* we (the Jacobins) have dethroned the King and cut off his head;
* we have suppressed, without indemnity, the entire feudal debt, comprising the rights vested in the seigneurs by virtue of their being owners of real-estate, and merely lessors;
* we have abandoned their persons and possessions to the claims and rancor of local jacqueries;
* we have reduced them to emigration;
* we imprison them if they stay at home;
* we guillotine them if they return.
(As the aristocrats are)Reared in habits of supremacy, and convinced that they are of a different species from other men, the prejudices of their race are incorrigible; they are incapable of companionship with their social equals; we cannot too carefully crush them out, or, at the very least, hold them firmly down. Besides, they are guilty from the fact of having existed; for, they have taken both the lead and the command without any right to do so, and, in violation of all right, they have misused mankind; having enjoyed their rank, it is but just that they should pay for it. Privileged in reverse, they must be treated the same as vagabonds were treated under their reign,
* stopped by the police and sent off with their families into the interior,
* crowded into prisons,
* executed in a mass, or, at least,
* expelled from Paris, the seaports and fortified towns, put on the limits,
* compelled to present themselves daily at the municipality,
* deprived of their political rights,
* excluded from public offices, "popular clubs, committees of supervision and from communal and section assemblages."
Even this is indulgence; branded with infamy, we ought to class them with galley-slaves, and set them to work on the public highways.
"Justice condemns the people's enemies and the partisans of tyranny to eternal slavery."
But that is not enough, because, apart from the aristocracy of rank, there are other aristocracies which the Constituent Assembly has left untouched, especially the aristocracy of wealth. Of all the sovereignties, that of the rich man over the poor one is the most burdensome. In effect, not only, in contempt of equality, does he consume more than his share of the common products of labor, and without producing anything himself, but again, in contempt of liberty, he may fix wages as he pleases, and, in contempt of humanity, he always fixes them at the lowest point. Between himself and the needy he never makes other than the most unjust contracts. Sole possessor of land, capital and the necessities of life, he imposes conditions which others, deprived of means, are forced to accept at the risk of starvation; he speculates at his discretion on wants which cannot be put off, and makes the most of his monopoly by maintaining the poor in their destitute situations. That is why, writes Saint Just:
"Opulence is a disgrace; for every thousand livres expenditure of this kind a smaller number of natural or adopted children can be looked after."—
"The richest Frenchman," says Robespierre, "ought not to have now more three thousand livres rental."—
Beyond what is strictly necessary, no property is legitimate; we have the right to take the superfluous wherever we find it. Not only to-day, because we now require it for the State and for the poor, but at all times, because the superfluous, in all times, confers on its owner an advantage in contracts, a control of wages, an arbitrary power over the means of living, in short, a supremacy of condition worse than preeminence in rank. Consequently, our hand is not only against the nobles, but also against the rich and well-to-do bourgeois the large land-owners and capitalists; we are going to demolish their crafty feudalism from top to bottom.—In the first place, and merely through the effect of the new institutions, we prevent any capitalist from deducting, as he is used to do, the best portion of the fruits of another's labor; the hornets shall no longer, year after year, consume the honey of the bees. To bring this about, we have only to let the assignats (paper money) and their forced rate (of exchange) work things out. Through the depreciation of paper-money, the indolent land-owner or capitalist sees his income melting away in his hands; his receipts consist only of nominal values. On the 1st of January, his tenant pays him really for a half term instead of a full term; on the 1st of March, his farmer settles his account with a bag of grain. The effect is just the same as if we had made fresh contracts, and reduced by one-half, three-quarters, or, even more, the rate of interest on loans, the rent of houses and the leases of farm lands.—Whilst the revenue of the landlord evaporates, his capital melts away, and we do the best we can to help this along. If he has claims on ancient corporations or civil and religious establishments of any description, whether provincial governments, congregations, associations, endowments or hospitals, we withdraw his special guarantee; we convert his title-deeds into a state annuity, we combine his private fortune with the public fortune whether he will or not, we drag him into the universal bankruptcy, toward which we are conducting all the creditors of the Republic.—Besides, to ruin him, we have more direct and prompt means. If an emigre, and there are hundreds of thousands of emigres, we confiscate his possessions. If he has been guillotined or deported, and there are tens of thousands of these, we confiscate his possessions. If he is "recognized as an enemy of the Revolution," and "all the rich pray for the counter-revolution," we sequestrate his property, enjoying the usufruct of it until peace is declared, and we shall have the property after the war is over. Usufruct or property, the State, in either case, inherits; at the most we might grant temporary aid to the family, which is not even entitled to maintenance.
