Favorite game is still found in the clergy, more vigorously hunted than the nobles; Roland, charged with the duty of maintaining public order, asks himself how the lives of inoffensive priests, which the law recommends to him, can be protected.—At Troyes, at the house of M. Fardeau, an old non-conformist cure, an altar decked with its sacred vessels is discovered, and M. Fardeau, arrested, refuses to take the civic oath. Torn from his prison, and ordered to shout "Vive la Nation!" he again refuses. On this, a volunteer, borrowing an ax from a baker, chops off his head, and this head, washed in the river, is borne to the Hotel-de-ville.—At Meaux, a brigade of Parisian gendarmerie murders seven priests, and, as an extra, six ordinary malefactors in confinement. At Rheims, the Parisian volunteers first make way with the post-master and his clerk, both under suspicion because the smell of burnt paper had issued from their chimney, and, next, M. de Montrosier, an old retired officer, which is the opening of the hunt. Afterwards they fall upon two ecclesiastics with pikes and sabers, whom their game-beaters have brought in from the country, then on the former cure of Saint-Jean, and on that of Rilly; their corpses are cut up, paraded through the streets in portions, and burnt in a bonfire; one of the wounded priests, the abbe Alexandre, is thrown in still alive.—Roland recognizes the men of September, who, exposing their still bloody pikes, came to his domicile to demand their wages; wherever the band passes it announces, "in the name of the people," its "plenary power to spread the example of the capital." Now, as 40,000 unsworn priests are condemned by the decree of August 26 to leave their departments in a week and France in a fortnight, shall they be allowed to depart? Eight thousand of them at Rouen, in obedience to the decree, charter transports, which the riotous population of both sides of the Seine prevent from leaving. Roland sees in his dispatches that in Rouen, as elsewhere, they crowd the municipalities for their passports, but that these are often refused. Better still, at Troyes; at Meaux, at Lyons, at Dole, and in many other towns, the same thing is done as at Paris; they are confined in particular houses or in prisons, at least, provisionally, "for fear that they may congregate under the German eagle"; so that, made rebellious and declared traitors in spite of themselves, they may still remain in their pens subject to the knife. As the exportation of specie is prohibited, those who have procured the necessary coin are robbed of it on the frontier, while others, who fly at all hazards, tracked like wild boars, or run down like hares, escape like the bishop of Barral, athwart bayonets, or like the abbe Guillon, athwart sabers, when they are not struck down, like the abbe Pescheur, by the blows of a gun-stock.
It is soon dawn. The files are too numerous and too large; Roland finds that, out of eighty-three, he can examine but fifty; he must hasten on; leaving the East, his eyes again turn to the South.—On this side, too, there are strange sights. On the 2nd of September, at Chalons-sur-Marne, M. Chanlaire, an octogenarian and deaf, is returning, with his prayer-book under his arm, from the Mall, to which he resorted daily to read his prayers. A number of Parisian volunteers who meet him, seeing that he looks like a devotee, order him to shout, "Vive la Liberte" Unable to understand them, he makes no reply. They then seize him by the ears, and, not marching fast enough, they drag him along; his old ears give way, and, excited by seeing blood, they cut off his ears and nose, and thus, the poor old man dripping with blood, they reach the Hotel-de-Ville. At this sight a notary, posted there as sentinel, and who is a man of feeling, is horror-stricken and escapes, while the other National Guards hasten to shut the iron gates. The Parisians, still dragging along their captive, go to the district and then to the department bureau "to denounce aristocrats"; on the way they continue to strike the tottering old man, who falls down; they then decapitate him, place pieces of his body on pikes, and parade these about. Meanwhile, in this same town, twenty-two gentlemen; at Beaune, forty priests and nobles; at Dijon, eighty-three heads of families, locked up as suspected without evidence or examination, and confined at their own expense two months under pikes, ask themselves every morning whether the populace and the volunteers, who shout death cries through the streets, mean to release them in the same way as in Paris.—A trifle is sufficient to provoke a murder. On the 19th of August, at Auxerre as the National Guard is marching along, three citizens, after having taken the civic oath, "left the ranks," and, on being called back, "to make them fall in," one, either impatient or in ill-humor, "replied with an indecent gesture". The populace, taking it as an insult, instantly rush at them, and shoving aside the municipal body and the National Guards, wound one and kill the other two. A fortnight after, in the same town, several young ecclesiastics are massacred, and "the corpse of one of them remains three days on a manure heap, the relatives not being allowed to bury it." About the same date, in a village of sabot makers, five leagues from Autun, four ecclesiastics provided with passports, among them a bishop and his two grand-vicars, are arrested, then examined, robbed, and murdered by the peasantry.—Below Autun, especially in the district of Roanne, the villagers burn the rent-rolls of national property; the volunteers put property-owners to ransom; both, apart from each other or together, give themselves up "to every excess and to every sort of iniquity against those whom they suspect of incivism under pretense of religious opinions." However preoccupied or upset Roland's mind may be by the philosophic generalities with which it is filled, he has long inspected manufactures in this country; the name of every place is familiar to him; objects and forms are this time clearly defined to his arid imagination, and he begins to see things through and beyond mere words.
Madame Roland rests her finger on Lyons, so familiar to her two years before; she becomes excited against "the quadruple aristocracy of the town, petty nobles, priests, heavy merchants, and limbs of the law; in short, those formerly known as honest folks, according to the insolence of the ancient regime." She may now find an aristocracy of another kind there, that of the gutter. Following the example of Paris, the Lyons clubbists, led by Charlier, have arranged for a massacre on a grand scale of the evil-disposed or suspected Another ringleader, Dodieu, has drawn up a list by name of two hundred aristocrats to be hung; on the 9th of September, women with pikes, the maniacs of the suburbs, bands of "the unknown," collected by the central club, undertake to clean out the prisons. If the butchery is not equal to that of Paris, it is because the National Guard, more energetic, interferes just at the moment when a Parisian emissary, Saint-Charles, reads off a list of names in the prison of Roanne already taken from the prison register. But, in other places, it arrives too late.—Eight officers of the Royal-Pologne regiment, in garrison at Auch, some of them having been in the service twenty and thirty years, had been compelled to resign owing to the insubordination of their men; but, at the express desire of the Minister of War, they had patriotically remained at their posts, and, in twenty days of laborious marching, they had led their regiment from Auch to Lyons. Three days after their arrival, seized at night in their beds, conducted to Pierre-Encize, pelted with stones on the way, kept in secret confinement, and with frequent and prolonged examinations, all this merely put their services and their innocence in stronger light. They are taken from the prison by the Jacobin mob; of the eight, seven are killed in the street, and four priests along with them, while the exhibition of their work by the murderers is still more brazen than at Paris. They parade the heads of the dead all night on the ends of their pikes; they carry them to the Place des Terreaux into the coffee-houses; they set them on the tables and derisively offer them beer; they then light torches, enter the Celestins theater, and, marching on the stage with their trophies, blending real and mock tragedy.—The epilogue is both grotesque and horrible. Roland, at the bottom of the file, finds a letter from his colleague, Danton, who begs him to release the officers, murdered three months ago, "for," says Danton, "if no charge can be found against them, it would be crying injustice to keep them longer in irons." Roland's clerk makes a minute on Danton's letter: "This matter disposed of." At this I imagine the couple looking at each other in silence. Madame Roland may remember that, at the beginning of the Revolution, she herself demanded heads, especially "two illustrious heads," and hoped "that the National Assembly would formally try them, or that some generous Decius" would devote himself to "striking them down." Her prayers are granted. The trial is about to begin in the regular way, and the Decius she has invoked is everywhere found throughout France.
The south-east corner remains, that Provence, described to him by Barbaroux as the last retreat of philosophy and freedom. Roland follows the Rhone down with his finger, and on both banks he finds, as he passes along, the usual characteristic misdeeds.—On the right bank, in Cantal and in the Gard, "the defenders of the country" fill their pockets at the expense of taxpayers designated by themselves; this forced subscription is called "a voluntary gift." "Poor laborers at Nismes were taxed 50 francs, others 200, 300, 900, 1,000, under penalty of devastation and of bad treatment."—In the country near Tarascon the volunteers, returning to the old-fashioned ways of bandits, brandish the saber over the mother's head, threaten to smother the aunt in her bed, hold the child over a deep well, and thus extort from the farmer or proprietor even as much as 4,000 or 5,000 francs. Generally the farmer keeps silent, for, in case of complaint, he is sure to have his buildings burnt and his olive trees cut down.—On the left bank, in the Isere, Lieutenant-colonel Spendeler, seized by the populace of Tullins, was murdered, and then hung by his feet in a tree on the roadside;—in the Drome, the volunteers of Gard forced the prison at Montelimart and hacked an innocent person to death with a saber; in Vaucluse, the pillaging is general and constant. With all public offices in their hands, and they alone admitted into the National Guard, the old brigands of Avignon, with the municipality for their accomplice, sweep the town and raid about the country; in town, 450,000 francs of "voluntary gifts" are handed over to the Glaciere murderers by the friends and relatives of the dead;—in the country, ransoms of 1,000 and 10,000 francs are imposed on rich cultivators, to say nothing of the orgies of conquest and the pleasures of despots, money forcibly obtained in honor of innumerable liberty trees, banquets at a cost of five or six hundred francs, paid for by extorted funds, reveling of every sort and unrestrained havoc on the invaded farms; in short, the abuse drunken force amusing itself with brutality and proud of its violence.
