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The Origins of Contemporary France, Volume 3 (of 6) - The French Revolution, Volume 2 (of 3)
by Hippolyte A. Taine
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II.—Pressure on the King.

Petion and Manual brought to the Hotel-de-ville.—The Ministry obliged to resign.—Jacobin agitation against the King.—Pressure on the Assembly.—Petition of the Paris Commune.—Threats of the petitioners and of the galleries. —Session of August 8th.—Girondist strategy foiled in two ways.

With this in mind they begin by attacking the King, and try to make him yield through fear.—They remove the suspension pronounced against Petion and Manuel, and restore them both to their places in the Hotel-de-ville. They will from now on rule Paris without restriction or supervision; for the Directory of the department has resigned, and no superior authority exists to prevent them from calling upon or giving orders as they please to the armed forces; they are exempt from all subordination, as well as from all control. Behold the King of France in good hands, in those of the men who, on the 20th of June, refused to nuzzle the popular brute, declaring that it had done well, that it had right on its side, and that it may begin again. According to them, the palace of the monarch belongs to the public; people may enter it as they would a coffee-house; in any event, as the municipality is occupied with other matters, it cannot be expected to keep people out. "Is there nothing else to guard in Paris but the Tuileries and the King?"[2612]—Another maneuver consists in rendering the King's instruments powerless. Honorable and inoffensive as the new ministers may be, they never appear in the Assembly without being hooted at in the tribunes. Isnard, pointing with his finger to the principal one, exclaims: "That is a traitor!"[2613] Every popular outburst is imputed to them as a crime, while Guadet declares that, "as royal counselors, they are answerable for any disturbances" that the double veto might produce.[2614] Not only does the faction declare them guilty of the violence provoked by itself, but, again, it demands their lives for the murders which it commits. "France must know," says Vergniaud, "that hereafter ministers are to answer with their heads for any disorders of which religion is the pretext."—"The blood just spilt at Bordeaux," says Ducos, "may be laid at the door of the executive power. "[2615] La Source proposes to "punish with death," not alone the minister who is not prompt in ordering the execution of a decree, but, again, the clerks who do not fulfill the minister's instructions. Always death on every occasion, and for every one who is not of the sect. Under this constant terror, the ministers resign in a body, and the King is required at once to appoint others; meanwhile, to increase the danger of their position, the Assembly decrees that hereafter they shall "be answerable for each other." It is evident that they are aiming at the King over his minister's shoulders, while the Girondists leave nothing unturned to render government to him impossible. The King, again, signs this new decree; he declines to protest; to the persecution he is forced to undergo he opposes nothing but silence, sometimes a simple, frank, good-hearted expression,[2616] some kindly, touching complaining, which seems like a suppressed moan.[2617] But dogmatic obstinacy and impatient ambition are willfully deaf to the most sorrowful strains! His sincerity passes for a new false-hood. Vergniaud, Brissot, Torne, Condorcet, in the tribune, charge him with treachery, demand from the Assembly the right of suspending him,[2618] and give the signal to their Jacobin auxiliaries.—At the invitation of the parent club, the provincial branches bestir themselves, while all other instruments of agitation belonging to the revolutionary machine are likewise put in motion,—gatherings on the public squares, homicidal announcements on the walls, incendiary resolutions in the clubs, shouting in the tribunes, insulting addresses and seditious deputations at the bar of the National Assembly.[2619] After the working of this system for a month, the Girondists regard the King as subdued, and, on the 26th of July, Guadet, and then Brissot, in the tribune, make their last advances to him, and issue the final summons.[2620] A profound delusion! He refuses, the same as on the 20th of June: "Girondist ministers, Never!"

Since he bars one of the two doors, they will pass out at the other, and, if the Girondists cannot rule through him, they will rule without him. Petion, in the name of the Commune, appears personally and proposes a new plan, demanding the dethronement. "This important measure once passed,"[2621] he says, "the confidence of the nation in the actual dynasty being very doubtful, we demand that a body of ministers, jointly responsible, appointed by the National Assembly, but, as the constitutional law provides, outside of itself, elected by the open vote of freemen, be provisionally entrusted with the executive power." Through this open vote the suffrage will be easily controlled. This is but one more decree extorted, like so many others, the majority for a long time having been subject to the same pressure as the King. "If you refuse to respond to our wishes," as a placard of the 23rd of June had already informed them, "our hands are lifted, and we shall strike all traitors wherever they can be found, even amongst yourselves."[2622]—"Court favorites," says a petition of August 6, "have seats in your midst. Let their inviolability perish if the national will must always tamely submit to that lethal power!"—In the Assembly the yells from the galleries are frightful; the voices of those who speak against dethronement are overpowered; so great are the hooting, the speakers are driven out of the tribune.[2623] Sometimes the "Right" abandons the discussion and leaves the chamber. The insolence of the galleries goes so far that frequently almost the entire Assembly murmurs while they applaud; the majority, in short, loudly expresses anger at its bondage.[2624]—Let it be careful! In the tribunes and at the approaches to the edifice, stand the Federates, men who have a tight grip. They will force it to vote the decisive measure, the accusation of Lafayette, the decree under which the armed champion of the King and the Constitution must fall. The Girondists, to make sure of it, exact a call of the house; in this way the names are announced and printed, thus designating to the populace the opponents of the measure, so that none of them are sure of getting to their homes safe and sound.—Lafayette, however, a liberal, a democrat, and a royalist, as devoted to the Revolution as to the Law, is just the man, who, through his limited mental grasp, his disconnected political conceptions, and the nobleness of his contradictory sentiments, best represents the present opinion of the Assembly, as well as that of France.[2625] Moreover, his popularity, his courage, and his army are the last refuge. The majority feels that in giving him up they themselves are given up, and, by a vote of 400 to 224, it acquits him.—On this side, again, the strategy of the Girondists is found erroneous. Power slips away from them the second time. Neither the King nor the Assembly have consented to restore it to them, while they can no longer leave it suspended in the air, or defer it until a better opportunity, and keep their Jacobin acolytes waiting. The feeble leash restraining the revolutionary dog breaks in their hands; the dog is free and in the street



III.—The Girondins have worked for the benefit of the Jacobins.

The armed force sent away or disorganized.—The Federates summoned.—Brest and Marseilles send men.—Public sessions of administrative bodies.—Permanence of administrative bodies and of the sections.——Effect of these two measures.—The central bureau of the Hotel-de-ville.—Origin and formation of the revolutionary Commune.

Never was better work done for another. Every measure relied on by them for getting power back, serves only to place it in the hands of the mob.—On the one hand, through a series of legislative acts and municipal ordinances, they have set aside or disbanded the army, alone capable of repressing or intimidating it. On the 29th of May they dismissed the king's guard. On the 15th of July they ordered away from Paris all regular troops. On the 16th of July,[2626] they select "for the formation of a body of infantry-gendarmerie, the former French-guardsmen who served in the Revolution about the epoch of the 1st day of June, 1789, the officers, under-officers, gunners, and soldiers who gathered around the flag of liberty after the 12th of July of that year," that is to say, a body of recognized insurgents and deserters. On the 6th of July, in all towns of 50,000 souls and over, they strike down the National Guard by discharging its staff, "an aristocratic corporation," says a petition,[2627] "a sort of modern feudality composed of traitors, who seem to have formed a plan for directing public opinion as they please." Early in August,[2628] they strike into the heart of the National Guard by suppressing special companies, grenadiers, and chasseurs, recruited amongst well-to-do-people, the genuine elite, stripped of its uniform, reduced to equality, lost in the mass, and now, moreover, finding its 'ranks degraded by a mixture of interlopers, federates, and men armed with pikes. Finally, to complete the pell-mell, they order that the palace guard be hereafter composed daily of citizens taken from the sixty battalions,[2629] so that the chiefs may no longer know their men nor the men their chiefs; so that no one may place confidence in his chief, in his subordinate, in his neighbor, or in himself; so that all the stones of the human dike may be loosened beforehand, and the barrier crumble at the first onslaught.—On the other hand, they have taken care to provide the insurrection with a fighting army and an advanced guard. By another series of legislative acts and municipal ordinances, they authorize the assemblage of the Federates at Paris; they allow them pay and military lodgings;[2630] they allow them to organize under a central committee sitting at the Jacobin club, and to take their instructions from that club. Of these new-comers, two-thirds, genuine soldiers and true patriots, set out for the camp at Soissons and for the frontier; one-third of them, however, remain at Paris,[2631] perhaps 2,000, the rioters and politicians, who, feasted, entertained, indoctrinated, and each lodged with a Jacobin, become more Jacobin than their hosts, and incorporate themselves with the revolutionary battalions, so as to serve the good cause with their guns.[2632]—Two squads, late comers, remain separate, and are only the more formidable; both are dispatched by the towns on the sea-cost in which, four months before this, "twenty-one capital acts of insurrection had occurred, all unpunished, and several under sentence of the maritime jury."[2633] The first, numbering 300 men, comes from Brest,

* where the municipality, as infatuated as those of Marseilles and Avignon, engages in armed expeditions against its neighbors; where popular murder is tolerated;

* where M. de la Jaille is nearly killed;

* where the head of M. de la Patry is borne on a pike;

* where veteran rioters compose the crews of the fleet,

* where "workers paid by the State, clerks, masters, non-commission officers, converted into agitators, political stump-speakers, movers, and critics of the administration," ask only to be given roles to perform on a more conspicuous stage.

