French Revoloution- Chapter 3

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The Rise of the Jacobins and Cordeliers

In the absence of the political parties the revoloutionairy clubs played a vital role in the revoloution. They kept the public informed on the major issues of the day and supported election candidates and acted as pressure groups to influence deputies into doing things which they were reluctant to accept.

For many people, without them they would have no idea about the course of the revoloution and important key events, they provided the people with a political education.

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The Jacobin Club

They set a high entrance fee for the entrance within the club, they regarded themselves as physiocrats and therefor they believed that the landowners should pay the bulk of the taxes.They rejcted the monarchy and belived that a republic should be created. They favoured centralisation and believed the provinces should have no power at all, Maximillian Robespierre was the leader of this club.

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The Cordelieur Club

They were much more radical then the Jacobin club and did not have a entrance fee therefore there members were greater in numbers. It objected the distinction between active and passive citizens and believed that:

  • Direct Democracy- in which voters could choose deputies.
  • The Right of insurrection
  • The recall of deputies for their actions

George Danton led the cordelieur club, also Marat was a leader within the club and became the most radical of all. He hated all those who enjoyed privallages under the old regime.

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The Flight to Varennes

Louis XVI was a devout catholic, and he deeply regretted his acceptance of the civil conistion of the clergy, which offended his conscience.

He therefore decided to flee from paris on the 20th june 1971, in which he would travel to the border of Luxembourg, and be under the protection of the military commander in charge of the area. He was spotted by the local postmaster and taken back to Paris in a deathly silence, before he left paris louis had written out a proclomation to the french people which set out in great detail his feelings regarding the development of the french revoloution.

This was a extremly signifcant, could he remain head of state?

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The Significance of The Flight to Varennes + The R

  • In the proclomation Louis showed that he had failed to understand the popularity of the changes which had taken place.
  • Louis in his proclomation had emphatically renounced the revoloution, could he remain head of state?
  • Support for the republic started to grow.

Results of the Flight to Varennes

King had lost all of what he had left of his populairty, people started to openly talk about destrying the monarchy and replacing it with a republic.

On the 16th July the assembly voted to suspend the king, this would favour the republicans.

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Division Among The Jacobins

After the flight to varennes, radicals were appalled that the King had not been put on trial or even de-throned, the Cordelieur club persuaded the jacobin club to join them to sign a petition against the King, this split the Jacobin club: one who wanted the king deposed and those who didnt.

This split created a new club: the Feuillants, who were consitional monarchists, this included Lafayette.

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The Champ De Mars Massacare

On 17th July 1791, 50,000 people flocked to the Champ De Mars a huge field in paris where 3 days ago a huge feast and celebration had taken place remembring the fall of the bastille. They gathered to sign a republican petition on the 'altar of the fatherland' this was a politcal demonstration and by the poorer sections of the paris community. They sent Lafayette with the National Guard to the Champ De Mars, martial law was placed on the citizens and therefore many were shot to death. This was the first bloody clash between the different groups within the 3rd estate. (

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Legilslative Assembly and Self Denying Ordanance

To prevent his poltical opponents from domintating the next assembly Robespierre created a "self denying ordanance", in which people who had been part of the old assembly could not be part of the new one.

In the semicicular meeting chamber the speaker now gave the labels infront of him- left, right and centre.

On the Left were the radicals republicans- JACOBINS AND GIRONDINS.

On the right were the conisitional monarchists- FEUILLANTS

In the centre were unattached people.

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Which textbook is this chapter 3 of?

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