Following this long line of murders and robbery, the Minister reaches Marseilles, and I imagine him stopping at this city some-what dumbfounded. Not that he is in any way astonished at widespread murders; undoubtedly he has had received information of them from Aix, Aubagne, Apt, Brignolles, and Eyguieres, while there are a series of them at Marseilles, one in July, two in August, and two in September; but this he must be used to. What disturbs him here is to see the national bond dissolving; he sees departments breaking away, new, distinct, independent, complete governments forming on the basis of popular sovereignty; publicly and officially, they keep funds raised for the central government for local uses; they institute penalties against their inhabitants seeking refuge in France; they organize tribunals, levy taxes, raise troops, and undertake military expeditions. Assembled together to elect representatives to the Convention, the electors of the Bouches-du-Rhone were, additionally, disposed to establish throughout the department "the reign of liberty and equality," and to this effect they found, says one of them, "an army of 1,200 heroes to purge the districts in which the bourgeois aristocracy still raises its bold, imprudent head." Consequently, at Sonas, Noves, St. Remy, Maillane, Eyrages, Graveson, Eyguieres, extended over the territory consisting of the districts of Tarascon, Arles and Salon, these twelve hundred heroes are authorized to get a living out of the inhabitants at pleasure, while the rest of the expenses of the expedition are to be borne "by suspected citizens." These expeditions are prolonged six weeks and more; one of them goes outside of the department, to Monosque, in the Basses-Alpes, and Monosque, obliged to pay 104,000 francs to its "saviors and fathers," as an indemnity for traveling expenses, writes to the Minister that, henceforth, it can no longer meet his impositions.
What kind of improvised sovereigns are these who have instituted perambulating brigandage? Roland, on this point, has simply to question his friend Barbaroux, their president and the executive agent of their decrees. "Nine hundred persons," Barbaroux himself writes, "generally of slight education, impatiently listening to conservatives, and yielding all attention to the effervescent, cunning in the diffusion of calumnies, petty suspicious minds, a few men of integrity but unenlightened, a few enlightened but cowardly; many of them patriotic, but without judgment, without philosophy"; in short, a Jacobin club, and Jacobin to such an extent as to "make the hall ring with applause on receiving the news of the September massacre"; in the foremost ranks, "a crowd of men eager for office and money, eternal informers, imagining trouble or exaggerating it to obtain for themselves lucrative commissions;" in other words, the usual pack of hungry appetites in full chase.—To really know them, Roland has only to examine the last file, that of the neighboring departments, and consider their colleagues in Var. In this great wreck of reason and of integrity, called the Jacobin Revolution, a few stray waifs still float on the surface; many of the department administrations are composed of liberals, friends of order, intelligent men, upright and firm defenders of the law. Such was the Directory of Var. To get rid of it the Toulon Jacobins contrived an ambush worthy of the Borgias and Oliverettos of the sixteenth century. On the 28th of July, in the forenoon, Sylvestre, president of the club, distributed among his trusty men in the suburbs and purlieus of the town an enormous sack of red caps, while he posted his squads in convenient places. In the mean time the municipal body, his accomplices, formally present themselves at the department bureau, and invite the administrators to join them in fraternizing with the people. The administrators, suspecting nothing, accompany them, each arm in arm with a municipal officer or delegate of the club. They scarcely reach the square when there rushes upon it from every avenue a troop of red-caps lying in wait. The syndic-attorney, the vice-president of the department, and two other administrators, are seized, cut down and hung; another, M. Debaux, succeeding in making his escape, hides away, scales the ramparts during the night, breaks his thigh and lies there on the ground; he is discovered the next morning; a band, led by Jassaud, a harbor-laborer, and by Lemaille, calling him self "the town hangman," come and raise him up, carry him away in a barrow, and hang him at the first lamppost. Other bands dispatch the public prosecutor in the same fashion, a district administrator, and a merchant, and then, spreading over the country, pillage and slay among the country houses.—In vain has the commandant of the place, M. Dumerbion, entreated the municipality to proclaim martial law. Not only does it refuse, but it enjoins him to order one-half of his troops back to their barracks. By way of an offset, it sets free a number of soldiers condemned to the galleys, and all that are confined for insubordination.—Henceforth every shadow of discipline vanishes, and, in the following month, murders multiply. M. de Possel, a navy administrator, is taken from his dwelling, and a rope is passed around his neck; he is saved just in time by a bombardier, the secretary of the club. M. Senis, caught in his country-house, is hung on the Place du Vieux Palais. Desidery, a captain in the navy, the cure of La Valette, and M. de Sacqui des Thourets, are beheaded in the suburbs, and their beads are brought into town on the ends of three poles. M. de Flotte d'Argenson, vice-admiral, a man of Herculean stature, of such a grave aspect, and so austere that he is nicknamed the "Pere Eternel" is treacherously enticed to the entrance of the Arsenal, where he sees the lantern already dropping; he seizes a gun, defends himself; yields to numbers, and after having been slashed with sabers, is hung. M. de Rochemaure, a major-general of marines, is likewise sabred and hung in the same manner; a main artery in the neck, severed by the blow of the saber, spouts blood from the corpse and forms a pool on the pavement; Barry, one of the executioners, washes his hands in it and sprinkles the by-standers as if bestowing a blessing on them.—Barry, Lemaille, Jassaud, Sylvestre, and other leading assassins, the new kings of Toulon, sufficiently resemble those of Paris. Add to these a certain Figon, who gives audience in his garret, straightens out social inequalities, forces the daughters of large farmers to marry poor republicans, and rich young men to marry prostitutes, and, taking the lists furnished by the club or neighboring municipalities, ransoming all the well-to-do and opulent persons inscribed on them. In order that the portraiture of the band may be complete, it must be noted that, on the 23rd of August, it attempted to set free the 1800 convicts; the latter, not comprehending that they were wanted for political allies, did not dare sally forth, or, at least, the reliable portion of the National Guard arrived in time to put their chains on again. But here its efforts cease, and for more than a year public authority remains in the hands of a Jacobin faction which, as far as public order is concerned, does not even have the morals of a convict.
More than once during the course of this long review the Minister must have flushed with shame; for to the reprimands dispatched by him to these apathetic administrations, they reply by citing himself as an example:
"You desire us to denounce the arbitrary arrests to the public prosecutor; have you denounced those guilty of similar and yet greater crimes committed at the capital?"—
From all quarters come the cries of the oppressed appealing to "the patriot Minister, the sworn enemy of anarchy," to "the good and incorruptible Minister of the Interior, his only reproach, the common sense of his wife," and he could only reply with empty phrases and condolences:
"To lament the events which so grievously distress the province, all administrations being truly useful when they forestall evils, it being very sad to be obliged to resort to such remedies, and recommend to them a more active supervision."
"To lament and find consolation in the observations made in the letter," which announces four murders, but calls attention to the fact that "the victims immolated are counter-revolutionaries."
Roland has carried on written dialogues with the village municipalities, and given lessons in constitutional law to communities of pot-breakers.—But, on this territory, he is defeated by his own principles, while the pure Jacobins read him a lesson in turn; they, likewise, are able to deduce the consequences of their own creed.
"Brother and Friend, Sir," write those of Rouen, "not to be always at the feet of the municipality, we have declared ourselves permanent, deliberative sections of the Commune."
Let the so-called constituted authorities, the formalists and pedants of the Executive Council and the Minister of the Interior, look twice before censuring the exercise of popular sovereignty. This sovereign raises his voice and drives his clerks back into their holes; spoliation and murder, all this is just.
"Can you have forgotten that, after the tempest, as you yourself declared in the height of the storm, it is the nation which saves itself? Well, sir, this is what we have done... What! when all France was resounding with that long expected proclamation of the abolition of tyranny, you were willing that the traitors, who strove to reestablish it, should escape public prosecution! My God, what century is this in which we find such Ministers!"
Arbitrary taxes, penalties, confiscations, revolutionary expeditions, nomadic garrisons, pillage, what fault can be found with all that?
"We do not pretend that these are legal methods; but, drawing nearer to nature, we demand what object the oppressed have in view in invoking justice. Is it to lag behind and vainly pursue an equitable adjustment which is rendered fleeting by judicial forms? Correct these abuses or do not complain of the sovereign people suppressing them in advance.... You, sir, with so many reasons for it, would do well to recall your insults and redeem the wrongs you have inflicted before we happen to render them public."... "Citizen Minister, people flatter you; you are told too often that you are virtuous; the moment this gives you pleasure you cease to be so.... Discard the astute brigands who surround you, listen to the people, and remember that a citizen Minister is merely the executor of the sovereign will of the people."
However narrow Roland's outlook may be, he must finally comprehend that the innumerable robberies and murders which he has just noted over are not a thoughtless eruption, a passing crisis of delirium, but a manifesto of the victorious party, the beginning of an established system of government. Under this system, write the Marseilles Jacobins,
"to-day, in our happy region, the good rule over the bad, and constitute a party which allows no contamination; whatever is vicious has gone into hiding or has been exterminated." The programme is very precise, and acts form its commentary. This is the programme which the faction, throughout the interregnum, sets openly before the electors.
[Footnote 3201: Guillon de Montleon, I. 122. Letter of Laussel, dated Paris, 28th of August, 1792, to the Jacobins of Lyons: "Tell me how many heads have been cut off at home. It would be infamous to let our enemies escape." (1792).]
[Footnote 3202: "Les Revolutions de Paris," by Prudhomme, Vol. XIII. pp. 59-63 (14th of July, 3 Decrees of the 10th and 11th of August, 1792.)]
[Footnote 3204: Prudhomme, number of the 15th of September, p. 483.—Mortimer-Ternaux, IV. 430.]
[Footnote 3205: Mortimer-Ternaux. IV. II. Fauchet's report, Nov. 6, 1792.—Ib., IV. 91, 142. Discourse of M. Fockedey, administrator of the department of the north, and of M. Bailly, deputy de Seine-et-Marne.]
[Footnote 3206: Prudhomme, number of Sept. 1, 1792, pp. 375, 381, 385: number of Sept. 22, pp. 528-530,—Cf. Guillon de Montleon, I. 144. Here are some of the principles announced by the Jacobin leaders of Lyons, Chalier, Laussel, Cusset, Rouillot, etc. "The time has come when this prophecy must be fulfilled: The rich shall be put in the place of the poor, and the poor in the place of the rich."—"If a half of their property be left them the rich will still be happy."—"If the laboring people of Lyons are destitute of work and of bread, they can profit by these calamities in helping themselves to wealth in the quarter where they find it."—"No one who is near a sack of wheat can die of hunger. Do you wish the word that will buy all that you want? Slay!—or perish!"]