It is impossible to uproot fortunes more thoroughly. As to those which are not at once eradicated we get rid of them piecemeal, and against these we employ two axes:
On the one hand, we decree the principle of progressive taxation, and on this basis we establish the forced loan: in incomes, we distinguish between the essential and the surplus; we fix according as the excess is greater or less we take a quarter, a third or the half of it, and, when above nine thousand francs, the whole; beyond its small alimentary reserve, the most opulent family will keep only four thousand five hundred francs income.
On the other hand, we cut deep into capital through revolutionary taxes; our committees and provincial proconsuls levy arbitrarily what suits them, three hundred, five hundred, up to one million two hundred thousand francs, on this or that banker, trader, bourgeois or widow, payable within a week; all the worse for the person taxed if he or she has no money on hand and is unable to borrow it; we declare them "suspects," we imprison them, we sequestrate their property and the State enjoys it in their place.
In any event, even when the amount is paid, we force him or her to deposit their silver and gold coin in our hands, sometimes with assignats as security, and often nothing; henceforth, money must circulate and the precious metals are in requisition; everybody will deliver up what plate he possesses. And let nobody presume to conceal his hoard; all treasure, whether silver-plate, diamonds, ingots, gold or silver, coined or un-coined, "discovered, or that may be discovered, buried in the ground or concealed in cellars, inside of walls or in garrets, under floors, pavements, or hearthstones, or in chimneys and other hiding places," becomes the property of the Republic, with a premium of twenty per cent. in assignats to the informer.—As, furthermore, we make requisitions for bed-linen, beds, clothes, provisions, wines and the rests, along with specie and precious metals, the condition of the mansion may be imagined, especially after we have lodged in it; it is the same as if the house had been on fire; all movable property and all real estate have perished.—Now that both are destroyed they must not be allowed to accumulate again. To ensure this,
1. we abolish, according to rule, the freedom of bequest,
2. we prescribe equal and obligatory divisions of all inheritances;
3. we include bastards in this under the same title as legitimate children;
4. we admit representation a l'infini, "in order to multiply heirs and parcel out inheritances;"
5. we reduce the disposable portion to one-tenth, in the direct line, and one-sixth in a collateral line;
6. we forbid any gift to persons whose income exceeds one thousand quintals of grain;
7. we inaugurate adoption, "an admirable institution," and essentially republican, "since it brings about a division of large properties without a crisis."
Already, in the Legislative Assembly a deputy had stated that "equal rights could be maintained only by a persistent tendency to uniformity of fortunes."
We have provided for this for the present day and we likewise provide for it in the future.—None of the vast tumors which have sucked the sap of the human plant are to remain; we have cut them away with a few telling blows, while the steady-moving machine, permanently erected by us, will shear off their last tendrils should they change to sprout again.
VI. Conditions requisite for making a citizen.
Conditions requisite for making a citizen.—Plans for suppressing poverty.—Measures in favor of the poor.
In returning Man to his natural condition we have prepared for the advent of the Social Man. The object now is to form the citizen, and this is possible only through a leveling of conditions. In a well made society there shall be "neither rich nor poor": we have already destroyed the opulence which corrupts; it now remains for us to suppress the poverty which degrades. Under the tyranny of material things, which is as oppressive as the tyranny of men, Man falls below himself. Never will a citizen be made out of a poor fellow condemned to remain valet, hireling or beggar, reduced to thinking only of himself and his daily bread, asking in vain for work, or, plodding when he gets it, twelve hours a day at a monotonous pursuit, living like a beast of burden and dying in a alms-house. He should have his own bread, his own roof, and all that is indispensable for life; he must not be overworked, nor suffer anxiety or constraint;
"he must live independently, respect himself, have a tidy wife and healthy and robust children."
