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The French Revolution

ISBN: 978-0-88295-898-9
166 pages
December 1992, ©1993, Wiley-Blackwell
The French Revolution (0882958984) cover image
The Bastille, symbol of injustice and monarchial tyranny, surrendering to the Parisian throng; the hungry women of Paris, demanding bread from their king; the guillotine, revolutionary death machine, dispatching human lives amid the grotesquely gala atmosphere of the Place de la Revolution: Such dramatic images of a society in turmoil are vividly recreated in The French Revolution. Connelly and Hembree not only recapture the drama of the Revolution but provide a reasoned analysis of the causes, course, and legacy of this distinct turning point in history.
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Foreword v

Introduction ix

1. The Old Regime To 1789 1

The Great Surprise 1

The Origins of French Absolutism 2

Eighteenth-Century France 4

The Financial Crisis 21

The Revolt of the Nobles 24

Preparations for the Estates-Genera 25

2. 1789 28

The Estates-General 28

Paris Erupts 33

Municipal Revolutions and the Great Fear 39

The Declaration of the Rights of Man 43

The Legislature and the Veto 44

3. Government by the National Assembly 46

The October Days 46

The Political Clubs 49

Nationalization of Church Property 50

Civil Constitution of the Clergy 53

Administrative and Judicial Reform 56

The Flight to Varennes 57

Massacre of the Champ de Mars 61

The Constitution of 1791 63

The Radicalization of the Revolution 65

4. The Fall of the Monarchy 67

The Legislative Assembly 67

War 68

The Tuileries 71

The September Massacres 74

The Battle of Valmy 77

The Convention 78

The Trail and Execution of Louis XVI 81

The Fall of the Girondins 84

5. The Reign of Terror 86

The Terror 86

The Republican Calendar 88

The Organs of the Terror 89

The Vendée 97

The Federalist Revolts 99

The Nation at War 101

Other Accomplishments 103

De-Christianization 105

Hébertists and Dantonists 109

Cult of the Supreme Being 111

Thermidor 113

6. The Directory and the Rise of Napoleon Bonaparte 116

The Thermidorian Reaction 116

Military Victory in the Vendée 118

Paris, the Convention, and the Constitution of the Year III 120

Thermidorian Last Acts: The Cultural Legislation 125

The Directory (1795-1799) 125

Napoleon Bonaparte 127

Brumaire 136

Conclusion 139

Bibliographical Essay 143

Index 157

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