[Footnote 3207: Prudhomme, number for the 28th of August, 1792, pp. 284-287.]
[Footnote 3208: Cf.. "The French Revolution," I.346. In ten of the departments the seventh jacquerie continues the sixth without a break. Among other examples, this letter from the administrators of Tarn, June 18, 1792, may be read ("Archives Nationales," F7, 3271). "Numerous bands overran both the city (Castres) and the country. They forcibly entered the houses of the citizens, broke the furniture to pieces, and pillaged everything that fell into their hands. Girls and women underwent shameful treatment. Commissioners sent by the district and the municipality to advocate peace were insulted and menaced. The pillage was renewed; the home of the citizen was violated." The administrators add: "In many places the progress made by the constitution was indicated by the speedy and numerous emigrations of its enemies."]
[Footnote 3209: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3272. Letter of the administrators of the Var, May 27, 1792.—Letter of the minister, Duranthon, May 28.—Letter of the commission composing the directory Oct. 31.]
[Footnote 3210: "Archives Nationales," Letter of the administrators of Var, May. 27.—The saying is the summary of the revolutionary spirit; it recurs constantly.—Cf. the Duc de Montpensier, "Memoires," p. 11. At Aix one of his guards said to the sans-culotte who were breaking into the room where he had been placed: "Citizens, by what order do you enter here? and why have you forced the guard at the door?" One of them. answered: "By order of the people. Don't you know that the people is sovereign?"]
[Footnote 3211: "Archives Nationales," letter of the public prosecutor, May 23.—Letters of the administrators of the department, May 22, and 27 (on the events of the 13th of May at Beausset).]
[Footnote 3212: "Archives Nationales," F7 3193 and 3194. Previous details may be found in these files. This department is one of those in which the seventh jacquerie is merely a prolongation of the sixth.—Cf. F7, 3193. Letter of the royal Commissioner at Milhau, May 5, 1791. "The situation is getting worse; the administrative bodies continue powerless and without resources. Most of their members are still unable to enter upon their duties; while the factions, who still rule, multiply their excesses in every direction. Another house in the country, near the town, has been burnt; another broken into, with a destruction of the furniture and a part of the dinner-service, and doors and windows broken open and smashed; several houses visited, under the pretense of arms or powder being concealed in them; all that is found with private persons and dealers not of the factious party is carried off; tumultuous shouts, nocturnal assemblages, plots for pillage or burning; disturbances caused by the sale of grain, searches under this pretext in private granaries, forced prices at current reductions; forty louis taken from a lady retired into the country, found in her trunk, which was broken into, and which, they say, should have been in assignats. The police and municipal officers witnesses of these outrages, are sometimes forced to sanction them with their presence; they neither dare suppress them nor punish the well-known authors of them. Such is a brief statement of the disorders committed in less than eight days."—In relation specially to Saint-Afrique. Cf. F7, 3194, the letter, among others, of the department administrator, march 29, 1792.]
[Footnote 3213: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3193. Extract from the registers of the clerk of the juge-de-paix of Saint-Afrique, and report by the department commissioners, Nov. 10, 1792, with the testimony of the witnesses, forming a document of 115 pages.]
[Footnote 3214: Deposition of Alexis Bro, a volunteer, and three others.]
[Footnote 3215: Deposition of Pons, a merchant. After this devastation he is obliged to address a petition to the executive power, asking permission to remain in the town.]
[Footnote 3216: Deposition of Capdenet, a shoemaker.]
[Footnote 3217: Depositions of Marguerite Galzeng, wife of Guibal a miller, Pierre Canac and others.]
[Footnote 3218: Depositions of Martin, syndic-attorney of the commune of Brusque; Aussel, cure of Versol; Martial Aussel, vicar of Lapeyre and others.]
[Footnote 3219: Deposition of Anne Tourtoulon.]
[Footnote 3220: Depositions of Jeanne Tuffon, of Marianne Terral, of Marguerite Thomas, of Martin syndic-attorney of the commune of Brusque, of Virot, of Brassier, and othes. The details are too specific to allow quotation.]
[Footnote 3221: Depositions of Moursol, wool-carder; Louis Grand, district-administrator, and others.]
[Footnote 3222: For example, at Limoges, Aug. 16.—Cf. Louis Guibert, "le Parti Girondin dans la Haute-Vienne," p. 14.]
[Footnote 3223: Paris, "Histoire de Joseph Lebon," I. 60. Restoration of the Arras municipality. Joseph Lebon is proclaimed mayor Sept. 16.]
[Footnote 3224: For example, at Caen and at Carcassonne.]
[Footnote 3225: For example, at Toulon.]
[Footnote 3226: "Un sejour en France," 19, 29. ("Letters of a Wittness to the French Revolution," translated by H. Taine.1872)]
[Footnote 3227: Ibid., p. 38: 2M. de M—, who had served for thirty years gave up his arms to a boy who treated him with the greatest insolence."]
[Footnote 3228: Paris, Ibid., p. 55 and the following pages.—Albert Babeau, "Histoire de Troyes," I. 503-515.—Sausay, III. ch. I.]
[Footnote 3229: "The Ancient Regime," 381, 391, 392.]
[Footnote 3230: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3217. Letter of Castanet, an old gendarme, Aug. 21 1792.]
[Footnote 3231: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3219. Letter of M. Alquier to the first consul, Pluviose 18, year VIII.]
[Footnote 3232: Lauvergne, "Histoire du Var," p. 104.]
[Footnote 3233: Mortimer-Ternaux, III. 325, 327.]
[Footnote 3234: "Archives-Nationales," F7, 3271. Letter of the Minister of Justice, with official reports of the municipality of Rabastens. "The juge-de-paix of Rabastens was insulted in his place by putting an end to the proceedings commenced against an old deserter at the head of the municipality, and tried for robbery. They threatened to stab the judge if he recommenced the trial. Numerous gangs of vagabonds overrun the country, pillaging and putting to ransom all owners of property.. . The people has been led off by a municipal officer, a constitutional cure, and a brother of sieur Tournal, one of the authors of the evils which have desolated the Comtat." (March 5, 1792).]
[Footnote 3235: Guillon de Montleon, I. 84, 109, 139, 155, 158, 464.—Ibid., p.441, details concerning Chalier by his companion Chassagnon.—"Archives Nationales," F7, 3255. Letter by Laussel, Sept. 22, 1792.]
[Footnote 3236: Barbaroux, "Memoires," 85. Barbaroux is an eye-witness, for he has just returned to Marseilles and is about to preside over the electoral assembly of the Bouches-du-Rhone.]
[Footnote 3237: C. Rousset, "Les Volontaires," p. 67.—In his report of June 27, 1792, Albert Dubayet estimates the number of volunteers at 84,000.]
[Footnote 3238: C. Rousset, "Les Volontaires," 101. Letter of Kellermann, Aug.23, 1792.—"Un sejour en France," I. 347 and following pages.—"Archives Nationales," F7, 3214. Letter of an inhabitant of Nogent-le-Rotrou (Eure). "Out of 8,000 inhabitants one-half require assistance, and two-thirds of these are in a sad state, having scarcely straw enough to sleep on."(Dec. 3, 1792).—In his report of June 27, 1792, Albert Dubayet estimates the number of volunteers at 84,000.]
[Footnote 3239: C. Rousset, "Les Volontaires," 106 (Letter of General Biron, Aug. 23, 1792).—226, Letter of Vezu, major, July 24, 1793.]
[Footnote 3240: C. Rousset, "Les Volontaires," 144 (Letter of a district administrator of Moulins to General Custines, Jan. 27, 1793).—"Un sejour en France," p.27: "I am sorry to see that most the volunteers about to join the army are old men or very young boys."—C. Rousset, Ibid., 74, 108, 226 (Letter of Biron, Nov. 7, 1792); 105 (Letter of the commander of Fort Louis, Aug. 7); 127 (Letter of Captain Motme). One-third of the 2d battalion of Haute-Saone is composed of children 13 and 14 years old.]
[Footnote 3241: Moniteur, XIII. 742 (Sept. 21). Marshal Lueckner and his aids-de-camp just miss being killed by Parisian volunteers.—"Archives Nationales," BB, 16703. Letter by Labarriere aide-de-camp of General Flers, Antwerp, March 19, 1793. On the desertion en masse of gendarmes from Dumouriez's army, who return to Paris.]
[Footnote 3242: Cf. "L'armee et la garde nationale," by Baron Poisson, III. 475. "On hostilities being declared (April, 1792), the contingent of volunteers was fixed at 200,000 men. This second attempt resulted in nothing but confused and disorderly levies. Owing to the spinelessness of the volunteer troops it was impossible to continue the war in Belgium, which allowed the enemy to cross the frontier."—Gouverneur Morris, so well informed, had already written, under date of Dec.27, 1791: "The national guards, who have turned out as volunteers, are in many instances that corrupted scum of overgrown population of which large cities purge themselves, and which, without constitutions to support the fatigues... of war, have every vice and every disease which can render them the scourge of their friends and the laughing stock of their foes."—Buchez et Roux, XXVI. 177. Plan of the administrators of Herault, presented to the Convention April 27, 1793. "The composition of the enlistment should not be concealed. Most of those of which it is made up are not volunteers; they are not citizens all classes of society, who, submitting to draft on the ballot, have willingly made up their minds to go and defend the Republic. The larger part of the recruits are substitutes who, through the attraction of a large sum, have concluded to leave their homes."]
[Footnote 3243: C. Rousset, 47. Letter of the directory of Somme, Feb. 26, 1792.]
[Footnote 3244: "Archives Nationales," F 7, 3270. Deliberations of the council-general of the commune of Roye, Oct. 8, 1792 (in relation to the violence committed by two divisions of Parisian gendarmerie during their passage, Oct. 7 and 8).]