The community should guarantee him comfort, security, the certainty of not going hungry if he becomes infirm, and, if he dies, of not leaving his family in want.
"It is not enough," says Barere, "to bleed the rich, to pull down colossal fortunes; the slavery of poverty must be banished from the soil of the Republic. No more beggars, no more almsgiving, no poor-houses".
"The poor and unfortunates," says Saint Just, "are the powerful of the earth; they have a right to speak as masters to the governments which neglect them; they have a right to national charity.... In a democracy under construction, every effort should be made to free people from having to battle for the bare minimum needed for survival; by labor if he is fit for work, by education if he is a child, or with public assistance if he is an invalid or in old age."
And never had the moment been so favorable. "Rich in property, the Republic now expects to use the many millions the rich would have spent on a counter revolution for the improvement of the conditions of its less fortunate citizens... Those who would assassinate liberty have made it the richer. The possessions of conspirators exist for the benefit of the unfortunate."—Let the poor take with a clear conscience: it is not a charity but "an indemnity" which we provide for them; we save their pride by providing for their comfort, and we relieve them without humiliating them.
"We leave charity and benevolent works to the monarchies; this insolent and shabby way of furnishing assistance is fit only for slaves and masters; we substitute for it a system of national works, on a grand scale, over the whole territory of the Republic."
On the other hand, we cause a statement to be drawn up in each commune, of "the condition of citizens without property," and "of national possessions not disposed of;" we divide these possession in small lots; we distribute them "in the shape of national sales" to poor folks able to work. We give, "through the form of rental, "an acre to each head of a family who has less than an acre of his own. "We thus bind all citizens to the country as well as to property. We restore idle and robust arms to the soil, and lost or weakened families to the workshops in the towns."—As to old and infirm farmers or craftsmen, also poor mothers, wives and widows of artisans and farmers, we keep in each department a "big ledger of national welfare;" we inscribe thereon for every thousand inhabitants, four farmers, two mechanics, five women, either mothers or widows; each registered person shall be pensioned by the State, the same as a maimed soldier; labor-invalids are as respectable as war-invalids.—Over and above those who are thus aided on account of poverty, we relieve and elevate the entire poor class, not alone the thirteen hundred thousand destitutes counted in France, but, again, all who, having little or no means on hand, live from day to day on what they can earn. We have passed a law by which the public treasury shall, through a tax on large fortunes, "furnish to each commune or district the necessary funds for adapting the price of bread to the rate of wages." Our representatives in the provinces impose on the wealthy the obligation of "lodging, feeding, and clothing all infirm, aged, and indigent citizens and orphans of their respective cantons." Through the decree on monopolization and the establishment of the "maximum" we bring within reach of the poor all objects of prime necessity. We pay them forty sous a day for attending district meetings; and three francs a day for serving on committees of surveillance. We recruit from amongst them our revolutionary army; we select amongst them the innumerable custodians of sequesters: in this way, hundreds of thousands of sans-culottes enter into the various public services.—At last, the poor are taken out of a state of poverty: each will now have his plot of ground, his salary or pension;
"in a well-ordered republic nobody is without some property."
Henceforth, among individuals, the difference in welfare will be small; from the maximum to the minimum, there will be only a degree, while there will be found in every dwelling about the same sort of household, a plain, simple household, that of the small rural proprietor, well-off farmer or factory foreman; that of Rousseau at Montmorency, or that of the Savoyard Vicar, or that of Duplay, the carpenter, with whom Robespierre lodges. There will be no more domestic servitude: "only the bond of help and gratitude will exists between employer and employee."—He who works for another citizen belongs to his family and sits at his table."—Through the transformation of lower social classes into middle class conditions we restore human dignity, and out of the proletarian, the valet and the workman, we begin to liberate the citizen.