The second troop, summoned from Marseilles by the Girondins, Rebecqui, and Barbaroux,[2634] comprises 516 men, intrepid, ferocious adventurers, from everywhere, either Marseilles or abroad, Savoyards, Italians, Spaniards, driven out of their country, almost all of the vilest class, or gaining a livelihood by infamous pursuits, "hit-men and their henchmen of evil haunts," used to blood, quick to strike, good cut-throats, picked men out of the bands that had marched on Aix, Arles, and Avignon, the froth of that froth which, for three years, in the Comtat and in the Bouches-du-Rhone, boiled over the useless barriers of the law.—The very day they reach Paris they show what they can do.[2635] Welcomed with great pomp by the Jacobins and by Santerre, they are conducted, for a purpose, to the Champs-Elysees, into a tavern, near the restaurant in which the grenadiers of the Filles St. Thomas, bankers, brokers, leading men, well-known for their attachment to a monarchical constitution, were dining in a body, as announced several days in advance. The mob which had formed a convoy for the Marseilles battalion, gathers before the restaurant, shouts, throws mud, and then lets fly a volley of stones; the grenadiers draw their sabers. Forthwith a shout is heard just in front of them, a nous les Marseillais! upon which the gang jump out of the windows with true southern agility, clamber across the ditches, fall upon the grenadiers with their swords, kill one and wound fifteen.—No debut could be more brilliant. The party at last possesses men of action;[2636] and they must be kept within reach! Men who do such good work, and so expeditiously, must be well posted near the Tuileries. The mayor, consequently, on the night of the 8th of August, without informing the commanding general, solely on his own authority, orders them to leave their barracks in the Rue Blanche and take up their quarters, with their arms and cannon, in the barracks belonging to the Cordeliers.[2637]

Such is the military force in the hands of the Jacobin masses; nothing remains but to place the civil power in their hands also, and, as the first gift of this kind was made to them by the Girondins, they will not fail to make them the second one.—On the 1st of July, they decree that the sessions of administrative bodies should thenceforth be public; this is submitting municipalities, district, and department councils, as well as the National Assembly itself, to the clamor, the outrages, the menaces, the rule of their audiences, which in these bodies as in the National Assembly, will always be Jacobin.[2638] On the 11th of July, on declaring the country in danger,[2639] they render the sessions permanent, first of the administrative bodies, and next of the forty-eight sections of Paris, which is a surrender of the administrative bodies and the forty-eight sections of Paris to the Jacobin minority, which minority, through its zeal and being ever present, knows how to convert itself into a majority.—Let us trace the consequences of this, and see the selection which is thus effected by the double decree. Those who attend these meetings, day and night, are not the steady, busy people. In the first place, they are too busy in their own counting-rooms, shops and factories to lose so much time. In the next place, they are too sensible, to docile, and too honest to go and lord it over their magistrates in the Hotel-de-ville, or regard themselves in their various sections as the sovereign people. Moreover, they are disgusted with all this bawling. Lastly, the streets of Paris, especially at night, are not safe; owing to so much outdoor politics, there is a great increase of caning and of knocking down. Accordingly, for a long time, they do not attend at the clubs, nor are they seen in the galleries of the National Assembly; nor will they be seen again at the sessions of the municipality, nor at the meetings of the sections.—Nothing, on the other hand, is more attractive to the idle tipplers of the cafes, to bar-room oracles, loungers, and talkers, living in furnished rooms,[2640] to the parasites and refractory of the social army, to all who have left the social structures and unable to get back again, who want to tear things to pieces, and, for lack of a private career, establish one for themselves in public. Permanent sessions, even at night, are not too long either for them, or for lazy Federates, for disordered intellects, and for the small troop of genuine fanatics. Here they are either performers or claqueurs, an uproar not being offensive to them, because they create it. They relieve each other, so as to be always on hand in sufficient number, or compensate for a deficiency by usurpations and brutality. The section of the Theatre-Francais, for instance, in contempt of the law, removes the distinction between active and passive citizens, by granting to all residents in its circumscription the right to be present at its meetings and the right to vote. Other sections[2641] admit to their sittings all well-disposed spectators, all women, children, and the nomads, all agitators, and the agitated, who, as at the National Assembly, applaud or hoot at the word of command. In the sections not disposed to be at the mercy of an anonymous public, the same herd of frantic characters make a racket at the doors, and insult the electors who pass through them.—Thanks to this itinerant throng of co-operating intruders, the Jacobin extremists rule the sections the same as the Assembly; in the sections as in the Assembly, they drive away or silence the moderates, and when the hall becomes half empty or dumb, their motion is passed. Hawked about in the vicinity, the motion is even carried off; in a few days it makes the tour of Paris, and returns to the Assembly as an authentic and unanimous expression of popular will.[2642]

At present, to ensure the execution of this counterfeit will, it requires a central committee, and through a masterpiece of delusion, Petion, the Girondist mayor, is the one who undertakes to lodge, sanction, and organize the committee. On the 17th day of July,[2643] he establishes in the offices belonging to the Commune, "a central bureau of correspondence between the sections." To this a duly elected commissioner is to bring the acts passed by his section each day, and carry away the corresponding acts of the remaining forty-seven sections. Naturally, these elected commissioners will hold meetings of their own, appointing a president and secretary, and making official reports of their proceedings in the same form as a veritable municipal council. As they are elected to-day, and with a special mandate, it is natural that they should consider themselves more legitimate than a municipal council elected four or five months before them, and with a very uncertain mandate. Installed in the town hall of Paris (Hotel-de-ville), only two steps from the municipal council, it is natural for them to attempt to take its place; to substitute themselves for it, they have only to cross over to the other side of a corridor.



IV.—Vain attempts of the Girondins to put it down.

Jacobin alarm, their enthusiasm, and their program.

Thus, hatched by the Girondins, does the terrible Commune of Paris come into being, that of August 10th, September 2nd 1792 and May 31st. 1793. The viper has hardly left its nest before it begins to hiss. A fortnight before the 10th of August[2644] it begins to uncoil, and the wise statesmen who have so diligently sheltered and fed it, stand aghast at its hideous, flattened head. Accordingly, they back away from it up to the last hour, and strive to prevent it from biting them. Petion himself visits Robespierre on the 7th of August, in order to represent to him the perils of an insurrection, and to allow the Assembly time enough to discuss the question of dethronement. The same day Verginaud and Guadet propose to the King, through the medium of Thierry, his valet-de-chambre, that, until peace is assured, the government be carried on under a regency. Petion, on the night of August 9-10, issues a pressing circular to the sections, urging them to remain tranquil.[2645]

But it is too late. Fifty days of excitement and alarm have worked up the aberrations of morbid imaginations into a delirium.—On the second of August, a crowd of men and women rush to the bar of the Assembly, exclaiming, "Vengeance! Vengeance! our brethren are being poisoned!"[2646] The fact as ascertained is this: at Soissons, where the bread of the soldiery was prepared in a church, some fragments of broken glass were found in the oven, on the strength of which a rumor was started that 170 volunteers had died, and that 700 were lying in the hospital. A ferocious instinct makes men see their adversaries in their own image and thus justify them to take those measures which they imagine their enemies would have taken in their place.[2647]—The committee of Jacobin leaders states positively that the Court is about to attack, and, accordingly, has devised "not merely signs of this, but of the most unmistakable proof."[2648]—"It is the Trojan horse," exclaimed Panis; "We are lost if we do not succeed in disemboweling it.... The bomb explodes on the night of August 9-10... Fifteen thousand aristocrats stand ready to slaughter all patriots." Patriots, consequently, attribute to themselves the right to slaughter aristocrats.—Late in June, in the Minimes section, "a French guardsman had already determined to kill the King," if the King persisted in his veto. When the president of the section wanted to expulse the regicide, it was the latter who was retained and the president was expelled.[2649] On the 14th of July, the day of the Federation festival, another predecessor of Louvel and Fieschi, provided with a cutlass, had introduced himself into the battalion on duty at the palace, for the same purpose; during the ceremony the crowd warmed up, and, for a moment, the King owed his life to the firmness of his escort. On the 27th of July, in the garden of the Tuileries, d'Espremenil, the old Constituent[2650], beaten, slashed, and his clothes torn, pursued like a stag across the Palais Royal, falls bleedings on a mattress at the gates of the Treasury.[2651] On the 29th of July, whilst one of Lafayette's aides, M. Bureau de Pusy, is at the bar of the house, "they try to have a motion passed in the Palais Royal to parade his head on the end of a pike."[2652]—At this level of rage and fear, the brutal and the excited can wait no longer. On the 4th of August,[2653] the Mauconseil section declares "to the Assembly, to the municipality, and to all the citizens of Paris, that it no longer recognizes Louis XVI. as King of the French". Its president, the foreman of a tailor's shop, and its secretary, employed in the leather market, support their manifesto with three lines of a tragedy floating vaguely in their minds,[2654] and name the Boulevard Madeleine St. Honore as a rendezvous on the following Sunday for all well-disposed persons. On the 6th of August, Varlet, a post-office clerk, makes known to the Assembly, in the name of the petitioners of the Champ de Mars, the program of the faction:

1. the dethronement of the King,

2. the indictment, arrest, and speedy condemnation of Lafayette,

3. the immediate convoking of the primary assemblies,

4. universal suffrage,

5. the discharge of all staff officers,

6. the renewal of the departmental directories,

7. the recall of all ambassadors,

8. the suppression of diplomacy,

9. and a return to the state of nature.

The Girondins may now delay, negotiate, beat about and argue as much as they please; their hesitation has no other effect that to consign them into the background, as being lukewarm and timid. Thanks to them, the (Jacobin) faction now has its deliberative assemblies, its executive powers, its central seat of government, its enlarged, tried, and ready army, and, forcibly or otherwise, its program will be carried out.



V.—Evening of August 8.

Session of August 9.—Morning of August 10.—Assembly purged.

The Assembly must first of all be made to depose the King. Several times already,[2655] on the 26th of July and August 4, clandestine meetings had been held where strangers decided the fate of France, and gave the signal for insurrection.—Restrained with great difficulty, they consented "to have patience until August 9, at 11 o'clock in the evening."[2656] On that day the discussion of the dethronement is to take place in the Assembly, and calculations are made on a favorable vote under such a positive threat; its reluctance must yield to the certainty of a military occupation—On the 8th of August, however, the Assembly refuses, by a majority of two-thirds, to indict the great enemy, Lafayette. The double amputation essential for State security, must therefore begin with the destruction of this majority.