[Footnote 3245: Moore, I. 338 (Sept. 8, 1792).—(The Condes were proud princes from a branch of the royal house of Bourbon. (SR).]
[Footnote 3246: C Rousset, 189 (Letter of the Minister of War, dated at Dunkirk, April 29, 1793).—Archives Nationales," BB, 16, 703. (Parisian national guard staff major-general, order of the day, letter of citizen Ferat, commanding at Ostend, to the Minister of War, March 19, 1793): "Since we have had the gendarmes with us at Ostend there is nothing but disturbance every day. They attack the officers and volunteers, take the liberty of pulling off epaulettes and talk only of cutting and slashing, and declare that they recognize no superior being equals with everybody, and that they will do as they please. Those who are ordered to arrest them are chased and attacked with saber cuts and pistols]
[Footnote 3247: C. Rousset, 20 (Letter of General Wimpfen, Dec. 30, 1791).—"Souvenirs" of General Pelleport, pp.7 and 8.]
[Footnote 3248: C. Rousset, 45 (Report of General Wimpfen, Jan. 20, 1792).—Letter of General Biron, Aug. 23, 1792.]
[Footnote 3249: C. Rousset, 47, 48.—"Archives Nationales," F7, 3249. Official report of the municipality of Saint-Maxence, Jan. 21, 1792.—F 7, 3275. Official report of the municipality of Chatellerault, Dec. 27, 1791.—F7, 3285 and 3286—F7, 3213. Letter of Servan, Minister of War, to Roland, June 12, 1792: "I frequently receive, as well as yourself and the Minister of Justice, complaints against the national volunteers. They commit the most reprehensible offenses daily in places where they are quartered, and through which they pass on their way to their destination."—Ibid., Letter of Duranthon, Minister of Justice, May 5: "These occurrences are repeated, under more or less aggravating circumstances, in all the departments."]
[Footnote 3250: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3193. Official report of the commissaries of the department of Aveyron, April 4, 1792. "Among the pillagers and incendiaries of the chateaux of Privesac, Vaureilles, Pechins, and other threatened mansions, were a number of recruits who had already taken the road to Rhodez to join their respective regiments." Nothing remains of the chateau of Privesac but a heap of ruins. The houses in the village "are filled to over flowing with pillaged articles, and the inhabitants have divided the owners' animals amongst themselves."—Comte de Seilhac, "Scenes et portraits de la Revolution dans le bas Limousin," P.305. Pillage of the chateaux of Saint-Jeal and Seilhac, April 12, 1792, by the 3rd battalion of la Correze, commanded by Bellegarde, a former domestic in the chateau.]
[Footnote 3251: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3270. Deliberation of the council-general of the commune of Roye, Oct. 8, 1792 (passage of two divisions of Parisian gendarmes). "The inhabitants and municipal officers were by turns the sport of their insolence and brutality, constantly threatened in case of refusal with having their heads cut off, and seeing the said gendarmes, especially the gunners, with naked sabers in their hands, always threatening. The citizen mayor especially was treated most outrageously by the said gunners... forcing him to dance on the Place d'armes, to which they resorted with violins and where they remained until midnight, rudely pushing and hauling him about, treating him as an aristocrat, clapping the red cap on his head, with constant threats of cutting it off and that of every aristocrat in the town, a threat they swore to carry out the next day, openly stating, especially two or three amongst them, that they had massacred the Paris prisoners on the 2nd of September, and that it cost them nothing to massacre."]
[Footnote 3252: Summaries, in the order of their date or locality, and similar to those about to be placed before the reader, sometimes occur in these files. I pursue the same course as the clerk, in conformity with Roland's methodical habits.]
[Footnote 3253: Aug. 17, 1792 (Moniteur, XIII, 383, report of M. Emmery).]
[Footnote 3254: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3271. Letter of the administrators of Tarn, July 21.]
[Footnote 3255: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3234. Report of the municipal officers of Clairac, July 20.-Letter of the syndic-attorney of Lot-et-Garonne, Sept. 16.]
[Footnote 3256: Mercure de France, number for July 28, (letters from Bordeaux).]
[Footnote 3257: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3275. Letter of the administrators of Haute-Vienne, July 28 (with official reports).]
[Footnote 3258: '"Archives Nationales," F7, 3223. Letter of the directory of the district of Neuville to the department-administrators, Sept 18.]
[Footnote 3259: "Archives Nationales," report of the administrators of the department and council-general of the commune of Orleans, Sept 16 and 17. (The disarmament had been effected through the decrees of Aug.26 and Sept. 2.)]
[Footnote 3260: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3249. Letter of the lieutenant of the gendarmerie of Dampierre, Sept 23 (with official report dated Sept 19).]
[Footnote 3261: "Archives Nationales," draft of a letter by Roland, Oct 4, and others of the same kind.—Letter of the municipal officers of Ray, Sept 24.—Letter of M. Desdouits, proprietor, Sept 30.—Letter of the permanent council of Aigle, Oct 1, etc.]
[Footnote 3262: "Archives Nationales," Letter of the administrators of the Orne department, Sept 7.]
[Footnote 3263: Mortimer-Ternaux, III. 337 (Sept. 6).]
[Footnote 3264: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3265. Letter of the lieutenant-general of the gendarmerie, Aug. 30.—Official report of the Rouen municipality on the riot of Aug. 29.—Letters of the department-administrators, Sept 18 and Oct. 11.—Letter of the same, Oct 13, etc.—Letter of David, cultivator and department administrator Oct 11.]
[Footnote 3265: Albert Babean, "Letters of a deputy of the municipality of Troyes to the army of Dumuriez," p. 8.—(Sainte-Menehould, Sept. 7, 1792): "Our troops burn with a desire to meet the enemy. The massacre reported to have taken place in Paris does not discourage them; on the contrary, they are glad to know that suspected persons in the interior are got rid of."]
[Footnote 3266: Moore, I.338 (Sept. 4). At Clermont, the murder of a fish-dealer, killed for insulting the Breton volunteers.—401 (Sept. 7), the son of the post-master at Saint-Amand is killed on suspicion of communicating with the enemy.—"Archives Nationales," F7; 3249. Letter of the district-administrators of Senlis, Oct. 31 (Aug. 15). At Chantilly, M. Pigean is assassinated in the midst of 1,200 persons.—C. Rousset, p.84 (Sept. 21), lieutenant-colonel Imonnier is assassinated at Chalons-sur-Marne.—Mortimer-Ternaux, IV. 172. Four Prussian deserters are murdered at Rethel, Oct. 5, by the Parisian volunteers]
[Footnote 3267: Mortimer-Ternaux, III. 378, 594 and following pages.]
[Footnote 3268: Lacretelle, "Dix annees d'epreuves," p. 58. Description of Liancourt.—"Archives Nationales," F7, 3249. Letter of the department-administrators of the Eure, Sept. 11 (with official report of the Gisors municipality, Sept 4).—Mortimer-Ternaux, III. 550.]
[Footnote 3269: "Archives Nationales," F7, 4394. Letter of Roland to the convention, Oct. 31 (with a copy of the documents sent by the department of the Nord on the events of Oct. 10 and 11).]
[Footnote 3270: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3191. Official report of the municipality of Charleville; Sept. 4, and letter, Sept. 6.—Moniteur, XIII. 742, number for Sept. 21,1792 (letter of Sept. 17, On the Parisian volunteers of Marshal Lueckner's army). "The Parisian volunteers again threatened to have several heads last evening, among others those of the marshal and his aids. He had threatened to return some deserters to their regiments. At this the men exclaimed that the ancient regime no longer existed, that brothers should not be treated in that way, and that he general should be arrested. Several of them had already seized the horse's bridle."]
[Footnote 3271: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3185. Documents relating to the case of M. de Fosses. (The pillage takes place Sept. 4.)]
[Footnote 3272: Letter of Goulard, mayor of Coucy, Oct. 4.—Letter of Osselin, notary, Nov. 7. "Threats of setting fire to M. de Fosses' two remaining farm-houses are made."—Letter of M. de Fosses, Jan. 28, 1793. He states that he has entered no complaint, and if anybody has done so for him he is much displeased. "A suit might place me in the greatest danger, from my knowledge of the state of the public mind in Coucy, and of what the guilty have done and will do to affect the minds of the people in the seventeen communes concerned in the devastation."]
[Footnote 3273: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3249 letter of M. de Gouy to Roland, Sept. 21. (An admirable letter, which, if copied entire, would show the character of the gentleman of 1789. Lots of heart, many illusions and much verbosity.) The first attack was made Sept. 4 and the second on the 13th.]
[Footnote 3274: Most of the domiciliary visits end in similar damages. For example, ("Archives Nationales," F7, 3265, letter of the administrators of Seine-Inferieure, Sept. 18, 1792). Visit to the chateau de Catteville, Sept. 7, by the national guard of the neighborhood. "The national guard get drunk, break the furniture to pieces, and fire repeated volleys at the windows and mirrors; the chateau is a complete ruin." The municipal officers on attempting to interfere are nearly killed.]
[Footnote 3275: The letter ends with the following: "No, never will I abandon the French soil!" He is guillotined at Paris, Thermidor 5, year II., as an accomplice in the pretended prison-plot.]
[Footnote 3276: Raid on Protestants under Louis XIV. (SR).]
[Footnote 3277: '"Archives Nationales," Letter of the Oise administrators, Sept. 12 and 15.—Letter of the syndic-attorney of the department, Sept. 23.—Letter of the administrators, Sept. 20 (on Chantilly). "The vast treasures of this domain are being plundered." In the forest of Hez and in the park belonging to M. de Fitz-James, now national property, "the finest trees are sold on the spot, cut down, and carried off."—F7, 3268, Letter of the overseer of the national domains at Rambouillet, Oct. 31. Woods devastated "at a loss of more than 100,000 crowns since August 10."—"The agitators who preach liberty to citizens in the rural districts are the very ones who excite the disorders with which the country is menaced. They provoke the demand for a partition of property, with all the accompanying threats."]