VII. Socialist projects.
Repression of Egoism.—Measures against farmers, manufacturers and merchants.—Socialist projects. —Repression of Federalism.—Measures against the local, professional and family spirit.
Two leading obstacles hinder the development of civism, and the first is egoism. Whilst the citizen prefers the community to himself, the egoist prefers himself to the community. He cares only for his own interest, he gives no heed to public necessities; he sees none of the superior rights which take precedence of his derived right; he supposes that his property is his own without restriction or condition; he forgets that, if he is allowed to use it, he must not use it to another's detriment. This even the middle or low class, who possess goods essential for survival, will do. The greater the demand for these goods the higher they raise their prices; soon, they sell only at an exorbitant rate, and worse still, stop selling and store their goods or products, in the expectation of selling them dearer. In this way, they speculate on another's wants; they augment the general distress and become public enemies. Nearly all the agriculturists, manufacturers and tradesmen of the day, little and big, are public enemies—farmers, tenant farmers, market-gardeners, cultivators of every degree, as well as foremen, shopkeepers, especially wine-dealers, bakers and butchers.
"All merchants are essentially anti-revolutionaries, and would sell their country to gain a few pennies."
We will not tolerate this legal brigandage. Since "agriculture has done nothing for liberty and has sought only its own gain," we will put it under surveillance, and, if necessary, under control. Since "commerce has become a species of miserly tyrant," since "it has become self-paralyzed," and, "through a sort of anti-revolutionary contempt, neglected the manufacture, handling and expedition of diverse materials," we will thwart "the calculations of its barbarous arithmetic, and purge it of the aristocratic and corrupting fermentation which oppresses it." We make monopoly "a capital crime;" we call him a monopolist who "takes food and wares of prime necessity out of circulation," and "keeps them stored without daily and publicly offering them for sale." Penalty of death against whoever, within eight days, does not make a declaration, or if he makes a false one. Penalty of death against the dealer who does not post up the contents of his warehouse, or who does not keep open shop. Penalty of death against any person who keeps more bread on hand than he needs for his subsistence. Penalty of death against the cultivator who does not bring his grain weekly to market. Penalty of death against the dealer who does not post up the contents of his warehouse, or who does not keep open shop. Penalty of death against the manufacturer who does not verify the daily use of his workable material.—As to prices, we intervene authoritatively between buyer and seller; we fix the maximum price for all objects which, near or remotely, serve to feed, warm and clothe man; we will imprison whoever offers or demands anything more. Whether the dealer or manufacturer pays expenses at this rate, matters not; if, after the maximum is fixed, he closes factory, or gives up business, we declare him a "suspect;" we chain him down to his pursuit, we oblige him to lose by it.—This is the way to clip the claws of beasts of prey, little and big! But the claws grow out again, and, instead of paring them down, it would probably be better to pull them out. Some amongst us have already thought of that; the right of pre-emption shall be applied to every article; "in each department, national storehouse might be established where farmers, land-owners and manufacturers would be obliged to deposit at a fixed price, paid down, the surplus of their consumption of every species of merchandise. The nation would distribute this merchandise to wholesale dealers, reserving a profit of six per cent. The profit of the wholesale dealer would be fixed at eight per cent and that of the retailer at twelve per cent." In this way, farmers, manufacturers, and merchants would all become clerks of the State, appointed on a premium or a discount; unable to gain a great deal, they would not be tempted to gain too much; they would cease to be greedy and soon cease to be egoists.—Since, fundamentally, egoism is the capital vice and individual proprietorship the food that nourishes it, why not suppress individual proprietorship altogether? Our extreme logicians, with Babaeuf at the head of them, go as far as that, and Saint-Just seems to be of that opinion. We are not concerned with the enacting of an Agrarian; the nation may reserve the soil to itself and divide among individuals, not the soil, but its lease. The outcome of this principle affords us a glimpse of an order of things in which the State, sole proprietor of real-estate, sole capitalist, sole manufacturer, sole trader, having all Frenchmen in its pay and service, would assign to each one his task according to his aptitude, and distribute to each one his rations according to his wants.—These various uncompleted plans still float in a hazy distance but their common purpose is clearly distinguishable.