The moment Lafayette's acquittal is announced, the galleries, usually so vociferous, maintain "gloomy silence."[2657] The word of command for them is to keep themselves in reserve for the streets. One by one the deputies who voted for Lafayette are pointed out to the mob at the doors, and a shout is raised, "the rascals, the knaves, the traitors living on the civil list! Hang them! Kill them! Put an end to them! Mud, mortar, plaster, stones are thrown at them, and they are severely pummeled. M. Mezieres, in the Rue du Dauphin, is seized by the throat, and a woman strikes at him, which he parries. In the Rue St. Honore, a number of men in red caps surround M. Regnault-Beauceron, and decide to "string him up at the lantern"; a man in his jacket had already grabbed him from behind and raised him up, when the grenadiers of Sainte-Opportune arrive in time to set him free. In the Rue St. Louis, M. Deuzy, repeatedly struck on the back with stones, has a saber twice raised over his head. In the Passage des Feuillants, M. Desbois is pummeled, and a "snuff-box, his pocket-book, and cane" are stolen from him. In the lobbies of the Assembly, M. Girardin is on the point of being assassinated.[2658] Eight deputies besides these are pursued, and take refuge in the guard-room of the Palais Royal. A Federate enters along with them, and "there, his eyes sparkling with rage and thumping on the table like a madman," he exclaims to M. Dumolard, who is the best known:" "If you are unlucky enough to put your feet in the Assembly again, I'll cut off your head with my sword!" As to the principal defender of Lafayette, M. Vaublanc, he is assailed three times, but he is wary enough not to return home; a number of infuriates, however, invest his house, yelling out that "eighty citizens are to perish by their hands, and he is one of the first"; a dozen of the gang ascend to his apartments, rummage them in every corner, make another effort to find him in the adjoining houses, and, not being able to secure him, try to find his family; he is notified that, if he returns to his house, he will be massacred.—In the evening, on the Feuillants terrace, other deputies are subjected to the same outrages; the gendarmerie tries in vain to protect them, while the 'commandant of the National Guard, on leaving his post, is attacked and cut down."[2659]—Meanwhile, some of the Jacobins in the lobbies "doom the majority of the Assembly to destruction"; one orator declares that "the people have a right to form lists of proscription," and the club accordingly decides on printing and publishing the names of all the deputies who acquitted Lafayette.—Never was physical constraint displayed and applied with such open shamelessness.[2660]

On the following day, August 9, armed men gather around the approaches to the Assembly, and sabers are seen even in the corridors.[2661] The galleries, more imperious than ever, cheer, and break out in ironic shouts of triumph and approval every time the attacks of the previous evening are denounced in the tribune. The president calls the offenders to order more than twenty times, but his voice and his bell are drowned in the uproar. It is impossible to express an opinion. Most of the representatives who were maltreated the evening before, write that they will not return, while others, who are present, declare that they will not vote again "if they cannot be secure of freedom of conscience in their deliberations." At this utterance, which expresses the secret sentiment of "nearly the whole of the Assembly,"[2662] "all the members of the 'Right', and many of the 'Left' arise simultaneously and exclaim: 'Yes, yes; we will debate no longer unless we are free!"—As usual, however, the majority gives away the moment effective measures are to be adopted; its heart sinks, as it always has done, on being called upon to act in self-defense, while these official declarations, one on top of the other, in hiding from it the gravity of the danger, sink it deeper in its own timidity. At this same session the syndic-attorney of the department reports that the mob is ready, that 900 armed men had just entered Paris, that the tocsin would be rung at midnight, and that the municipality tolerates or favors the insurrection. At this same session, the Minister of Justice gives notice that "the laws are powerless," and that the government is no longer responsible. At this same session, Petion, the mayor, almost avowing his complicity, appears at the bar of the house, and declares positively that he will have nothing to do with the public forces, because "it would be arming one body of citizens against another."[2663]—Every support is evidently knocked away. Feeling that it is abandoned, the National Assembly gives up, and, as a last expedient, and with a degree of weakness or simplicity which admirably depicts the legislators of the epoch, it adopts a philosophic address to the people, "instructing it what to do in the exercise of its sovereignty."

How this is done, it may see the next morning. At 7 o'clock, a Jacobin deputy stops in a cab before the door of the Feuillants club; a crowd gathers around him, and he gives his name, Delmas. The crowd understood it as Dumas, a well-known Constitutionalist, and, in a rage, drag him out of the vehicle and knock him down; had not other deputies run up and given assurances that he was the patriot Delmas, of Toulouse, instead of "the traitor, Mathieu Dumas," he was a lost man.[2664] Dumas makes no effort to enter. He finds on the Place Vendome a second and not less instructive warning. Some wretches, followed by the usual rabble, carry about a number of heads on pikes, those probably of the journalist Suleau, and three others, massacred a quarter of an hour before; "boys quite young, mere children, play with these heads by tossing them in the air, and catching them on the ends of their sticks."—There is no doubt but that the deputies of the "Right" and even the "Center," would do well to go home and stay there. In fact, they are no longer seen in the Assembly.[2665] In the afternoon, out of the 630 members still present the evening before, 346 do not answer the call, while about thirty others, had either withdrawn before this or sent in their resignations.[2666] The purging is complete, like that to which Cromwell, in 1648, subjected the Long Parliament. Henceforth the Legislative body, reduced to 224 Jacobins or Girondins, with 60 frightened or tractable neutrals, will obey the orders of the street without any difficulty. A change has come over the spirit of the body as well as over its composition; it is nothing more now than a servile instrument in the hands of the seditious, who have mutilated it, and who, masters of it through a first misdeed, are going to use it to legalize other crimes.



VI.—Nights of August 9 and 10.

The sections.—Commissioners of the sections at the Hotel- de-ville.—The revolutionary Commune is substituted for the legal Commune.

During the night of the 9th and 10th of August their government forms itself for action, it has been set up as it will behave, with violence and fraud.—In vain have they annoyed and worked on the sections for the past fortnight; they are not yet submissive, only six out of forty-eight at the present hour, eleven o'clock at night, being found sufficiently excited or purged to send their commissioners forthwith, with full power, to the Hotel-de-ville. The others will follow, but the majority rests inert or recalcitrant.[2667]—It is necessary, therefore, to deceive or force this majority, and, to this end, darkness, the late hour, disorder, dread of the coming day, and the uncertainty of what to do, are precious auxiliaries. In many of the sections,[2668] the meetings are already adjourned or deserted; only a few members of the permanent bureau in the room, with a few men, perhaps asleep, on the nearly empty benches. An emissary arrives from the insurgent sections, along with a company of trusty fellows belonging to the quarter, and cries out, Save the country! The sleepers open their eyes, stretch themselves, raise their hands, and elect whoever is designated, sometimes strangers and other unknown individuals, who will be disowned the coming day at a full meeting of the section. There is no official report drawn up, no balloting, the course pursued being the most prompt. At the Arsenal section, six electors present choose three among their own number to represent 1,400 active citizens. Elsewhere, a throng of shrews, night-brawlers and dishonorable persons, invade the premises, chase out the believers in law and order, and win all the desired appointments.[2669] Other sections consent to elect, but without consenting to give power of attorney. Several make express reservations, stipulating that their delegates shall act in concert with the legal municipality, distrusting the future committee, and declaring in advance that they will not obey it. A few elect their commissioners only to obtain information, and, at the same time, to show that they intend earnestly to stop all rioting.[2670] Finally, at least twenty sections abstain from or disapprove of the proceedings and send no delegates.—Never mind, they can be dispensed with. At three o'clock in the morning, 19 sections, and, at seven o'clock, 24 or 25,[2671] are represented one way or another at the Town-hall (Hotel-de-ville), and this representation forms a central committee. Anyhow, there is nothing to prevent seventy or eighty subordinate intriguers and desperadoes, who have slipped in or pushed through, from calling themselves authorized delegates and ministers plenipotentiary of the entire Paris population,[2672] and to operate accordingly.—Scarcely are they installed under the presidency of Huguenin, with Tallien as secretary, when they issue a summons for "twenty-five armed men from each section," five hundred strapping lads, to act as guards and serve as an executive force.—Against a band of this description the municipal council, in session in the opposite chamber, is feeble enough. Moreover, the most moderate and firmest of its members, sent away on purpose, are on missions to the Assembly, at the palace, and in different quarters of Paris, while its galleries are crammed with villainous looking men, posted there to create an uproar, its deliberations being carried on under menaces of death.—That's why, as the night passes, the equilibrium between the two assemblages, one legal the other illegal, facing each other like the two sides of a scale, disappears. Lassitude, fear, discouragement, desertion, increase on one side, while numbers, audacity, force and usurpation increase on the other. At length, the latter wrests from the former all the acts it needs to start the insurrection and render defense impossible. About six o'clock in the morning the intruding committee, in the name of the people, ends the matter by suspending the legitimate council, which it then expels, and takes possession of its chairs.

The first act of the new sovereign rulers indicates at once what they mean to do. M. de Mandat, in command of the National guard, summoned to the Hotel-de-ville, had come to explain to the council what disposition he had made of his troops, and what orders he had issued. They seize him, interrogate him in their turn,[2673] depose him, appoint Santerre in his place, and, to derive all the benefit they can from his capture, they order him to withdraw one-half of his men stationed around the palace. Fully aware of what he was exposed to in this den of thieves, he nobly refuses; forthwith they consign him to prison, and send him to the Abbaye "for his greater safety." At these significant words from Danton,[2674] he is murdered at the door as he leaves by Rossignol, one of Danton's acolytes, with a pistol-shot at arm's length.—After tragedy comes comedy. At the repeated entreaties of Petion, who does not want to be requisitioned against the rioters,[2675] they send him a guard of 400 men, thus confining him in his own house, and, apparently in spite of himself.

On one side, sheltered by treachery and, on the other side, by assassination, the insurrection may now go on in full security in front of the terrible hypocrite who solemnly complains of his voluntary captivity, and before the corpse, with shattered brow, lying on the steps of the Hotel-de-ville. On the right bank of the river, the battalions of the Faubourg Saint-Antoine, and, on the left, those of the Faubourg Saint-Marcel, the Bretons, and the Marseilles band, march forth as freely as if going to parade. Measures of defense are frustrated by the murder of the commanding general, and by the mayor's duplicity; there is not resistance on guarded spots, at the arcade Saint-Jean, the passages of the bridges, along the quays, and in the court of the Louvre. An advance guard of the mob, women, children, and men, armed with cutters, cudgels, and pikes, spread over the abandoned Carrousel, and, towards eight o'clock, the advance column, led by Westerman, appears in front of the palace.



VII.—August 10.

The King's forces.—Resistance abandoned.—The King in the National Assembly.—Conflict at the palace and discharge of the Swiss Guard.—The palace evacuated by the King's order. —The massacres.—The enslaved Assembly and its decrees.