[Footnote 3278: Albert Babeau, I.504 (Aug.20).]
[Footnote 3279: Mortimer-Ternaux, III. 322 (Sept 4).]
[Footnote 3280: Mortimer-Ternaux, III.325.—"Archives Nationales," F7, 3239. Official report of the municipality of Rheims, Sept 6.]
[Footnote 3281: "Archives Nationales," F7, 4394. Correspondence of the ministers in 1792 and 1793. Lists presented by Roland to the convention, on the part of various districts and departments, containing the names of priests demanding passports to go abroad, those who have gone without passports, and of sick or aged priests in the department asylums.]
[Footnote 3282: Albert Babeau, I. 515-517. Guillon de Montleon, I. 120. At Lyons after the 10th of August the unsworn conceal themselves; the municipality offers them passports; many who come for them are incarcerated; others receive a passport with a mark on it which serves for their recognition on the road, and which excites against them the fury of the volunteers. "A majority of the soldiers filled the air with their cries of 'Death to kings and priests!' "—Sauzay, III. ch. IX., and especially p. 193: "M. Pescheu; while running along the road from Belfort to Porentruy, is seen by a captain of the volunteers, riding along the same road with other officers; demanding his gun, he aimed at M. Pescheur and shot him."]
[Footnote 3283: "Histoire de Chalons-sur-Marne et de ses monuments," by L. Barbat, pp. 420, 425]
[Footnote 3284: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3207. Letter of the directory of the Cote d'Or, Aug. 28 and Sept. 26. Address of the Beaune municipality, Sept. 2. Letter of M. Jean Sallier, Oct. 9: "Allow me to appeal to you for justice and to interest yourself in behalf of my brother, myself, and five servants, who on the 14th of September last, at the order of the municipality of La Roche-en-Bressy, where we have lived for three years, were arrested by the national guard of Saulieu, and, first imprisoned here in this town, were on the 18th transferred to Semur, no reason for our detention being given, and where we have in vain demanded a trial from the directory of the district, which body, making no examination or inquiry into our case, sent us on the 25th, at great expense, to Dijon, where the department has imprisoned us again without, as before, giving any reason therefore."—The directory of the department writes "the communes of the towns and of the country arrest persons suspected by them, and instead of caring for these themselves, send them to the district"—Such arbitrary imprisonment multiply towards the end of 1792 and early in 1793. The commissaries of the convention arrest at Sedan 55 persons in one day: at Nancy, 104 in three weeks; at Arras, more than 1,000 in two months; in the Jura, 4,000 in two months. At Lons-le-Saulnier all the nobles with their domestics, at Aix all the inhabitants of one quarter without exception are put in prison. (De Sybel, II. 305.)]
[Footnote 3285:"Archives Nationales," F7, 3276. Letters of the administrators of the Yonne, Aug. 20 and 21.-Ibid., F7, 3255. Letter of the commissary, Bonnemant, Sept. 22.—Mortimer-Ternaux, III. 338.—Lavalette, "Memoires," I.100.]
[Footnote 3286: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3,255. Letter of the district administrator of Roanne, Aug. 18. Fourteen volunteers of the canton of Neronde betake themselves to Chenevoux, a mansion belonging to M. Dulieu, a supposed emigre. They exact 200 francs from the keeper of' the funds of the house under penalty of death, which he gives them.—Letter of the same. Sept. 1. "Every day repressive means are non-existent. Juges-de-paix before whom complaints are made dare not report them, nor try citizens who cause themselves to be feared. Witnesses dare not give testimony for fear of being maltreated or pillaged by the criminals."—Letter of the same, Aug. 22.—Official report of the municipality of Charlieu, Sept. 9, on the destruction of the land registry books. "We replied that not having the force with which to oppose them, since they themselves were the force, we would abstain."—Letter of an officer of the gendarmerie, Sept.9, etc.]
[Footnote 3287: "Lettres autographes de Madame Roland," published by Madame Bancal des Issarts, p. 5 (June 2, 1790)]
[Footnote 3288: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3245.—Letter of the mayor and municipal officers of Lyons, Aug. 2.—Letter of the deputy procureur of the commune, Aug. 29.—Copy of a letter by Dodieu, Aug. 27. (Roland replies with consternation and says that there must be a prosecution.)—Official report of the 9th of September, and letter of the municipality, Sept. 11.—Memorandum of the officers of the Royal-Pologne regiment, Sept. 7.—Letter of M. Perigny, father-in-law of one of the officers slain, Sept. 19.—Mortimer-Ternaux, III. 342.—Guillon de Montleon, I. 124.—Balleyder, "Histoire du peuple de Lyon," 91.]
[Footnote 3289: "Archives Nationales," Letter of Danton, Oct. 3.]
[Footnote 3290: Decius, Roman emperor from 248 to 251 famous for having persecuted the Christians. He was unable to tolerate their refusal to join in communal corporate pagan observances. He insisted that they do so and once they had done it, a Certificate of Sacrifice (libellus), was issued. (SR).]
[Footnote 3291: "Etude sur Madame Roland," by Dauban, 82. Letter of Madame Roland to Bosc, July 26, 1798. "You busy yourselves with a municipality and allow heads to escape which will devise new horrors. You are mere children; your enthusiasm is merely a straw bonfire! If the National Assembly does not try two illustrious heads in regular form or some generous Decius strike them down, you are all lost.—" Ibid.,, May 17, 1790: "Our rural districts are much dissatisfied with the decree on feudal privileges... A reform is necessary, in which more chateaux must be burnt. It would not be a serious evil were there not some danger of the enemies of the Revolution profiting by these discontents to lessen the confidence of the people in the National Assembly."—Sept. 27, 1790. "The worst party is successful; it is forgotten that insurrection is the most sacred of duties when the country is in danger."—Jan.24, 1791. "The wise man shuts his eyes to the grievances or weaknesses of the private individual; but the citizen should show no mercy, even to his father, when the public welfare is at stake."]
[Footnote 3292: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3202. Report of the commissary, member of the Cantal directory, Oct. 24. On the 16th of October at Chaudesaigues the volunteers break open a door and then kill one of their comrades who opposes them, whom the commissary tries to save. The mayor of the place, in uniform, leads them to the dwellings of aristocrats, urging them on to pillage; they enter a number of houses by force and exact wine. The next day at Saint-Urcize they break into the house of the former cure, devastate or pillage it, and "sell his furniture to different persons in the neighborhood." The same treatment is awarded to sieur Vaissier, mayor, and to lady Lavalette; their cellars are forced open, barrels of wine are taken to the public square, and drinking takes place from the tap. After this "the volunteers go in squads into the neighboring parishes and compel the inhabitants to give them money or effects." The commissary and municipal officers of St. Urcize who tried to mediate were nearly killed and were saved only through the efforts of a detachment of regular cavalry. As to the Jacobin mayor of Chaudesaigues, it was natural that he should preach pillage; on the sale of the effects of the nuns "he kept all bidders away, and had things knocked down to him for almost nothing."]
[Footnote 3293: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3217. Letter or Castanet, an old gendarme, Nimes, Aug.21.—Letter of M. Griolet, syndic-attorney of the Gard, Sept. 8: "I beg, sir, that this letter may be considered as confidential; I pray you do not compromise me. "—Letter of M. Gilles, juge-de-paix at Rocquemaure, Oct.31 (with official reports).]
[Footnote 3294: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3227. Letter of the municipal officers of Tullins, Sept. 8.]
[Footnote 3295: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3190. Letter of Danton, Oct. 9.—Memorandum of M. Casimir Audiffret (with documents in support of it). His son had been locked up by mistake, instead of another Audiffret, belonging to the Comtat; he was slashed with a saber in prison Aug.25. Report of the surgeon, Oct. 17: "The wounded man has two gashes more on the head, one on the left cheek and the right leg is paralyzed; he has been so roughly treated in carrying him from prison to prison as to bring on an abscess on the wrist; if he is kept there he will soon die."]
[Footnote 3296: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3195. Letter of M. Amiel, president of the bureau of conciliation, Oct. 28.—Letter of an inhabitant of Avignon, Oct. 7.—Other letters without signatures.—Letter of M. Gilles, juge-de-paix, Jan. 23, 1793.]
[Footnote 3297: Fabre, "Histoire de Marseilles," II. 478 and following pages.—"Archives Nationales," F7, 3195. Letter of the Minister of Justice, M. de Joly (with supporting documents), Aug. 6.—Official reports of the Marseilles municipality, July 21, 22, 23.—Official report of the municipality of Aix, Aug. 24.—Letter of the syndic-attorney of the department (with a letter of the municipality of Aubagne), Sept. 22, etc., in which M. Jourdan, a ministerial officer, is accused of "aristocracy." A guard is assigned to him. About midnight the guard is overcome, he is carried off, and then killed in spite of the entreaties of his wife and son. The letter of the municipality ends with the following: "Their lamentations pierced our hearts. But, alas, who can resist the French people when aroused? We remain, gentlemen, very cordially yours, the municipal officers of Aubagne."]
[Footnote 3298: This stage of revolution seems to be sought after by the secret communist revolutionaries arranging for the break-up of formerly powerful independent states such as Germany, Yougoslavia, India etc. (SR).]
[Footnote 3299: Moniteur, XIII. 560. Act passed by the administrators of the Bouches-du-Rhone, Aug. 3, "forbidding special collectors from henceforth paying taxes with the national treasury."—Ibid., 744. A report by Roland. The department of Var, having called a meeting of commissaries at Avignon to provide for the defense of these regions, the Minister says: "This step, subversive of all government, nullifies the general regulations of the executive power."—"Archives Nationales," F7, 3195. Deliberation of the three administrative bodies assembled at Marseilles, Nov. 5, 1792.—Petition of Anselme, a citizen of Avignon, residing in Paris, Dec. 14.—Report of the Saint-Remy affair, etc.]