"All which tends to center human passions on the vile, individual ego must be repudiated or repressed;"
We should annihilate special interests, deprive the individual of the motives and means for self-isolation, suppress preoccupations and ambitions by which Man makes himself a focal point at the expense of the real center, in short, to detach him from himself in order to attach him wholly to the State.
This is why, disregarding the narrow egoism through which the individual prefers himself to the community, we strive towards the enlarged egoism by which the individual prefers the community to the group of which he forms a part. Under no pretext must he separate himself from the whole, at no price, must he be allowed to form for himself a small homeland within the large one, for, by the affection he entertains for the small one, he frustrates the objects of the large one. Nothing is worse than political, civil, religious and domestic federalism; we combat it under all its forms. In this particular, the Constituent Assembly has paved the way for us, since it has broken up all the principal historic or material groups by which men have separated themselves from the masses and formed a band apart, provinces, clergy, nobles, parliaments, religious orders and trades-unions. We complete its work, we destroy churches, we suppress literary or scientific associations, educational or benevolent societies, even down to financial companies. We prohibit any departmental or commercial "local spirit:" we find
"odious and opposed to all principles, that, amongst municipalities, some should be rich and others poor, that one should have immense patrimonial possessions and another nothing but debts."
We regard these possessions as the nation's, and we place indebtedness to the nation's account. We take grain from rich communes and departments, to feed poor communes and departments. We build bridges, roads and canals of each district, at the expense of the State; "we centralize the labor of the French people in a broad, opulent fashion." We want no more local interests, recollections, dialects, idioms and patriotisms. Only one bond should subsist between individuals, that which attaches them to the social body. We sunder all others; we do not tolerate any special aggregation; we do the best we can to break up the most tenacious of all, the family.—We therefore give marriage the status of an ordinary contract: we render this loose and precarious, resembling as much as possible the free and transient union of the sexes; it shall be dissolved at the option of both parties, and even of one of the parties, after one month of formalities and of probation. If the couple has lived separate six months; the divorce may be granted without any probation or delay; divorced parties may re-marry. On the other hand, we suppress marital authority: since spouses are equal, each has equal rights over common property and the property of each other; we deprive the husband of its administration and render it "common" to both parties. We abolish "paternal authority;"
"it is cheating nature to enforce her rights through constraint.. .. The only rights that parents have are those of protection and watchfulness."
The father can no longer control the education of his children; the State takes charge of it. The father is no longer master of his property; that portion he can dispose of by donation or testament is of the smallest; we prescribe an equal and forced division of property.—Finally we preach adoption, we efface bastardy, we confer on children born of free love, or of a despotic will, the same rights as those of legitimate children. In short, we break that sacred circle, that exclusive group, that aristocratic organization which, under the name of the family, was created out of pride and egoism.—Henceforth, affection and obedience will no longer be frittered away; the miserable supports to which they have clung like ivy vines, castes, churches, corporations, provinces, communes or families, are ruined and rooted out; on the ground which is thus leveled, the State alone remains standing, and it alone offers any point of adhesion; all these vines are about to twine themselves in on trunk about the great central column.
VIII. Indoctrination of mind and intellect.
Indoctrination of mind and intellect.—Civil religion. —National education.—Egalitarian moral standards. —Obligatory civism.—The recasting and reduction of human nature to the Jacobin type.