If the King had wanted to fight, he might still have defended himself, saved himself, and even been victorious.[2676]—In the Tuileries, 950 of the Swiss Guard and 200 gentlemen stood ready to die for him to the last man. Around the Tuileries, two or three thousand National Guard, the elite of the Parisian population, had just cheered him as he passed.[2677] "Hurrah for the King! Hurrah for Louis XVI.! He is our King and we want no other; we want him only! Down with the rioters! Down with the Jacobins! We will defend him unto death! Let him put himself at our head! Hurrah for the Nation, the Law, the Constitution, and the King, which are all one! If the gunners were silent, and seemed ill-disposed,[2678] it was simply necessary to disarm them suddenly, and hand over their pieces to loyal men. Four thousand rifles and eleven pieces of artillery, protected by the walls of the courts and by the thick masonry of the palace, were certainly sufficient against the nine or ten thousand Jacobins in Paris, most of them pikemen, badly led by improvised or rebellious battalion officers,[2679] and, still worse, commanded by their new general, Santerre, who, always cautious, kept himself aloof in the Hotel-de-ville, out of harm's way. The only staunch men in the Carrousel were the eight hundred men from Brest and Marseilles; the rest consisted of a rabble like that of July 14, October 5, and June 20;[2680] the palace, says Napoleon Bonaparte, was attacked by the vilest canaille, professional rioters, Maillard's band, and the bands of Lazowski, Fournier, and Theroigne, by all the assassins, indeed of the previous night and day, and of the following day, which species of combatants, as was proved by the event, would have scattered at the first discharge of a cannon.—But, with the governing as with the governed, all notion of the State was lost, the former through humanity become a duty, and the latter through insubordination erected into a right. At the close of the eighteenth century, in the upper as well as in the middle class, there was a horror of blood;[2681] refined social ways, coupled with an idyllic imagination, had softened the militant disposition. Everywhere the magistrates had forgotten that the maintenance of society and of civilization is a benefit of infinitely greater importance than the lives of a parcel of maniacs and malefactors; that the prime object of government, as well as of a police, is the preservation of order by force; that a gendarme is not a philanthropist; that, if attacked on his post, he must use his sword, and that, in sheathing it for fear of wounding his aggressors, he fails to do his duty.

This time again, in the court of the Carrousel, the magistrates on the spot, finding that "their responsibility is insupportable," concern themselves only with how to "avoid the effusion of blood;" it is with regret, and this they state to the troops, "in faltering tones," that they proclaim martial law.[2682] They "forbid them to attack," merely "authorizing them to repel force with force;" in other words, they order them to stand up to the first fire; "you are not to fire until you are fired upon."—Still better, they go from company to company, "openly declaring that opposition to such a large and well-armed assemblage would be folly, and that it would be a very great misfortune to attempt it."—"I repeat to you," said Leroux, "that a defense seems to me madness."—Such is the way in which, for more than an hour, they encourage the National Guard. "All I ask," says Leroux again, "is that you wait a little longer. I hope that we shall induce the King to yield to the National Assembly."—Always the same tactics: hand the fortress and the general over rather than fire on the mob. To this end they return to the King, with Roederer at their head, and renew their efforts: "Sire," says Roederer, "time presses, and we ask you to consent to accompany us."—For a few moments, the last and most solemn of the monarchy, the King hesitates.[2683] His good sense, probably, enabled him to see that a retreat was abdication; but his phlegmatic understanding is at first unable to clearly define its consequences; moreover, his optimism had never explored the vastness of the stupidity of the people, nor sounded the depths of human malice and spite; he cannot imagine that slander may transform his determination not to shed blood into a desire to shed blood.[2684] Besides, he is bound by his past, by his habit of always yielding; by his determination, declared and maintained for the past three years, never to cause civil war; by his obstinate humanitarianism, and especially by his religious goodwill. He has systematically extinguished in himself the animal instinct of resistance, the flash of anger in all of us which starts up under unjust and brutal aggressions; the Christian has supplanted the King; he is no longer aware that duty obliges him to be a man of the sword that, in his surrender, he surrenders the State, and that to yield like a lamb is to lead all honest people, along with himself, to the slaughterhouse. "Let us go," said he, raising his right hand; "we will give, since it is necessary, one more proof of our self-sacrifice."[2685] Accompanied by his family and Ministers, he sets out between two lines of National Guards and the Swiss Guard,[2686] and reaches the Assembly, which sends a deputation to meet him; entering the chamber he says: "I come here to prevent a great crime. "—No pretext, indeed, for a conflict now exists. An assault on the insurgent side is useless, since the monarch, with all belonging to him and his government, have left the palace. On the other side, the garrison will not begin the fight; diminished by 150 Swiss and nearly all the grenadiers of the Filles-Saint-Thomas, who served as the King's escort to the Assembly, it is reduced to a few gentlemen, 750 Swiss, and about a hundred National Guards; the others, on learning that the King is going, consider their services at an end and disperse.[2687]—All seems to be over in the sacrifice of royalty. Louis XVI. imagines that the Assembly, at the worst, will suspend him from his functions, and that he will return to the Tuileries as a private individual. On leaving the palace, indeed, he orders his valet to keep up the service until he himself returns from the National Assembly.[2688]

He did not count on the exigencies, blindness and disorders of the riot. Threatened by the Jacobin gunners remaining with their artillery in the inside courts, the gatekeepers open the gates. The insurgents rush in, fraternise with the gunners, reach the vestibule, ascend the grand staircase, and summon the Swiss to surrender.[2689]—These show no hostile spirit; many of them, as a mark of good humor, throw packets of cartridges out of the windows; some even go so far as to let themselves be embraced and led away. The regiment, however, faithful to its orders, will not yield to force.[2690] "We are Swiss," replies the sergeant, Blaser; "the Swiss do not part with their arms but with their lives. We think that we do not merit such an insult. If the regiment is no longer wanted, let it be legally discharged. But we will not leave our post, nor will we let our arms be taken from us." The two bodies of troops remain facing each other on the staircase for three-quarters of an hour, almost intermingled, one silent and the other excited, turbulent, and active, with all the ardor and lack of discipline peculiar to a popular gathering, each insurgent striving apart, and in his own way, to corrupt, intimidate, or constrain the Swiss Guards. Granier, of Marseilles, at the head of the staircase, holds two of them at arms' length, trying in a friendly manner to draw them down.[2691] At the foot of the staircase the crowd is shouting and threatening; lighter men, armed with boat-hooks, harpoon the sentinels by their shoulder-straps, and pull down four or five, like so many fishes, amid shouts of laughter.—Just at this moment a pistol goes off; nobody being able to tell which party fired it.[2692] The Swiss, firing from above, clean out the vestibule and the courts, rush down into the square and seize the cannon; the insurgents scatter and fly out of range. The bravest, nevertheless, rally behind the entrances of the houses on the Carrousel, throw cartridges into the courts of the small buildings and set them on fire. During another half-hour, under the dense smoke of the first discharge and of the burning buildings, both sides fire haphazard, while the Swiss, far from giving way, have scarcely lost a few men, when a messenger from the King arrives, M. d'Hervilly, who orders in his name the firing to cease, and the men to return to their barracks.

Slowly and regularly they form in line and retire along the broad alley of the garden. At the sight of these foreigners, however, in red coats, who had just fired on Frenchmen, the guns of the battalion stationed on the terraces go off of their own accord, and the Swiss column divides in two. One body of 250 men turns to the right, reaches the Assembly, lays down its arms at the King's order, and allows itself to be shut up in the Feuillants church. The others are annihilated on crossing the garden, or cut down on the Place Louis XV. by the mounted gendarmerie. No quarter is given. The warfare is that of a mob, not civilized war, but primitive war, that of barbarians. In the abandoned palace into which the insurgents entered five minutes after the departure of the garrison,[2693] they kill the wounded, the two Swiss surgeons attending to them,[2694] the Swiss who had not fired a gun, and who, in the balcony on the side of the garden, "cast off their cartridge-boxes, sabers, coats, and hats, and shout: 'Friends, we are with you, we are Frenchmen, we belong to the nation!'"[2695] They kill the Swiss, armed or unarmed, who remain at their posts in the apartments. They kill the Swiss gate-keepers in their boxes. They kill everybody in the kitchens, from the head cook down to the pot boys.[2696] The women barely escape. Madame Campan, on her knees, seized by the back, sees an uplifted saber about to fall on her, when a voice from the foot of the staircase calls out: "What are you doing there? The women are not to be killed!" "Get up, you hussy, the nation forgives you!"—To make up for this the nation helps itself and indulges itself to its heart's content in the palace which now belongs to it. Some honest persons do, indeed, carry money and valuables to the National Assembly, but others pillage and destroy all that they can.[2697] They shatter mirrors, break furniture to pieces, and throw clocks out of the window; they shout the Marseilles hymn, which one of the National Guards accompanies on a harpsichord,[2698] and descend to the cellars, where they gorge themselves. "For more than a fortnight," says an eye witness,[2699] "one walked on fragments of bottles." In the garden, especially, "it might be said that they had tried to pave the walks with broken glass."—Porters are seen seated on the throne in the coronation robes; a trollop occupies the Queen's bed; it is a carnival in which unbridled base and cruel instincts find plenty of good forage and abundant litter. Runaways come back after the victory and stab the dead with their pikes. Nicely dressed prostitutes fooling around with naked corpses.[26100] And, as the destroyers enjoy their work, they are not disposed to be disturbed in it. In the courts of the Carrousel, where 1800 feet of building are burning, the firemen try four times to extinguish the fire; "they are shot at, and threatened with being pitched into the flames,"[26101] while petitioners appear at the bar of the Assembly, and announce in a threatening tone that the Tuileries are blazing, and shall blaze until the dethronement becomes a law.

