Reign Of Terror

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Reign of Terror


The Terror is a period of violence of the French Revolution which lasted from September 1793 to spring 1794 and has generated prompted much debate. According to some historians, the Terror was "characterized by brutal repression of the revolutionaries through the use of state terrorism", while for others, the Terror appears as a double-edged sword, at the same time claimed the lives of many innocent, but also killed many speculators and reactionary plots in Paris and other parts of France, which, for some, the Terror would be justified in part. This period took place under the aegis of the Committee of Public Safety, the executive body established in April 1793 to support and strengthen the action of the Committee of General Security which was from 1792.

Usually the term is generalized to two stages: the Red Terror, which was the Jacobins their instigators and executors, and immediately after the White Terror, developed during the reaction.

Development of Terror

The terror began on September 5 of 1793 when the Convention voted for terror measures to repress counterrevolutionary activities. The Terror lasted until the spring of 1794. Only in the month prior to final execution was 1300, but most of the latter were precisely of the Jacobins and their followers. The Committee of Public Safety was a collegial body of ten or twelve members, depending on the period, led by Maximilien Robespierre, who would read:

"Terror is only justice prompt, severe, inflexible."

The Committee was divided into sections: Robespierre, Georges Couthon and Saint-Just Louis were in charge of general policy, Lazare Carnot of the war, Claude-Antoine Prieur-Duvernois of arming, Robert Lindet of supply in food, Jean Bon Saint- André navy, Jean-Marie Collot d'Herbois and Jacques Nicolas Billaud-Varenne domestic policy. Barère of Vieuzac Bertrand was its spokesman to the National Assembly. The "Jacobin Terror" ended by winning the decisive Battle of Fleurus, which the army crushed Austria on June 26th of 1794. Leaving aside the possibility of an invasion thus reduced the justifications of an extremist regime. Although the victory of Fleurus was a factor in the fall of the Public Safety Committee, it must nevertheless to a combination of factors (Jordan, 150).

On the one hand the members of the Marsh, in line with the gentry, reproached the government to keep economic policy that had influenced the state of war, and advocated a return to a liberal economic policy. On the other hand, the General Safety Committee took a dim view of the preponderance of Public Safety Committee whose powers overlap with theirs. Finally, differences were decisive increasingly pronounced in the bosom of the Committee, Robespierre being increasingly isolated by his social policy. His desire to purge the Committee delayed its more extreme members, former and Collot d'Herbois Hebertists and Billaud-Varenne, precipitated its end. Several members of the Convention itself conspired against Robespierre and arrested him on July 27 (9 Thermidor), along with Saint-Just, Couthon, and several followers.

The guillotine of Robespierre and 28 of its partners on the following day marked the end of the ...
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