Let not Man go astray, let us lead him on, let us direct minds and souls, and, to this end, let us enfold him in our doctrines. He needs general ideas and the daily experiences flowing out of them; he needs some theory explaining the origin and nature of things, one which assigns him his place and the part he has to play in the world, which teaches him his duties, which regulates his life, which fixes the days he shall work and the days he shall rest, which stamps itself on his mind through commemorations, festivals and ceremonies, through a catechism and a calendar. Up to this time Religion has been the power charged with this service, interpreted and served by the Church; now it is to be Reason, interpreted and served by the State.—In this connection, many among us, disciples of the encyclopedists, constitute Reason a divinity, and honor her with a system of worship; but it is plain that they personify an abstraction; their improvised goddess is simply an allegorical phantom; none of them see in her the intelligent cause of the world; in the depths of their hearts they deny this Supreme Cause, their pretended religion being merely a show or a sham.—We discard atheism, not only because it is false, but again, and more especially, because it is disintegrating and unwholesome. We want an effective, consolatory and fortifying religion, and that religion is natural religion, which is social as well as true. "Without this, as Rousseau has said, it is impossible to be a good citizen......The existence of divinity, the future life, the sacredness of the social contract and of the laws," all are its dogmas; "no one may be forced to believe in these, but whoever dares say that he does not believe in them, sets himself up against the French people, the human species and nature." Consequently, we decree that "the French people recognizes the Supreme Being and the immortality of the soul."—The important thing now is to plant this entirely philosophic faith in all hearts. We introduce it into the civil order of things, we take the calendar out of the hands of the Church, we purge it of its Christian imagery; we make the new era begin with the advent of the Republic; we divide the year according to the metric system, we name the months according to the vicissitudes of the seasons, "we substitute, in all directions, the realities of reason for the visions of ignorance, the truths of nature for a sacerdotal prestige," the decade for the week, the decadi for Sundays, lay festivals for ecclesiastical festivals. On each decadi, through solemn and appropriate pomp, we impress on the popular mind one of the highest truths of our creed; we glorify, in the order of their dates, Nature, Truth, Justice, Liberty, Equality, the People, Adversity, Humanity, the Republic, Posterity, Glory, Patriotism, Heroism, and other virtues. Besides this, we honor the important days of the Revolution, the taking of the Bastille, the fall of the Throne, the punishment of the tyrant, the expulsion of the Girondins. We, too, have our anniversaries, our relics, the relics of Chalier and Marat, our processions, our services, our ritual, and the vast system of visible pageantry by which dogmas are made manifest and propagated. But ours, instead of leading men off to an imaginary heaven, brings them back to a living patrimony, and, through our ceremonies as well as through our creed, we shall preach public-spiritedness (civism).
It is important to preach this to adults, it is still more important to teach it to children: for children are more easily molded than adults. Our hold on these still flexible minds is complete, and, through national education "we seize the coming generations." Naught is more essential and naught is more legitimate.
"The country," says Robespierre, "has a right to bring up its own children; it cannot confide this trust to family pride nor to the prejudices of individuals, the eternal nourishment of aristocracies and of a domestic federalism which narrows the soul by keeping it isolated." We are determined to have "education common and equal for all French people," and "we stamp on it a great character, analogous to the nature of our government and the sublime doctrines of our Republic. The aim is no longer to form gentlemen (messieurs) but citizens."
We oblige teachers, male and female, to present certificates of civism, that is to say, of Jacobinism. We close the school if "precepts or maxims opposed to revolutionary morality" are taught in it, that is to say, in conformity with Christian morals. Children will learn to read in the Declaration of Rights and in the Constitution of 1793. Republican manuals and catechisms will be prepared for their use. "They must be taught the virtuous traits which most honor free men, and especially the traits characteristic of the French Revolution, the best calculated to elevate the soul and render them worthy of equality and liberty." The 14th of July, 10th of August, 2nd of September, 21st of January, and 31st of May must be lauded or justified in their presence. They must be taken to meetings of the municipalities, to the law courts, and especially to the popular clubs; from these pure sources they will derive a knowledge of their rights, of their duties, of the laws, of republican morality," and, on entering society, they will find themselves imbued with all good maxims. Over and above their political opinions we shape their ordinary habits. We apply on a grand scale the plan of education drawn out by Jean-Jacques (Rousseau). We want no more literary prigs; in the army, "the 'dandy' breaks down during the first campaign; we want young men able to endure privation and fatigue, toughened, like Emile, "by hard work" and physical exercise.—We have, thus far, only sketched out this department of education, but the agreement amongst the various plans shows the meaning and bearings of our principle. "Children generally, without exception, says Le Peletier de Saint-Fargeau, the boys from five to twelve, the girls from five to eleven years of age, must be brought up in common at the expense of the Republic; all, under the sacred law of equality, are to receive the same clothing, the same food, the same education, the same attention "in boarding-schools distributed according to cantons, and containing each from four to six hundred pupils.