The poor Assembly, become Girondist through its late mutilation, strives in vain to arrest the downhill course of things, and maintain, as it has just sworn to do, "the constituted authorities";[26102] it strives, at least, to put Louis XVI. in the Luxembourg palace, to appoint a tutor for the Dauphin, to keep the ministers temporarily in office, and to save all prisoners, and those who walk the streets. Equally captive, and nearly as prostrate as the King himself; the Assembly merely serves as a recording office for the popular will, that very morning furnishing evidence of the value which the armed commonalty attaches to its decrees. That morning murders were committed at its door, in contempt of its safe conduct; at eight o'clock Suleau and three others, wrested from their guards, are cut down under its windows. In the afternoon, from sixty to eighty of the unarmed Swiss still remaining in the church of the Feuillants are taken out to be sent to the Hotel-de-ville, and massacred on the way at the Place de Greve. Another detachment, conducted to the section of the Roule, is likewise disposed of in the same way.[26103] Carle, at the head of the gendarmerie, is called out of the Assembly and assassinated on the Place Vendome, and his head is carried about on a pike. The founder of the old monarchical club, M. de Clermont-Tonnerre, withdrawn from public life for two years past, and quietly passing along the streets, is recognized, dragged through the gutter and cut to pieces.—After such warnings (murder and pillage) the Assembly can only obey, and, as usual, conceal its submission beneath sonorous words. If the dictatorial committee, self-imposed at the Hotel-de-ville, still condescends to keep it alive, it is owing to a new investiture,[26104] and by declaring to it that it must not meddle with its doings now or in the future. Let it confine itself to its function, that of rendering decrees made by the faction. Accordingly, like fruit falling from a tree vigorously shaken, these decrees rattle down, one after another, into the hands that await them,[26105]

1. the suspension of the King,

2. the convoking of a national convention,

3. electors and the eligible exempted from all property qualifications,

4. an indemnity for displaced electors,

5. the term of Assemblies left to the decision of the electors,[26106]

6. the removal and arrest of the late ministers,

7. the re-appointment of Servan, Clavieres and Roland,

8. Danton as Minister of Justice,

9. the recognition of the usurping Commune,

10. Santerre confirmed in his new rank,

11. the municipalities empowered to look after general safety,

12. the arrest of suspicious persons confided to all well-disposed citizens,[26107]

13. domiciliary visits prescribed for the discovery of arms and ammunition,[26108]

14. all the justices of Paris to be re-elected by those within their jurisdiction,

15. all officers of the gendarmerie subject to re-election by their soldiers,[26109]

16. thirty sous per diem for the Marseilles troops from the day of their arrival,

17. a court-martial against the Swiss,

18. a tribunal for the dispatch of justice against the vanquished of August 10, and a quantity of other decrees of a still more important bearing:

19. the suspension of the commissioners appointed to enforce the execution of the law in civil and criminal courts,[26110]

20. the release of all persons accused or condemned for military insubordination, for press offenses and pillaging of grain,[26111]

21. the partition of communal possessions,[26112]

22. the confiscation and sale of property belonging to emigres,[26113]

23. the relegation of their fathers, mothers, wives and children into the interior,

24. the banishment or transportation of unsworn ecclesiastics,[26114]

25. the establishment of easy divorce at two months' notice and on demand of one of the parties,[26115] in short, every measure is taken which tend to disturb property, break up the family, persecute conscience, suspend the law, pervert justice, and rehabilitate crime. laws are promulgated to deliver:

* the judicial system,

* the full control of the nation,

* the selection of the members of the future omnipotent Assembly,

* in short, the entire government,

to an autocratic, violent minority, which, having risked all to grab the dictatorship, dares all to keep it.[26116]



VIII.—State of Paris in the Interregnum.

The mass of the population.—Subaltern Jacobins.—The Jacobin leaders.

Let us stop a moment to contemplate this great city and its new rulers.—From afar, Paris seems a club of 700,000 fanatics, vociferating and deliberating on the public squares; near by, it is nothing of the sort. The slime, on rising from the bottom, has become the surface, and given its color to the stream; but the human stream flows in its ordinary channel, and, under this turbid exterior, remains about the same as it was before. It is a city of people like ourselves, governed, busy, and fond of amusement. To the great majority, even in revolutionary times, private life, too complex and absorbing, leaves but an insignificant corner for public affairs. Through routine and through necessity, manufacturing, display of wares, selling, purchasing, keeping accounts, trades, and professions, continue as usual. The clerk goes to his office, the workman to his shop, the artisan to his loft, the merchant to his warehouse, the professional to his cabinet, and the official to his duty;[26117] they are devoted, first of all, to their pursuits, to their daily bread, to the discharge of their obligations, to their own advancement, to their families, and to their pleasures; to provide for these things the day is not too long. Politics only briefly distract them, and then rather out of curiosity, like a play one applauds or hisses in his seat without stepping upon the stage.—"The declaration that the country is in danger," says many eye witnesses,[26118] "has made no change in the physiognomy of Paris. There are the same amusements, the same gossip.... The theaters are full as usual. The wine-shops and places of diversion overflow with the people, National Guards, and soldiers.... The fashionable world enjoys its pleasure-parties,"—"The day after the decree, the effect of the ceremony, so skillfully managed, is very slight. "The National Guard in the procession, writes a patriotic journalist,[26119] "first shows indifference and even boredom"; it is exasperated with night watches and patrol duty; they probably tell each others that in parading for the nation, one finds no time to work for one's self.—A few days after this the manifesto of the Duke of Brunswick "produces no sensation whatever. People laugh at it. Only the newspapers and their readers are familiar with it... . The mass know nothing about it. Nobody fears the coalition nor foreign troops."[26120]—On the 10th of August, outside the theater of the combat, all is quiet in Paris. People walk about and chat in the streets as usual."[26121]—On the 19th of August, Moore, the Englishman,[26122] sees, with astonishment, the heedless crowd filling the Champs Elysees, the various diversions, the air of a fete, the countless small shops in which refreshments are sold accompanied with songs and music, and the quantities of pantomimes and marionettes. "Are these people as happy as they seem to be?" he asks of a Frenchman along with him.—"They are as jolly as gods!"—"Do you think the Duke of Brunswick is ever in their heads?"—"Monsieur, you may be sure of this, that the Duke of Brunswick is the last man they think of."

Such is the unconcern or light-heartedness of the gross, egoistic mass, otherwise busy, and always passive under any government whatever it may be, a veritable flock of sheep, allowing government to do as it pleases, provided it does not hinder it from browsing and capering as it chooses.—As to the men of sensibility who love their country, they are still less troublesome, for they are gone or going (to the army), often at the rate of a thousand and even two thousand a day, ten thousand in the last week of July,[26123] fifteen thousand in the first two weeks of September,[26124] in all perhaps 40,000 volunteers furnished by the capital alone and who, with their fellows proportionate in number supplied by the departments, are to be the salvation of France.—Through this departure of the worthy, and this passivity of the flock, Paris belongs to the fanatics among the population. "These are the sans-culottes," wrote the patriotic Palloy, "the scum and riffraff of Paris, and I glory in belonging to that class which has put down the so-called honest folks."[26125]—"Three thousand workmen," says the Girondist Soulavie, later, "made the Revolution of the 10th of August, against the kingdom of the Feuillants, the majority of the capital and against the Legislative Assembly."[26126] Workmen, day laborers, and petty shop-keepers, not counting women, common vagabonds and regular bandits, form, indeed, one-twentieth of the adult male population of the city, about 9,000 spread over all sections of Paris, the only ones to vote and act in the midst of universal stupor and indifference.—We find in the Rue de Seine, for example, seven of them, Lacaille, keeper of a roasting-shop; Philippe, "a cattle-breeder, who leads around she-asses for consumptives," now president of the section, and soon to become one of the Abbaye butchers; Guerard, "a Rouen river-man who has abandoned the navigation of the Seine on a large scale and keeps a skiff, in which he ferries people over the river from the Pont du Louvre to the Quai Mazarin," and four characters of the same stamp. Their energy, however, replaces their lack of education and numerical inferiority. One day, Guerard, on passing M. Hua, the deputy, tells him in the way of a warning, "You big rascal, you were lucky to have other people with you. If you had been alone, I would have capsized my boat, and had the pleasure of drowning a blasted aristocrat!" These are the "matadors of the quarter".[26127]—Their ignorance does not trouble them; on the contrary, they take pride in coarseness and vulgarity. One of the ordinary speechmakers of the Faubourg Saint-Antoine, Gouchon, a designer for calicos, comes to the bar of the Assembly, "in the name of the men of July 14 and Augusts 10," to glorify the political reign of brutal incapacity; according to him, it is more enlightened than that of the cultivated:[26128] "those great geniuses graced with the fine title of Constitutionalists are forced to do justice to men who never studied the art of governing elsewhere than in the book of experience.... Consulting customs and not principles, these clever people have for a long period been busy with the political balance of things; we have found it without looking for it in the heart of man: Form a government which will place the poor above their feeble resources and the rich below their means, and the balance will be perfect." [26129]

This is more than clear, their declared purpose is a complete leveling, not alone of political rights, but, again, and especially, of conditions and fortunes; they promise themselves "absolute equality, real equality," and, still better, "the magistracy and all government powers."[26130] France belongs to them, if they are bold enough to seize hold of it.—And, on the other hand, should they miss their prey, they feel themselves lost, for the Brunswick manifesto,[26131] which had made no impression on the public, remains deeply impressed in their minds. They apply its threats to themselves, while their imagination, as usual, translates it into a specific legend:[26132] all the inhabitants of Paris are to be led out on the plain of Saint-Denis, and there decimated; previous to this, the most notorious patriots will be singled out together with forty or fifty market-women and broken on the wheel. Already, on the 11th of August, a rumor is current that 800 men of the late royal guards are ready to make a descent on Paris;[26133] that very day the dwelling of Beaumarchais is ransacked for seven hours;[26134] the walls are pierced, the privies sounded, and the garden dug down to the rock. The same search is repeated in the adjoining house. The women are especially "enraged at not finding anything," and wish to renew the attempt, swearing that they will discover where things are hidden in ten minutes. The nightmare is evidently too much for these unballasted minds. They break down under the weight of their accidental kingship, their inflamed pride, extravagant desires, and intense and silent fears which form in them that morbid and evil concoction which, in democracy as well as in a monarchy, fashions a Nero.[26135]

