The August Decrees and the declaration of the righ
The August Decrees (11th August 1789)
- caused by peasants revolt and great fear.
- 3rd of August- began to debate reform
- Decrees passed 11th August
- Decrees:- abolished feudal system, encouraged revolution, ended sale of offices, created equality in elligability for jobs, abbandoned some financial privilege, tithes abolished.
- BUT:- peasants had to buy their way out of feudalism by paying compensation
Declaration of the rights of man (paired with august decrees) (26th August 1789)
- Stated that:- all men are born equal with rights of liberty, property, security and resistance to oppression, every man is innocent until proven guilty, freedom of speech and general tax should be borne equal to means.
King's reaction and march of the women
- King could not use army as unreliable so stared policy of non-cooperation.
- Refused to accept august decrees or rights of man so deputies granted suspensive veto of upto 4yrs as they didnt want to end monarchy.
March of the Women (October Days) (5th October 1789)
- Large crowd gathered outside hotel de ville, mostly women
- demanded bread and king's approval of august decees and rights of man
- Followed by Lafayette and national guard to Versailles- invaded assembly
- Kings agreed to give food supplies and approve reforms
- Then demanded that king move to Paris- yeilded and went to Tuilerries
- Assembly also went back to Paris
- Assembly wanted to create church free from abuses, papal control, democratic and linked to new system of local government.
- 2nd November 1789- wealth of clergy sold to pay off national debt
- 12th July 1790- Civil constitution of the Clergy- reduction of clerical positions and clergy now elected rather than appointed by Pope- link cut. Clergy also had to reside in diocese and take oath to constitution.
- Clergy wanted church councils to discuss this but, while they waited for the Pope's verdict, the assembly became impatient and (November 1790) decreed they must take oath to constitution - split in juring and nonjuring priests.
Events in Paris
The Revolutionary Clubs and Popular Discontent
- Clubs began to form after first Estates-general
- Jacobin club- members came from richer classes due to entrance fee. Robespierre ran minority group of radicals.
- Cordeliers club- broke from Jacobins. More radical. Unrestricted access.
- Clubs important- they reported events to people and supported campaigns.
Flight to Varennes (Failed- bought back to Paris)
- 20/21st June- Louis fled- aimed to put himself with loyal troops or claim asylum with Austrian relatives- aimed for Lorraine.
- Hoped his removal from Paris would calm events but risked civil war.
- 16th July 1791- assembly suspended King until constitution was complete- would only be restored if he swore oath to it.
The Champs de Mars
The Champs de Mars (17th July 1791)
- Peaceful republican demonstration- "republican" marked new chapter
- Around 5000 were attacked by Lafayette and National Guard under Commune and Assembly orders- 50 killed
- Led to:- radical set back, new dedication to constitution but needed cooperation of King
Constitution of 1791
- limited monarchy- no power above law- real power to "Legislative Assembly"
- King forced to accept/swear oath- assembly believed this to be end of revolution
- Decreed:- new Legislative Assembly (LA) would pass laws and determine foreign policy, king allowed veto but not on financial or constitutional matters
F.Ford- Declaration of the Rights of Man symbolised the old regime was dead at its roots.
- Flight to Varennes doomed the constitutional monarchy before the constitution
D.Townson:- The October Days were a turning point in the revolution and showed the population was able to force will by another journée.
Murphy:- The Civil Constitution of the clergy had a lasting impact in dividing France.