[Footnote 32100: "Archives Nationales," CII. I. 32. Official Report of the Electoral Assembly of Bouches-du-Rhone, Sept. 4. "To defray the expenses of this expenditure the syndic-attorney of the district of Tarascon is authorized to draw upon the funds of public registry and vendor of revenue stamps, and in addition thereto on the collector of direct taxation. The expenses of this expedition will be borne by the anti-revolutionary agitators who have made it necessary. A list, therefore, is to be drawn up and sent to the National Assembly. The commissioners will be empowered to suspend the district administrations, municipal officers, and generally all public functionaries who, through incivism or improper conduct, shall have endangered the public weal. They may even arrest them as well as suspected citizens. They will see that the law regarding the disarming of suspected citizens and the banishment of priests be faithfully executed."—Ibid., F7, 3195. Letter of Truchement, commissary of the department, Nov. 15.—Memorandum of the community of Eyguieres and letter of the municipality of Eyguieres, Sept. 13.—Letter of M. Jaubert, secretary of the Salon popular club, Oct. 22: "The department of Bouches-du-Rhone has for a month past been ravaged by commissions. .. The despotism of one is abolished, and we now stagger under the much more burdensome yoke of a crowd of despots."—Situation of the department in September and October, 1792 (with supporting documents).]
[Footnote 32101: Barbaroux, "Memoires," 89.]
[Footnote 32102: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3196.—Letters and petition of citizen de Sades, Nov., 1792, Feb.17, 1793, and Ventose 8, year III.: "Towards the middle of Sept., 1792 (old style), some Marseilles brigands broke into a house of mine near Apt. Not content with carrying away six loads of furniture.. they broke the mirrors and wood-work." The damage is estimated at 80,000 francs. Report of the executive council according to the official statement of the municipality of Coste. On the 27th of September Montbrion, commissioner of the administration of the Bouche-du-Rhone, sends two messengers to fetch the furniture to Apt. On reaching Apt Montbrion and his colleague Bergier have the vehicles unloaded, putting the most valuable effects on one cart, which they appropriate to themselves, and drive away with it to some distance out of sight, paying the driver out of their own pockets: "No doubt whatever exists as to the knavery of Montbrion and Bergier; administrators and commissioners of the administration of the department."—De Sades, the author of "Justine," pleads his well-known civism and the ultra-revolutionary petitions drawn up by him in the name of the section of the Pikes.]
[Footnote 32103: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3272. Read in this file the entire correspondence of the directory and the public prosecutor.]
[Footnote 32104: Deliberation of the commune of Toulon. July 28 and following days.—That of the three administrative bodies, Sep. 10—Lauvergne, "Histoire du department du Var," 104-137.]
[Footnote 32105: "Memoires" of Chancelier Pasquier. Vol. I. p. 106. Librarie Plon, Paris 1893—Pasquier and his wife stopped in Picardy, brought to Paris by a member of the commune, a small, bandy-legged fellow formerly a chair-letter in his parish church, imbued with the doctrines of the day and a determined leveler. At the village of Saralles they passed the house of M. de Livry, a rich man enjoying an income of 50,000 francs, and the lover of Saunier, an opera-dancer. "He is a good fellow," exclaims Pasquier's bandy-legged guardian: "we have just made hint marry. Look here, we said to him, it is time that to put a stop to that behavior! Down with prejudice! Marquises and dancers ought to marry each other. He made her his wife, and it is well he did; otherwise he would have been done for a long time ago, or caged behind the Luxembourg walls."—Elsewhere, on passing a chateau being demolished, the former chair-letter quotes Rousseau: "For every chateau that falls, twenty cottages rise in its place." His mind was stored with similar phrases and tirades, uttered by him as the occasion warranted. This man may be considered as an excellent specimen of the average Jacobin.]
[Footnote 32106: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3,207. Letter of the administrators of the Cote d'Or to the Minister, Oct. 6, 1792.]
[Footnote 32107: "Archives Nationales" F7, 3195. Letter of the administrators of the Bouche-du-Rhone, Oct 29, and the Minister's answer on the margin.]
[Footnote 32108: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3249. Letter of the administrators of the Orne, Sept. 7, and the Minister's reply noted on the margin.]
[Footnote 32109: "Archives Nationales," F', 3,249. Correspondence with the municipality of Saint-Firmin (Oise). Letter of Roland, Dec. 3: "I have read the letter addressed to me on the 25th of the past month, and I cannot conceal from you the pain it gives me to find in it principles so destructive of all the ties of subordination existing between constituted authorities, principles so erroneous that should the communes adopt them every form of government would be impossible and all society broken up. Can the commune of Saint-Firmin, indeed, have persuaded itself that it is sovereign, as the letter states? and have the citizens composing it forgotten that the sovereign is the entire nation, and not the forty-four thousandth part of it? that Saint-Firmin is simply a fraction of it, contributing its share to endowing the deputies of the National Convention, the administrators of departments and districts with the power of acting for the greatest advantage of the commune, but which, the moment it elects its own administrators and agents, can no longer revoke the powers it has bestowed, without a total subversion of order? etc."—All the documents belonging to this affair ought to be quoted; there is nothing more instructive or ludicrous, and especially the style of the secretary-clerk of Saint-Firmin: "We conjure you to remember that the administrators of the district of Senlis strive to play the part of the sirens who sought to enchant Ulysses."]
[Footnote 32110: Letter of the central bureau of the Rouen sections, Aug. 30.]
[Footnote 32111: "Archives Nationales," F7, 3195. Letter of the three administrative bodies and commissaries of the sections of Marseilles, Nov. 15, 1792. Letter of the electors of Bouches-du-Rhone, Nov. 28.—(Forms of politeness are omitted at the end of these letters, and no doubt purposely.) Roland replies (Dec. 31): "While fully admiring the civism of the brave Marseilles people,... do not fully agree with you on the exercise of popular Sovereignty." He ends by stating that all their letters with replies have been transmitted to the deputies of the Bouches-du-Rhone, and that the latter are in accord with him and will arrange matters.]
I.—The second stage of the Jacobin conquest.
The importance and multitude of vacant offices.
The second stage of the Jacobin conquest will, after August 10th and during the next three months, extend and multiply all vacancies from the top to the bottom of the hierarchy, for the purpose of filling them with their own men.—In the first place, the faction (the party) installs representatives on the summits of public authority which represent itself alone, seven hundred and forty-nine omnipotent deputies, in a Convention which, curbed neither by collateral powers nor by a previously established constitution, disposes at pleasure of the property, the lives and the consciences of all French people.—Then, through this barely installed convention, it decrees the complete renewal of all administrative and judicial bodies, councils and directories of departments, councils and communal municipalities, civil, criminal and commercial tribunals, justices and their assistants in the lower courts, deputies of the justices, national commissaries of the civil courts, with secretaries and bailiffs belonging to the various tribunals and administrations. The obligation of having practiced as a lawyer is abolished by the same stroke, so that the first comer, if he belongs to the club (party) may become a judge without knowing how to write, and even without being able to read.—Just before this the staff of the National Guard, in all towns above fifty thousand souls, and afterwards in all the towns on the frontier, has again passed through the electoral sieve. In like manner, the officers of the gendarmerie at Paris and throughout France once more undergo an election by their men. Finally, all post-masters and post-office comptrollers have to submit to election.—Even better, below or alongside the elected officials, this administrative purge concerns all non-elective functionaries and employees, no matter how insignificant their service, however feeble and indirect their office may be connected with political matters. This is because tax receivers and assessors, directors and other agents of rivers and forests, engineers, notaries, attorneys, clerks and scribes belonging to the administrative branch, are all subject to dismissal if they do not obtain a certificate of civism from their municipality. At Troyes, out of fifteen notaries, it is refused to four, which leaves four places to be filled by their Jacobin clerks. At Paris, "all honest folks, all clerks who are educated," are driven out of the navy offices; the war department is getting to be "a den where everybody on duty wears a red cap, where all thee-and-thou each other, even the Minister, where four hundred employees, among which are a number of women, show off in the dirtiest dress, affect the coolest cynicism, do nothing, and steal on all sides."—Under the denunciation of the clubs, the broom is applied even at the bottom of the hierarchical scale, even to secretaries of village councils, to messengers and call-boys in the towns, to jail-keepers and door-keepers, to beadles and sextons, to foresters, field-custodians, and others of this class. All these persons must be, or appear to be, Jacobin; otherwise, their place slips away from them, for there is always some one to covet it, apply for it and take it.—Outside of employees the sweeping operation reaches the suppliers and contractors; even here there are the faithful to be provided for, and nowhere is the bait so important. The State, even in ordinary times, is always the largest of consumers, and, at this moment, it is expending monthly, merely on the war, two hundred millions extra. What fish may be caught in such disturbed waters!—All these lucrative orders as well as all these remunerated positions are at the disposition of the Jacobins, and they seize the opportunity; they are the lawful owner, who comes home after a long absence and gives or withdraws his custom as the pleases, while he makes a clean sweep in his own household.—The administrative and judicial services alone number 1,300,000 places, all those in the treasury department, in that of public works, in that of public education, and in the Church; all posts in the National Guard and in the army, from that of commander-in-chief down to a drummer; the whole of the central or local power, with the vast patronage flowing from this. Never had such rich spoils been made available to the general public in one go. Lots will be drawn, apparently, by vote; but it is evident that the Jacobins have no intention of surrendering their prey to the hazards of a free ballot; they mean to keep it the way they got it; by force, and will leave no stone unturned to control the elections.
The young and the poor invited to the ballot-box.—Danger of the Conservatives if candidates.—Their chiefs absent themselves.—Proportion of absentees at the primary assemblies.