Their leaders, who are even more upset, conceited, and despotic, have no scruples holding them back, for the most noteworthy are corrupt, acting alone or as leaders. Of the three chiefs of the old municipality, Petion, the mayor, actually in semi-retirement, but verbally respected, is set aside and considered as an old decoration. The other two remain active and in office, Manuel,[26136] the syndic-attorney, son of a porter, a loud-talking, untalented bohemian, stole the private correspondence of Mirabeau from a public depository, falsified it, and sold it for his own benefit. Danton,[26137] Manuel's deputy, faithless in two ways, receives the King's money to prevent the riot, and makes use of it to urge it on.—Varlet, "that extraordinary speech-maker, led such a foul and prodigal life as to bring his mother in sorrow to the grave; afterwards he spent what was left, and soon had nothing."[26138]—Others not only lacked honor but even common honesty. Carra, with a seat in the secret Directory of the Federates, and who drew up the plan of the insurrection, had been condemned by the Macon tribunals to two years' imprisonment for theft and burglary.[26139] Westermann, who led the attacking column, had stolen a silver dish, with a coat of arms on it, from Jean Creux, keeper of a restaurant, rue des Poules, and was twice sent away from Paris for swindling.[26140] Panis, chief of the Committee of Supervision,[26141] was turned out of the Treasury Department, where his uncle was a sub cashier, in 1774, for robbery. His colleague, Sergent, appropriates to himself "three gold watches, an agate ring, and other jewels," left with him on deposit.[26142] "Breaking seals, false charges, breaches of trust," embezzlements, are familiar transactions. In their hands piles of silver plate and 1,100,000 francs in gold are to disappear.[26143] Among the members of the new Commune, Huguenin, the president, a clerk at the barriers, is a brazen embezzler.[26144] Rossignol, a journeyman jeweller, implicated in an assassination, is at this moment subject to judicial prosecution.[26145] Hebert, a journalistic garbage bag, formerly check-taker in a theatre, is turned away from the Varietes for larceny.[26146] Among men of action, Fournier, the American, Lazowski, and Maillard are not only murderers, but likewise robbers,[26147] while, by their side, arises the future general of the Paris National Guard, Henriot, at first a domestic in the family of an attorney who turned him out for theft, then a tax-clerk, again turned adrift for theft, and, finally, a police spy, and still incarcerated in the Bicetre prison for another theft, and, at last, a battalion officer, and one of the September executioners.[26148]—Simultaneously with the bandits and rascals, monstrous maniacs come out of their holes. De Sades,[26149] who lived the life of "Justine" before he wrote it, and whom the Revolution delivered from the Bastille, is secretary of the section of the Place Vendome. Marat, the homicidal monomaniac, constitutes himself, after the 23rd of August, official journalist at the Hotel-de-ville, political advisor and consciousness of the new Commune, and the obsessive plan, which he preaches for three years, is merely an instant and direct wholesale butchery.

"Give me," said he to Barbaroux,[26150] "two hundred Neapolitans armed with daggers, and with only a hand-kerchief on their left arms for a buckler, and I will overrun France and build the Revolution."

According to him it is necessary to do away with 260,000 men "on humane grounds," for, unless this is done, there is no safety for the rest.

"The National Assembly may still save France; let it decree that all aristocrats shall wear a blue ribbon, and the moment that three of them are seen in company, let them be hung."

Another way would be

"to lay in wait in dark streets and at corners for the royalists and Feuillants, and cut their throats. Should ten patriots happen to be killed among a hundred men, what does it matter? It is only ninety for ten, which prevents mistakes. Fall upon those who own carriages, employ valets, wear silk coats, or go to the theatres. You may be sure that they are aristocrats."

The Jacobin proletariat has obviously found the leadership that suits them. They will get on with each other without difficulty. In order that this spontaneous massacre may become an administrative measure, the Neros of the gutter have but to await the word of command from the Neros of the Hotel-de-ville.

*****

[Footnote 2601: An expression of Lafayette's in his address to the Assembly.]

[Footnote 2602:Lafayette, "Memoires," I. 452.—Malouet (II. 213) states that there were seventy.]

[Footnote 2603:Cf., for example, "Archives Nationales," A.F. II.116. Petition of 228 notables of Montargis.]

[Footnote 2604: Petition of the 20,000, so-called, presented by Messrs. Guillaume and Dupont de Nemours.—Cf.. Mortimer-Ternaux, I. 278.—According to Buchez et Roux, the petition containing only 7,411 names.]

[Footnote 2605: Mortimer-Ternaux, I.277.]

[Footnote 2606: Moniteur, XIII. 89. The act (July 7) is drawn up with admirable precision and force. On comparing it with the vague, turgid exaggerations of their adversaries, it seems to measure the intellectual distance between the two parties.]

[Footnote 2607: 339 against 224—Roederer ("Chronique des cinquante jours," p.79). "A strong current of opinion by a majority of the inhabitants of Paris sets in favor of the King."—C. Desmoulins; "That class of petty traders and shopkeepers, who are more afraid of the revolutionaries than of so many Uhlans... "]

[Footnote 2608: Mortimer-Ternaux, I. 236. Letter of Roederer to the president of the National Assembly, June 25. "Mr. President, I have the honor to inform the Assembly that an armed mob is marching towards the Chateau."]

[Footnote 2609: Mortimer-Ternaux, I. 245, 246.—II. 81, 131, 148, 170.]

[Footnote 2610: The murder of M. Duhamel, sub-lieutenant of the national guard.]

[Footnote 2611: Letter of Vergniaud and Guadet to the painter Boze (in the "Memoires de Dumouriez").—Roederer, "Chronique des cinquante jours," 295.—Bertrand de Molleville, "Memoires," III. 29.]

[Footnote 2612: Moniteur, XIII. 155 (session of July 16).—Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 69. "Favored by you," says Manuel, "all citizens are entitled to visit the first functionary of the nation... The prince's dwelling should be open, like a church. Fear of the people is an insult to the people. If Louis XVI. possessed the soul of a Marcus Aurelius, he would have descended into his gardens and tried to console a hundred thousand beings, on account of the slowness of the Revolution... Never had there been fewer thieves in the Tuileries than on that day; for the courtiers had fled...The red cap was an honor to Louis XVI's head, and ought to be his crown." At this solemn moment the fraternization of the king with the people took place, and "the next day the same king betrayed, calumniated, and disgraced the people!" Manuel's rigmarole surpasses all that can be imagined. "After this there arises in the panelings of the Louvre, at the confluence of the civil list, another channel, which leads through the shades below to Petion's dungeon... The department, in dealing a blow at the municipality, explains how, at the banquet of the Law, it represents the Law in the form of a crocodile, etc."]

[Footnote 2613: Moniteur, XIII. 93 (session of July 9);—27 (session of July 2).]

[Footnote 2614: Moniteur, XII. 751 (session of June 24); XIII.33 (session of July 3).]

[Footnote 2615: Moniteur, XIII. 224 (session of July 23). Two unsworn priests had just been massacred at Bordeaux and their heads carried through the streets on pikes. Ducos adds: "Since the executive power has put its veto on laws repressing fanaticism, popular executions begin to be repeated. If the courts do not render justice, etc."—Ibid., XIII. 301 (session of July 31).]

[Footnote 2616: Moniteur, XIII. 72 (session of July 7). The king's speech to the Assembly after the Lamourette kiss. "I confess to you, M. President, that I was very anxious for the deputation to arrive, that I might hasten to the Assembly."]

[Footnote 2617: Moniteur, XIII. 313 (session of Aug. 3). The declaration read in the king's name must be weighed sentence by sentence; it sums up his conduct with perfect exactness and thus ends: "What are personal dangers to a king, from whom they would take the love of his people? This is what affects me most. The day will come, perhaps, when the people will know how much I prize its welfare, how much this has always been my concern and my first need. What sorrows would disappear at the slightest sign of its return!"]

[Footnote 2618: Moniteur, XIII. 33, 56 bis 85, 97 (sessions of July 3, 5, 6 and 9).]

[Footnote 2619: Moniteur, XIII. 26, 170, 273 (sessions of July 12, 17, 28).—Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 122 (session of July 23): Addresses of the municipal council of Marseilles, of the federates, of the Angers petitioners, of the Charente volunteers, etc. "A hereditary monarchy is opposed to the Rights of Man. Pass the act of dethronement and France is saved... Be brave, let the sword of the law fall on a perjured functionary and conspirator! Lafayette is the most contemptible, the guiltiest,... the most infamous of the assassins of the people," etc.]

[Footnote 2620: Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 126.—Bertrand de Molleville, III. 294.]

[Footnote 2621: Moniteur, XIII. 325 (session of Aug. 3).]

[Footnote 2622: Moniteur, XII. 738; XII. 340.]

[Footnote 2623: Moniteur, XIII. 170, 171, 187, 208, 335 (sessions of July 17, 18, and 23, and Aug. 5).]

[Footnote 2624: Moniteur, XIII. 187 (session of July 18). "The galleries applaud. The Assembly murmurs."—208 (July 21). "Murmuring, shouts, and cries of Down with the speaker! from the galleries. The president calls the house to order five times, but always fruitlessly."—224 (July 23). "The galleries applaud; long continued murmurs are heard in the Assembly."]

[Footnote 2625: Buzot, "Memoires" (Ed. Dauban, 83 and 84). "The majority of the French people yearned for royalty and the constitution of 1790... It was at Paris particularly that this desire governed the general plan, the discussion of it being the least feared in special conversations and in private society. There were only a few noble-minded, superior men that were worthy of being republicans... The rest desired the constitution of 1791, and spoke of the republicans only as one speaks of very honest maniacs."]

[Footnote 2626: Duvergier, "Collection des lois et decrets," May 29, 1792; July 15, 16, and 18; July 6-20.]

[Footnote 2627: Moniteur, XIII. 25 (session of July 1). Petition of 150 active citizens of the Bonne-Nouvelle section.]

[Footnote 2628: Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 194. Buchez et Roux, XVI. 253. The decree of dismissal was not passed until the 12th of August, but after the 31St of July the municipality demanded it and during the following days several Jacobin grenadiers go to the National Assembly, trample on their bearskin hats and put on the red cap of liberty.]

[Footnote 2629: Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 192 (municipal action of Aug. 5).]

[Footnote 2630: Decree of July 2.]

