

It also created an evidential point of the increasing power rise within France in the years between 1789 and 1793. On July the 14th, 1789 a mob of craftsman, salesman and civilians fought back. Bastille was the perfect target for this mob of angry men for its origins stood for the King. It represented and symbolized his absolute and arbitrary power, its dictatorial rule and it supplied them with weapons and reason. In the early eighties this prison was beginning to be used as a storing place for weapons and ammunition due to the fact, that there were few prisoners remaining. The day the prison was stormed there were only 7 prisoners left, in which the mob chose free.
Bastille housed approximately 28,000 riffles and 3,000 pounds of gun powder. Marquis Bernard-Rene de Laundy the governor of the invalids tried to negotiate with the angry mob to buy time for the backup which was organised to be on its way. This action was proved unsuccessful. The angered mob barged through and entered Bastille, de Laundy ordered his guards to fire. Eighty veterans were wounded and thirty grenadiers were wounded on the king’s side, as well as hundreds of civilians in the mob. The backup team that de Laundy called for eventually made its way to the crossfire but chose to fight with the mob instead of against. This left de Laundy betrayed. By 4pm de Laundy had surrendered. This resulted in him being stabbed and beheaded by knife. They staked his head and moved across the town announcing their victory and the power they had just obtained. That night under the orders of the commune a demolition crew began to demolish the Bastille prison. This signified to the mob and those against the King an uprise of power from the powerless. This was sparking the concerns and acts of the powerless taking power, control stripping and destroying all obstacles on their way to freedom. This significant event almost foreshadows what will become of France and their radical change in government in the next couple of years.
On April 6th 1793 the National Convention created the Committee of Public Safety in order to restore peace and order. Maximilien de Robespierre was the leader of Jacobin’s and towards the end of his life he gained majority control over the Committee of Public Safety and the National Convention. Robespierre was also majorly to blame for the beginning of the Reign of Terror in 1793. Under his reign and in the name of revolution about 15,000-50,000 were executed by the guillotine within the 15 months that the reign of terror exceeded. Robespierre was a very paranoid man by the end and killed many innocents without trial for either not being a strong believer in him and his ways or for speaking, acting or implying in any way that defies the revolution, or simply anyone that was counterrevolutionary.
The Committee proved to be quite weak in comparison to the internal and external wars occur throughout France, in the eastern countryside the Prussians and Austrian forces...

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