They begin by paving their way. A new decree has at once suppressed the feeble and last legal requirement for impartiality, integrity and competence of the elector and the eligible candidate. No more discrimination between active and passive citizens; no longer any difference between poll tax of an elector of the first degree and that of the second degree: no electoral poll tax qualification whatever. All Frenchmen, except domestics, of whom they are distrustful, supposing them under their employer's influence, may vote at the primary assemblies, and not longer at the age of twenty-five, but at twenty-one, which brings to the polls the two most revolutionary groups, on the one hand the young, and on the other the poor, the latter in great numbers in these times of unemployment, dearth and poverty, amounting in all to two millions and a half, and, perhaps, three millions of new electors.—At Besancon the number of the registered voters is doubled.—Thus are the usual clients of the Jacobins admitted within the electoral boundaries, from which they had hitherto been excluded, and, to ensure their coming, their leaders decide that every elector obliged to travel "shall receive twenty sous mileage," besides "three francs per diem during his stay."
While attracting their supporters they drove their adversaries away. The political banditry, through which they dominate and terrify France, has already taken care of that. Many arbitrary arrests and unpunished murders are a warning to all candidates who do not belong to their party; and I do not speak about to the nobles or friends of the ancient regime that have fled or are in prison, but the Constitutionalists and the Feuillants. Any electoral enterprise on their part would be madness, almost a suicide. Accordingly, none of them call attention to themselves. If any outrageous moderate, like Durand de Maillane, appears on a list, it is because the revolutionaries have adopted him without knowing him, and because he swears that he hates royalty. The others, more honest, do not want to don the popular livery and resort to club patronage, so they carefully stay away; they know too well that to do otherwise would mark their heads for pikes and their homes for pillage. At the very moment of depositing the vote the domains of several deputies are sacked simply because, "on the comparative lists of seven calls by name," sent to the departments from Paris by the Jacobins, their names are found on the right.—Through an excess of precaution the Constitutionalists of the Legislative body are kept at the capital, their passports being refused to them to prevent them from returning into the provinces and obtaining votes by publicly stating the truth in relation to the recent revolution.—In the same way, all conservative journals are suppressed, reduced to silence, or compelled to become turncoats.—Now, when one has neither the possibility to speak up nor a candidate which might become one's representative, of what use is it to vote? And especially, since the primary assemblies are places of disorder and violence, patriots alone, in many places, being admitted, a conservative being "insulted and overwhelmed with numbers," and, if he utters an opinion, exposed to danger, also, if he remains silent, incurring the risk of denunciations, threats, and blows. To keep in the background, remain on the sidelines, avoid being seen, and to strive to be forgotten, is the rule under a pasha, and especially when this pasha is a mob. Hence the absenteeism of the majority; around the ballot-box there is an enormous void. At Paris, in the election of mayor and municipal officers, the balloting of October, November and December collect together only 14,000 out of 160,000 registered voters, later 10,000, and, later again, only 7,000. At Besancon, 7,000. registered voters result in less than 600; there is the same proportion in other towns, as for example, in Troyes. In like manner, in the rural cantons, east of Doubs and west of Loire-Inferieure, but one-tenth of the electors dare exercise their right to vote. The electoral source is so exhausted, so often disturbed, and so stopped up as to be almost dry: in these primary assemblies which, directly or indirectly, delegate all public powers, and which, in the expression of the common will, should be full, there are lacking six millions three hundred thousands electors out of seven millions.
III.—Composition and tone of the secondary assemblies.
Exclusion of "Feuillant" electors.—Pressure on other electors.—Persons elected by the conservatives obliged to resign.—Elections by the Catholics canceled.—Secession of the Jacobin minorities.—The election of their men made valid.—Public opinion not in accord with official selections.
Through this anticipated purge the assemblies of the first degree find themselves, for the most part, Jacobin; consequently the electors of the second degree, appointed by them, are for the most part, Jacobin; in many departments, their assembly becomes the most anarchical, the most turbulent, and the most usurping of all the clubs. Here there is only shouting, denunciations, oath-taking, incendiary motions, cheering which carry all questions, furious speeches by Parisian commissaries, by delegates from the local club, by passing Federates, and by female wretches demanding arms. The Pas-de-Calais assemblage sets free and applauds a woman imprisoned for having beaten a drum in a mob. The Paris assembly fraternizes with the Versailles slaughterers and the assassins of the mayor of Etampes. The assembly of the Bouches-du-Rhone gives a certificate o virtue to Jourdan, the Glaciere murderer. The assembly of Seine-et-Marne applauds the proposal to cast a cannon which might contain the head of Louis XVI. for a cannon-ball to be fired at the enemy.—It is not surprising that an electoral body without self-respect should respect nothing, and practice self-mutilation under the pretext of purification. The object of the despotic majority was to reign at once, without any contest, on its own authority, and to expel all offensive electors. At Paris, in the Aisne, in Haute-Loire, in Ille-et-Vilaine, in Maine-et-Loire, it excludes as unworthy the members of old Feuillants and monarchical clubs, and the signers of Constitutionalist protests. In Herault it cancels the elections in the canton of Servian, because the elected men, it says, are "mad aristocrats." In Orne it drives away an old Constituent, Goupil de Prefeln, because he voted for the revision, also, his son-in-law, because he is his son-in-law. In the Bouches-du-Rhone, where the canton of Seignon, by mistake or through routine, swore "to maintain the constitution of the kingdom," it sets aside these retrograde elected representatives, commences proceedings against the "crime committed," and sends troops against Noves because the Noves elector, a justice who is denounced and in peril, has escaped from the electoral den.—After the purification of persons it proceeds to the purification of sentiments. At Paris, and in at least nine departments, and in contempt of the law, is suppresses the secret ballot, the last refuge of timid conservatives, and imposes on each elector a verbal public vote, loud and clear, on his name being called; that is to say, if he does not vote as he ought to, he risks the gallows. Nothing could more surely convert hesitation and indecision into good sense, while, in many a place, still more powerful machinery is violently opposed to the elections. At Paris the elections are carried on in the midst of atrocities, under the pikes of the butchers, and con ducted by their instigators. At Meaux and at Rheims the electors in session were within hearing of the screeches of the murdered priests. At Rheims the butchers themselves ordered the electoral assembly to elect their candidates, Drouet, the famous post-master, and Armonville, a tipsy wool-carder, upon which one-half of the assembly withdrew, while the two candidates of the assassins are elected. At Lyons, two days after the massacre, the Jacobin commander writes to the Minister: "Yesterday's catastrophe puts the aristocrats to flight, and ensures us the majority in Lyons." From universal suffrage thus subjected to so much sifting, submitted to such heavy pressure, heated and refined in the revolutionary alembic, those who control it obtain all they want, a concentrated extract, the quintessence of the Jacobin spirit.
And yet, should this extract not seem to them sufficiently strong, wherever they are sovereign, they throw it away and begin over again. At Paris, by means of a purifying and surplus ballot, the new Council of the Commune undertakes the expulsion of its lukewarm members, while d'Ormesson, the mayor elect of the moderates, is assailed with so many threats that, on the verge of his installation, he resigns. At Lyons, another moderate, Niviere-Chol, twice elected, and, by 9,000 out of 11,000 votes, is twice compelled to abandon his place; after him, Gilibert, the physician, who, supported by the same voters, is about to obtain the majority, is seized suddenly and cast into prison; even in prison, he is elected; the clubbists confine him there more rigidly, and do not let him out even after extorting his resignation.—Elsewhere in the rural cantons, for example, in Franche-Comte, a number of elections are canceled when the person elected happens to be a Catholic. The Jacobin minority frequently secede, meet in a tavern, elect their mayor or justice of the peace, and the validity of his election is secured because he is a patriot; so much the worse for that of the majority, whose more numerous votes are null because given by "fanatics."—The response of universal suffrage thus appealed to cannot be other than that which is framed for it. Indisputable facts are to show to what extent this response is compulsive or perverted, what a distance there is between an official choice and public opinion, how the elections give a contrary meaning to popular sentiment. The departments of Deux-Sevres, Maine-et-Loire, la Vendee, Loire-Inferieure, Morbihan, and Finistere, send only anti-Catholic republicans to the Convention, while these same departments are to become the inexhaustible nursery of the great catholic and royalist insurrection. Three regicides out of four deputies represent Lozere, where, six months later, thirty thousand peasants are to march under the Royal white banner. Six regicides out of nine deputies represent la Vendee, which is going to rise from one end of it to the other in the name of the King.
IV.—Composition of the National Convention.
Number of Montagnards at the start.—Opinions and sentiments of the deputies of the Plain.—The Gironde.—Ascendancy of the Girondins in the Convention.—Their intellectual character.—Their principles.—The plan of their Constitution.—Their fanaticism.—Their sincerity, culture and tastes.—How they differ from pure Jacobins.—How they comprehend popular sovereignty.—Their stipulations with regard to the initiative of individuals and of groups.— Weakness of philosophic thought and of parliamentary authority in times of anarchy.
However vigorous the electoral pressure may have been, the voting machine has not provided the expected results. At the opening of the session, out of 749 deputies, only about fifty are found to approve of the Commune, nearly all of the elected in places where, as at Rheims and Paris, terror has the elector by the throat, "under the clubs, axes, daggers, and bludgeons of the butchers." But where the physical impressions of murder have not been so tangible and impressive, some sense of decency has prevented too glaring elections. The inclination to vote for well-known names could not wholly be arrested; seventy-seven former members of the Constituent Assembly, and one hundred and eighty-six of the previous Legislative Assembly enter the Convention, and the practical knowledge which many of these have of government business has given them some insights. In short, the consciences of six hundred and fifty deputies are only in part perverted.
They are all, unquestionably, decided republicans, enemies of tradition, apostles of reason, and trained in deductive politics; only on these conditions could they be elected. Every candidate is supposed to possess the Jacobin faith, or, at least, to recite the revolutionary creed. The Convention, consequently, at its opening session votes unanimously, with cheers and enthusiasm, the abolition of royalty, and three months later it pronounces, by a large majority, Louis XVI.,
"guilty of conspiring against the liberty of the nation, and of assaults on the general welfare of the State."