[Footnote 2631: Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 129.—Buchez et Roux, XV. 458. According to the report of the Minister of War, read the 30th of July, at the evening session, 5,314 department federates left Paris between July 14 and 30. Petion wrote that the levy of federates then in Paris amounted to 2,960, "of which 2,032 were getting ready to go to the camp at Soissons."—A comparison of these figures leads to the approximate number that I have adopted]

[Footnote 2632: Buchez et Roux, XVI. 120, 133 (session of the Jacobins, Aug. 6). The federates "resolved to watch the Chateau, each taking a place in the battalions respectively of the sections in which they lodge, and many incorporated themselves with the battalions of the faubourg St Antoine."]

[Footnote 2633: Mercure de France, April 14, 1793.—" The Revolution," I. p. 332.]

[Footnote 2634: Barbaroux, "Memoires," 37-40.—Lauront-Lautard, "Marseilles depuis 1789 jusqu'a 1815," I. 134. "The mayor, Mourdeille," who had recruited them, "was perhaps very glad to get rid of them."—On the composition of this group and on the previous role of Rebecqui, see chapter VI.]

[Footnote 2635: Buchez et Roux, XVI. 197 and following pages.—Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 148 (the grenadiers numbered only 166).—Moniteur, XIII. 310 (session of Aug. 1). Address of the grenadiers: "They swore on their honor that they did not draw their swords until after being threatened for a quarter of an hour, then insulted and humiliated, until forced to defend their lives against a troop of brigands armed with pistols, and some of them with carbines."—" The reading of this memorandum is often interrupted by hooting from the galleries, in spite of the president's orders."—Hooting again, when they file out of the chamber.]

[Footnote 2636: The lack of men of action greatly embarrassed the Jacobin party. ("Correspondance de Mirabeau et du Comte de la Marck," II. 326.) Letter of M. de Montmorin, July 13, 1792. On the disposition of the people of Paris, wearied and worn out "to excess." "They will take no side, either for or against the king... They no longer stir for any purpose; riots are wholly factitious. This is so right that they are obliged to bring men from the South to get them up. Nearly all of those who forced the gates of the Tuileries, or rather, who got inside of them on the 20th of June, were outsiders or onlookers, got together at the sight of such a lot of pikes and red caps, etc. The cowards ran at the slightest indication of presenting arms, which was done by a portion of the national guard on the arrival of a deputation from the National Assembly, their leaders being obliged to encourage them by telling them that they were not to be fired at."]

[Footnote 2637: Buchez et Roux, XVI. 447. "Chronique des cinquante jours," by Roederer.]

[Footnote 2638: Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 378.-127 Jacobins of Arras, led by Geoffroy and young Robespierre, declare to the Directory that they mean to come to its meetings and follow its deliberations. "It is time that the master should keep his eye on his agents." The Directory, therefore, resigns (July 4, 1792).—Ibid., 462 (report of Leroux, municipal officer). The Paris municipal council, on the night of August 9-10 deliberates under threats of death and the furious shouts of the galleries.]

[Footnote 2639: Duvergier's "Collection of Laws and Decrees," July 4, 5-8, 11-12, 25-28.—Buchez et Roux, XVI. 250. The section of the Theatre Francais (of which Danton is president and Chaumette and Momoro secretaries) thus interpret the declaration of the country being in danger. "After a declaration of the country being in danger by the representatives of the people, it is natural that the people itself should take back its sovereign supervision."]

[Footnote 2640: Schmidt, "Tableaux de la Revolution," I. 99-100. Report to Roland, Oct. 29, 1792.]

[Footnote 2641: Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 199.—Buchez et Roux, XVI. 320.—Moniteur, XIII. 336 (session of Aug. 5). Speech by Collot d'Herbois.]

[Footnote 2642: Moniteur, XI. 20, session of Feb. 4. At this meeting Gorguereau, reporter of the committee on legislation, had already stated that "The authors of these multiplied addresses seem to command rather than demand... It is ever the same sections or the same individuals who deceive you in bringing to you their own false testimony for that of the capital."—"Down with the reporter! From the galleries."—Ibid., XIII. 93, session of July 11. M. Gastelier: "Addresses in the name of the people are constantly read to you, which are not even the voice of one section. We have seen the same individual coming three times a week to demand something in the name of sovereignty." (Shouts of down! down! in the galleries.) Ibid., 208, session of July 21. M. Dumolard: "You must distinguish between the people of Paris and these subaltern intriguers... these habitual oracles of the cafes and public squares, whose equivocal existence has for a long time occupied the attention and claimed the supervision of the police." (Down with the speaker! murmurs and hooting in the galleries).-Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 398. Protests of the arsenal section, read by Lavoisier (the chemist): "The caprice of a knot of citizens (thus) becomes the desire of an immense population."]

[Footnote 2643: Buchez et Roux, XVI. 251.—Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 239 and 243. The central bureau is first opened in "the building of the Saint-Esprit, in the second story, near the passage communicating with the common dwelling." Afterwards the commissioners of the section occupy another room in the Hotel-de-ville, nearly joining the throne-room, where the municipal council is holding its sessions. During the night of August 9-10 both councils sit four hours simultaneously within a few steps of each other.]

[Footnote 2644: Robespierre, "Seventh letter to his constituents," says: "The sections... have been busy for more than a fortnight getting ready for the last Revolution."]

[Footnote 2645: Robespierre, "Seventh letter to his constituents"—Malouet, II. 233, 234.—Roederer, "Chronique des cinquante jours."]

[Footnote 2646: Moniteur, XIII. 318, 319. The petition is drawn up apparently by people who are beside themselves. "If we did not rely on you, I would not answer for the excesses to which our despair would carry us! We would bring on ourselves all the horrors of civil war, provided we could, on dying, drag along with us some of our cowardly assassins!"——The representatives, it must be noted, talk in the same vein. La Source exclaims: "The members here, like yourselves, call for vengeance!"—Thuriot: "The crime is atrocious!"]

[Footnote 2647: Taine is describing a basic trait of human nature, something we see again and again whether our ancestors attacked small, harmless neighboring nations, witches, renegades, Jews, or religious people of another faith.(SR).]

[Footnote 2648: Buchez et Roux, XIX 93, session of Sept. 23, 1792. Speech by Panis: "Many worthy citizens would like to have judicial proof; but political proofs satisfy us"—Towards the end of July the Minister of the Interior had invited Petion to send two municipal officers to examine the Tuileries; but this the council refused to do, so as to keep up the excitement.]

[Footnote 2649: Mallet du Pan, "Memoires," 303. Letter of Malouet, June 29.—Bertrand de Molleville, "Memoires," II. 301.—Hua, 148.—Weber, II. 208.—Madame Campan, "Memoires," II. 188. Already, at the end of 1791, the king was told that he was liable to be poisoned by the pastry-cook of the palace, a Jacobin. For three or four months the bread and pastry he ate were secretly purchased in other places. On the 14th of July, 1792, his attendants, on account of the threats against his life, put a breastplate on him under his coat.]

[Footnote 2650: member of the 1789 Constituent Assembly. (SR).]

[Footnote 2651: Moniteur, VIII. 271, 278. A deputy, excusing his assailants, pretends that d'Espremesnil urged the people to enter the Tuileries garden. It is scarcely necessary to state that during the Constituent Assembly d'Espremenil was one of the most conspicuous members of the extreme "Right."—Duc de Gaete, "Memoires," I. 18.]

[Footnote 2652: Lafayette, "Memoires," I. 465.]

[Footnote 2653: Moniteur, XIII. 327,—Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 176.]

[Footnote 2654: Moniteur, XIII. 340.—The style of these petitions is highly instructive. We see in them the state of mind and degree of education of the petitioners: sometimes a half-educated writer attempting to reason in the vein of the Contrat Social; sometimes, a schoolboy spouting the tirades of Raynal; and sometimes, the corner letter-writer putting together the expressions forming his stock in trade.]

[Footnote 2655: Carra, "Precis historique sur l'origine et les veritables auteurs de l'insurrection du 10 Aout."—Barbaroux, "Memoires, 49. The executive directory, appointed by the central committee of the confederates, held its first meeting in a wine-shop, the Soleil d'or, on the square of the Bastille; the second at the Cadran bleu, on the boulevard; the third in Antoine's room, who then lodged in the same house with Robespierre. Camille Desmoulins was present at this latter meeting. Santerre, Westermann, Fournier the American, and Lazowski were the principal members of this Directory. Another insurrectionary plan was drawn up on the 30th of July in a wine-shop at Charenton by Barbaroux, Rebecqui, Pierre Bayle, Heron, and Fournier the American.—Cf. J. Claretie, "Camille Desmoulins," p. 192. Desmoulins wrote, a little before the 10th of August: "If the National Assembly thinks that it cannot save the country, let it declare then, that, according to the Constitution, and like the Romans, it hands this over to each citizen. Let the tocsin be rung forthwith, the whole nation assembled, and every man, as at Rome, be invested with the power of putting to death all well-known conspirators!"]

[Footnote 2656: Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 182. Decision of the Quinze-Vingt Section, Aug. 4.—Buchez et Roux, XVI. 402-410. History of Quinze-Vingt Section.]

[Footnote 2657: Moniteur. XIII. 367, session of Aug. 8.—Ibid., 369 and following pages. Session of Aug. 9. Letters and speeches of maltreated deputies.]

[Footnote 2658: Moniteur, 371. Speech of M. Girardin: "I am convinced that most of those who insulted me were foreigners."—Ibid., 370. Letter of M. Frouvieres: "Many of the citizens, coming out of their shops, exclaimed: How can they insult the deputies in this way? Run away! run off!"—M. Jolivet, that evening attending a meeting of the Jacobin Club, states "that the Jacobin tribunes were far from sharing in this frenzy." He heard "one individual in these tribunes exclaim, on the proposal to put the dwellings of the deputies on the list, that it was outrageous."—Countless other details show the small number and character of the factions.—Ibid., 374. Speech of Aubert-Dubacet: "I saw men dressed in the coats of the national guard, with countenances betraying everything that is most vile in wickedness." There are "a great many evil-disposed persons among the federates."]

[Footnote 2659: Moniteur, XIII. 170 (letter of M. de Joly, Minister of Justice).—Ibid., 371, declaration of M. Jolivet.—Buchez et Roux, XVI. 370 (session of the Jacobin Club, Aug. 8, at evening). Speech by Goupilleau.]

