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Category: History -> History of France -> Inventory #24349
The Threshold of Terror : The Last Hours of the Monarchy in the French Revolution
Allen, Rodney
Book Image
Publisher: Sutton Publishing
Place: Stroud, Gloucestershire
Year: 1999
Edition: Reprint
ISBN: 0750920300
Binding: Cloth
Size: 4to - over 9" - 12" tall
Book Condition: Fine
Jacket Condition: Fine
The French Revolution of 1789 did not set out to end the French monarchy. It aimed to create liberal constitutional government, with the king continuing to be responsible for national administration. This objective was believed to have been attained by the establishment of the Constitution of September 1791. However, radicals were not satisfied and France's declaration of war against Austria in April 1792 enhanced fears of counter-revolution led by aristocratic emigre forces based in Coblenz. Although the king tried to distance himself from the aristocratic faction, radical politicians agitated increasingly against the monarchy. On the fateful day of the 10th August 1792, Louis XVI was abandoned by the constitutionalists, and only the Swiss Guards, reacting autonomously to an impossible situation, made a real effort to protect him. The chain of events following the fall of the king led to the September Massacres and, for two years, a regime of growing political terror led to hundreds of thousands perishing as a result of the guillotine, mass executions and civil war. Of longer-term consequence was the undermining of political legitimacy in France which established a fertile ground for political upheaval, which may be argued to have continued as far as the student rebellion of 1968. The high drama of the crucial 24 hours in Paris from the afternoon of 9th August offers the unity of time and place of classical tragedy. The author describes in detail what happened, through a careful analysis of eye-witness accounts, official minutes of institutions and journalists' reports. The stories of how a number of witnesses escaped death and succeeded in leaving France give added human interest. 248pp.
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Price £ 12.50
($ 15.00 approx.)
(€ 13.25 approx.)
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