Nevertheless, social habitudes still subsist under political prejudices. A man who is born in and lives for a long time in an old community, is, through this alone, marked with its imprint; the customs to which he conforms have crystallized in him in the shape of sentiments: if it is well-regulated and civilized, he has involuntarily arrived at respect for property and for human life, and, in most characters, this respect has taken very deep root. A theory, even if adopted, does not wholly succeed in destroying this respect; only in rare instances is it successful, when it encounters coarse and defective natures; to take full hold, it is necessary that it should fall on the scattered inheritors of former destructive appetites, on those hopelessly degenerate souls in which the passions of an anterior date are slumbering; then only does its malevolence fully appear, for it rouses the ferocious or plundering instincts of the barbarian, the raider, the inquisitor, and the pasha. On the contrary, with the greatest number, do what it will, integrity and humanity always remain powerful motives. Nearly all these legislators, who originate in the middle class, are at bottom, irrespective of a momentary delusion, what they always have been up to now, advocates, attorneys, merchants, priests, or physicians of the ancient regime, and what they will become later on, docile administrators or zealous functionaries of Napoleon's empire, that is to say, ordinary civilized persons belonging to the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, sufficiently honest in private life to have a desire to be equally so in public life.—Hence their horror of anarchy, of Marat, and of the September butchers and robbers. Three days after their assembling together they vote, "almost unanimously," the preparation of a law "against the instigators of murder and assassination." "Almost unanimously," they desire to raise a guard, recruited in the 83 departments, against the armed bands of Paris and the Commune. Petition is elected as their first president by "almost the totality of suffrages." Roland who has just read his report to them, is greeted with the "loudest" applause from nearly the "entire" Assembly. In short they are for the ideal republic against actual brigands. This accounts for their ranging themselves around those upright and sincere deputies, who, in the two preceding Assemblies or alongside of them, were the ablest defenders of both principles and humanity, around Buzot, Lanjuinais, Petition, and Rabaut-Saint-Etienne; around Brissot, Vergniaud, Guadet, Gensonne, Isnard, and Condorcet; around Roland, Louvet, Barbaroux, and the five hundred deputies of the "Plain," marching in one body under the leadership of the 180 Girondists who now form the "Right."
These latter, among the republicans, are the most sincere and have the most faith; for they have long been such, after much thought, study and as a matter of principle. Nearly all of them are well-read educated men, reasoners, philosophers, disciples of Diderot or of Rousseau, satisfied that absolute truth had been revealed by their masters, thoroughly imbued with the Encyclopedie or the Contrat Social, the same as the Puritans formerly were with the Bible. At the age when the mind is maturing, and fondly clings to general ideas, they embraced the theory and aimed at a reconstruction of society according to abstract principles. They have accordingly set to work as pure logicians, rigorously applying the superficial and false system of analysis then in vogue. They have formed for themselves an idea of man in general, the same in all times and ages, an extract or minimum of man; they have pondered over several thousands of or millions of these abstract mortals, erected their imaginary wills into primordial rights, and drawn up in anticipation the chimerical contract which is to regulate their impossible union. There are to be no more privileges, no more heredity, no qualifications of any kind; all are to be electors, all eligible and all of equal members of the sovereignty; all powers are to be of short date, and conferred through election; there must be but one assembly, elected and entirely renewed annually, one executive council elected and one-half renewed annually, a national treasury-board elected and one-third renewed annually; all local administrations and tribunals must be elected; a referendum to the people, the electoral body endowed with the initiative, a constant appeal to the sovereignty, which, always consulted and always active, will manifest its will not alone by the choice of its mandatories but, again, through "the censure" which it will apply to the laws—such is the Constitution they forge for themselves. "The English Constitution," says Condorcet, "is made for the rich, that of America for citizens well-off; the French Constitution should be made for all men."—It is, for this reason, the only legitimate one; every institution that deviates from it is opposed to natural rights and, therefore, fit only to be put down.-This is what the Girondists have done during the Legislative sessions; we know how they, armed with the illusions of their new philosophy and triumphing through a rigid, rash and hasty reason, have
* persecuted Catholic consciences,
* violated feudal property,
* encroached on the legal authority of the King,
* persecuted the remains of the ancient regime,
* tolerated crimes committed by the crowds,
* even plunged France into an European war,
* armed even the paupers,
* caused the overthrow of all government.—
As far as his Utopia is concerned, the Girondist is a sectarian, and he knows no scruples.
* Little does he care that nine out of ten electors do not vote: he regards himself as the authorized representative of all ten.
* Little does he care whether the great majority of Frenchmen favor the Constitution of 1791; it is his business to impose on them his own.
* Little does he care whether his former opponents, King, emigres, unsworn ecclesiastics, are honorable men or at least excusable; he will launch against them every rigorous legal proceeding, transportation, confiscation, civil death and physical death.
In his own eyes he is the justiciary, and his investiture is bestowed upon him by eternal right. There is no human infatuation so pernicious to man as that of absolute right; nothing is better calculated for the destruction in him of the hereditary accumulation of moral conceptions.—Within the narrow bounds of their creed, however, the Girondins are sincere and consistent. They are masters of their formulae; they know how to deduce consequences from them; they believe in them the same as a surveyor in his theorems, and a theologian in the articles of his faith; they are anxious to apply them, to devise a constitution, to establish a regular government, to emerge from a barbarous state, to put an end to fighting in the street, to pillaging, to murders, to the sway of brutal force and of naked arms.
The disorder, mover, so repugnant to them as logicians is still more repugnant to them as cultivated, polished men. They have a sense of what is proper, of becoming ways, and their tastes are even refined. They are not familiar with, nor do they desire to imitate, the rude manners of Danton, his coarse language, his oaths, and his low associations with the people. They have not, like Robespierre, gone to lodge with a master joiner, to live him and eat with his family. Unlike Pache, Minister of War, no one among them "feels honored" by "going down to dine with his porter," and by sending his daughters to the club to give a fraternal kiss to drunken Jacobins. At Madame Roland's house there is a salon, although it is stiff and pedantic; Barbaroux send verses to a marchioness, who, after the 2nd of June, elopes with him to Caen. Condorcet has lived in high society, while his wife, a former canoness, possess the charms, the repose, the instruction, and the elegance of an accomplished woman. Men of this stamp cannot endure close alongside of them the inept and gross dictatorship of an armed rabble. In providing for the public treasury they require regular taxes and not tyrannical confiscations. To repress the malevolent they propose "punishment and not banishment." In all State trials they oppose irregular courts, and strive to maintain for those under indictment some of the usual safeguards. On declaring the King guilty they hesitate in pronouncing the sentence of death, and try to lighten their responsibility by appealing to the people. The line "laws and not blood," was a line which, causing a stir in a play of the day, presented in a nutshell their political ideas. And, naturally, the law, especially Republican law, is the law of all; once enacted, nobody, no citizen, no city, no party, can refuse to obey it without being criminal. It is monstrous that one city should arrogate to itself the privilege of ruling the nation; Paris, like other departments, should be reduced to its on-eighty-third proportion of influence. It is monstrous that, in a capital of 700,000 souls, five or six thousand radical Jacobins should oppress the sections and alone elect their candidates; in the sections and at the polls, all citizens, at least all republicans, should enjoy an equal and free vote. It is monstrous that the principle of popular sovereignty should be used to cover up attacks against popular sovereignty, that, under the pretense of saving the State, the first that comes along may kill whom he pleases, that, on the pretext that they are resisting oppression, each mob should have the "Right" to put the government down.—Hence, this militant "Right" must be pacified, enclosed within legal boundaries, and subjected to a fixed process. Should any individual desire a law, a reform or a public measure, let him state his on paper over his own signature and that of fifty other citizens of the same primary assembly; then the proposition must be submitted to his own primary assembly; then in case it obtains a majority, to the primary assemblies of his arrondissement; then, in case of a majority, to the primary assemblies of his department; then, in case of a majority, to all the primary assemblies of the nation, so that after a second verdict of the same assemblies twice consulted, the Legislative body, yielding to the majority of primary suffrages, may dissolve and a new Legislative body, in which all old members shall be declared ineligible, take its place.—This is the final expression and the master idea, of the theory. Condorcet, its able constructor, has outdone himself. Impossible to design on paper a more ingenious or complicated mechanism. The Girondists, in the closing article of this faultless constitution, believe that they have discovered a way to muzzle the beast and allow the sovereign people to fully assert their rights.
As if, with some kind of constitution and especially with this one, one could muzzle the beast! As if it was in the mood to crane the neck allowing them to put the muzzle on! Robespierre, on behalf of the Jacobins, counters with a clause radically opposed to the one drafted by Condorcet:
"To submit 'the right to resist oppression' to legal formalities is the ultimate refinement of tyranny... When a government violates the people's rights, a general insurrection of the people, as well as portions of the people, is the most sacred of duties."
Political orthodoxy, close reasoning, and oratorical talent are, however, no weapon against this ever-muttering insurrection.
"Our philosophers," says a good observer, "want to attain their ends by persuasion; which is equivalent to saying that battles may be won by eloquence, fine speeches, and plans of constitution. Very soon, according to them,.. if will suffice to carry complete copies of Macchiavelli, Rousseau and Montesquieu into battle instead of cannon, it never occurring to them that these authors, like their works, never were, and never will be, anything but fools when put up against a cut-throat provided with a good sword."
The parliamentary landscape has fallen away; things have returned to a state of nature, that is, to a state of war, and one is no longer concerned with debate but with brute force. To be in the right, to convince the convention, to obtain majorities, to pass decrees, would be appropriate in ordinary times, under a government provided with an armed force and a regular administration, by which, from the summits of public authority, the decrees of a majority descend through submissive functionaries to a sympathetic and obedient population. But, in times of anarchy, and above all, in the den of the Commune, in Paris, such as the 10th of August and the 2nd of September made it, all this is of no account.