[Footnote 2660: One may imagine with what satisfaction Lenin, must have read this description agreeing: "Yes, open voting by a named and identified count, that is how a leader best can control any assembly." (SR).]

[Footnote 2661: Moniteur, XIII. 370.—Cf. Ibid., the letter of M. Chapron.—Ibid., 372. Speech by M. A. Vaublanc.—Moore, "Journal during a Residence in France," I. 25 (Aug. 10). The impudence of the people in the galleries was intolerable. There was "a loud and universal peal of laughter from all the galleries" on the reading of a letter, in which a deputy wrote that he was threatened with decapitation.—" Fifty members were shouting at the same time; the most boisterous night I ever was witness to in the House of Commons was calmness itself alongside of this."]

[Footnote 2662: Moniteur, Ibid., p. 371.—Lafayette, I. 467. "On the 9th of August, as can be seen in the unmutilated editions of the Logographe, the Assembly, almost to a man, arose and declared that it was not free." Ibid., 478. "On the 9th of August the Assembly had passed a decree declaring that it was not free. This decree was torn up on the 10th. But it is no that it was passed."]

[Footnote 2663: Moniteur, XIII. 370, 374, 375. Speech by Roederer, letter of M. de Joly, and speech by Petion.]

[Footnote 2664: Mathieu Dumas, "Memoires," II. 461.]

[Footnote 2665: "Chronique des cinquante jours," by Roederer.—Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 260.—Buchez et Roux, XVI. 458.—Towards half-past seven in the morning there were only from sixty to eighty members present. (Testimony of two of the Ministers who leave the Assembly.)]

[Footnote 2666: Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 205. At the ballot of July 12, not counting members on leave of absence or delegated elsewhere, and the dead not replaced, there were already twenty-seven not answering the call, while after that date three others resigned.—Buchez et Roux, XVII. 340 (session of Sept. 2, 1792). Herault de Sechelles is elected president by 248 out of 257 voters.—Hua, 164 (after Aug. 10). "We attended the meetings of the House simply to show that we had not given them up. We took no part in the discussions, and on the vote being taken, standing or sitting, we remained in our seats. This was the only protest we could make."]

[Footnote 2667: Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 229, 233, 417 and following pages. M. Mortimer-Ternaux is the first to expose, with documents to support him and critical discussion, the formation of the revolutionary commune.—The six sections referred to are the Lombards, Gravilliers, Mauconseil, Gobelins, Theatre-Francais, and Faubourg Poissonniere.]

[Footnote 2668: For instance, the Enfants Rouges, Louvre, Observatoire, Fontaine-Grenelle, Faubourg Saint-Denis, and Thermes de Julien..]

[Footnote 2669: For example, at the sections of Montreuil, Popincourt, and Roi de Sicile..]

[Footnote 2670: For example, Ponceau, Invalides, Sainte-Genevieve.]

[Footnote 2671: Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 240.]

[Footnote 2672: Mortimer-Ternaux, 446 (list of the commissioners who took their seats before 9 o'clock in the morning). "Le Tableau general des Commisaires des 48 sections qui ont compose le conseil general de la Commune de Paris, le 10 Aout, 1792," it must be noted, was not published until three or four months later, with all the essential falsifications. It may be found in Buchez et Roux, XVI. 450.—"Relation de l'abbe Sicard." "At that time a lot of scoundrels, after the general meeting of the sections was over, passed acts in the name of the whole assemblage and had them executed, utterly unknown to those who had done this, or by those who were the unfortunate victims of these proceedings." (supported by documents).]

[Footnote 2673: Mortimer-Ternaux, II. 270, 273. (The official report of Mandat's examination contains five false statements, either through omission or substitution.)]

[Footnote 2674: Claretie, "Camille Desmoulins," p.467 (notes of Topino-Lebrun on Danton's trial). Danton, in the pleadings, says: "I left at 1 o'clock in the morning. I was at the revolutionary commune and pronounced sentence of death on Mandet, who had orders to fire op the people." Danton in the same place says: "I had planned the 10th of August." It is very certain that from 1 to 7 o'clock in the morning (when Mandat was killed) he was the principal leader of the insurrectional commune. Nobody was so potent, so overbearing, so well endowed physically for the control of such a conventicle as Danton. Besides, among the new-comers he was the best known and with the most influence through his position as deputy of the syndic-attorney. Hence his prestige after the victory and appointment as Minister of Justice. His hierarchical superior, the syndic-attorney Manuel, who was there also and signed his name, showed himself undoubtedly the pitiful fellow he was, an affected, crazy, ridiculous loud-talker. For this reason he was allowed to remain syndic-attorney as a tool and servant.—Beaulieu, "Essais sur la Revolution Francaise," III. 454. "Rossignal boasted of having committed this assassination himself."]

[Footnote 2675: "Pieces interessantes pour l'histoire," by Petion, 1793. "I desired the insurrection, but I trembled for fear that it might not succeed. My position was a critical one. I had to do my duty as a citizen without sacrificing that of a magistrate; externals had to be preserved without derogating from forms. The plan was to confine me in my own house; but they forgot or delayed to carry this out. Who do you think repeatedly sent to urge the execution of this measure? Myself; yes, myself!"]

[Footnote 2676: In "Histoire de la Revolution Francaise" by Ferrand & Lamarque, Cavailles, Paris 1851, vol. II. Page 225 we may read the following footnote: "This very evening, a young artillery lieutenant observed, from a window of a house in the rue de l'Echelle, the preparations which were being undertaken in the chateau des Tuileries: that was Napoleon Bonaparte.—Well, right, asked the deputy Pozze di Borgo, his compatriot, what do you think of what is going on? This evening they will attack the chateau. Do you think the people will succeed?—I don't know, answered the future emperor, but what I can assure you is that if they gave me the command of two Swiss battalions and one hundred good horsemen, I should repel the insurgents in a manner which would for ever rid them of any desire to return." (SR)]

[Footnote 2677: Napoleon, at this moment, was at the Carrousel, in the house of Bourrienne's brother. "I could see conveniently," he says, "all that took place during the day... The king had at least as many troops in his defense as the Convention since had on the 13th Vendemaire, while the enemies of the latter were much more formidable and better disciplined. The greater part of the national guard showed that they favored the king; this justice must be done to it." (It might be helpful to some readers to know that when Napoleon refers to the 13th Vendemaire, (5th Oct. 1795) that was when he, as a young officer was given the task to defend the Convention against a royalist uprising. He was quick-witted and got hold of some guns in time, loaded them with grape-shot, placed them in front of the Parisian church of Saint-Roch and completely eliminated the superior royalist force. SR.)]

[Footnote 2678: Official report of Leroux. On the side of the garden, along the terrace by the river, and then on the return were "a few shouts of Vive le roi! many for Vive la nation! Vivent les sans-culottes! Down with the king! Down with the veto! Down with the old porker! etc.—But I can certify that these insults were all uttered between the Pont-Turnant and the parterre, and by about a dozen men, among which were five or six gunners following the king, the same as flies follow an animal they are bent on tormenting."]

[Footnote 2679: Mortimer-Ternaux, III. 223, 273—Letter of Bonnaud, chief of the Sainte-Marguerite battalion: "I cannot avoid marching at their head under any pretext... Never will I violate the Constitution unless I am forced to."—The Gravilliers section and that of the Faubourg Poissonniere cashiered their officers and elected others.]

[Footnote 2680: Mortimer-Ternaux, IV. 342. Speech of Fabre d'Eglantine at the Jacobin Club, Nov. 5, 1792. "Let it be loudly proclaimed that these are the same men who captured the Tuileries, broke into the prisons of the Abbaye, of Orleans and of Versailles."]

[Footnote 2681: In this respect the riot of the Champ-de-Mars (July 17, 1791), the only one that was suppressed, is very instructive: "As the militia would not as usual ground their arms on receiving the word of command from the mob, this last began, according to custom, to pelt them with stones. To be deprived of their Sunday recreational activities, to be marching through the streets under a scorching sun, and then be remain standing like fools on a public holiday, to be knocked out with bricks, was a little more than they had patience to bear so that, without waiting for an order, they fired and killed a dozen or two of the raggamuffins. The rest of the brave chaps bolted. If the militia had waited for orders they might, I fancy, have been all knocked down before they received any... Lafayette was very near being killed in the morning; but the pistol failed to go off at his breast. The assassin was immediately secured, but he arranged to be let free" (Gouverneur Morris, letter of July 20, 1791). Likewise, on the 29th of August, 1792, at Rouen, the national guard, defending the Hotel-de-ville, is pelted with stones more than an hour while many are wounded. The magistrates make every concession and try every expedient, the mayor reading the riot act five or six times. Finally the national guard, forced into it, exclaim: "If you do not allow us to repel force with force we shall leave." They fire and four persons are killed and two wounded, and the crowd breaks up. ("Archives Nationales," F7, 2265, official report of the Rouen municipality, Aug. 29; addresses of the municipality, Aug. 28; letter of the lieutenant-colonel of the gendarmerie, Aug. 30, etc.).]

[Footnote 2682: Official report of Leroux.—"Chronique des cinquante jours," by Roederer.—"Details particuliers sur la journee du 10 Aout," by a bourgeois of Paris, an eye-witness (1822).]

[Footnote 2683: Barbaroux, "Memoires," 69. "Everything betokened victory for the court if the king had never left his post... If he had shown himself, if he had mounted on horseback the battalions of Paris would have declared for him."]

[Footnote 2684: "Revolution de Paris," number for Aug. 11, 1792. "The 10th of August, 1792, is still more horrible than the 24th of August, 1572, and Louis XVI. a greater monster than Charles IX. "—"Thousands of torches were found in cellars, apparently placed there to burn down Paris at a signal from this modern Nero." In the number for Aug.18: "The place for Louis Nero and for Medicis Antoinette is not in the towers of the Temple; their heads should have fallen from the guillotine on the night of the 10th of August." (Special details of a plan of the king to massacre all patriot deputies, and intimidate Paris with a grand pillaging and by keeping the guillotine constantly at work.) "That crowned ogre and his Austrian panther."]

[Footnote 2685: Narrative of the Minister Joly (written four days after the event). The king departs about half-past eight.—Cf. Madame Campan, "Memoires," and Moniteur, XIII. 378.]

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