"Pupils will be made to submit every day and every moment to the same rigid rules... Their beds must be hard, their food healthy, but simple, their clothing comfortable, but coarse." Servants will not be allowed; children must help themselves and, besides this, they must wait on the old and infirm, lodged with or near them. "Among daily duties, manual labor will be the principal thing; all the rest will be accessory." Girls must learn to spin, sew and wash clothes; the boys will work the roads, be shepherds, ploughmen and work-hands; both will have tasks set them, either in the school-workshops, or in the fields and factories in the neighborhood; they will be hired out to surrounding manufacturers and to the tillers of the soil. Saint-Just is more specific and rigid. "Male children from five to sixteen years of age, must be raised for their country. They must be clad in common cloth at all seasons, and have mats for beds, and sleep eight hours. They are to have common food only, fruits, vegetables, preparations of milk, bread and water. They must not eat meat before sixteen.. Their education, from ten to sixteen, is to be military and agricultural. They will be formed into companies of sixty; six companies make a battalion; the children of a district form a legion; they will assemble annually at the district town, encamp there and drill in infantry tactics, in arenas specially provided for the purpose; they will also learn cavalry maneuvers and every other species of military evolution. In harvest time they are to be distributed amongst the harvesters." After sixteen, "they enter the crafts," with some farmer, artisan, merchant or manufacturer, who becomes their titular "instructor," and with whom they are bound to remain up to the age of twenty-one, "under the penalty of being deprived for life of a citizen's rights.... All children will dress alike up to sixteen years of age; from twenty-one to twenty-five, they will dress as soldiers, if they are not in the magistracy."—Already we show the effects of the theory by one striking example; we founded the "Ecole de Mars;" we select out of each district six boys from sixteen to seventeen and a half years old "among the children of sans-culottes;" we summon them to Paris, "to receive there, through a revolutionary education, whatever belongs to the knowledge and habits of a republican soldier. They are schooled in fraternity, in discipline, in frugality, in good habits, in love of country and in detestation of kings." three or four thousand young people are lodged at the Sablons, "in a palisaded enclosure, the intervals of which are guarded by chevaux de frises and sentinels." We puts them into tents; we feed them with bran bread, rancid pork, water and vinegar; we drill them in the use of arms; we march them out on national holidays and stimulate them with patriotic harangues.—Suppose all Frenchmen educated in such a school; the habits they acquire in youth will persist in the adult, and, in each adult we shall find the sobriety, energy and patriotism of a Spartan or Roman.
Already, under the pressure of our decrees, civism affects customs, and there are manifest signs, on all sides, of public regeneration. "The French people," says Robespierre, "seems to have outstripped the rest of humanity, by two thousand years; one might be tempted to regard them, living amongst them, as a different species. In the rest of Europe, a ploughman, an artisan, is an animal formed for the pleasures of a noble; in France, the nobles are trying to transform themselves into ploughmen and artisans, but do not succeed in obtaining that honor." Life in all directions is gradually assuming democratic forms Wealthy prisoners are prohibited from purchasing delicacies, or procuring special conveniences; they eat along with the poor prisoners the same ration, at the common mess. Bakers have orders to make but one quality of bread, the brown bread called equality bread, and, to obtain his ration, each person must place himself in line with the rest of the crowd. On holidays everybody will bring his provisions down into the street and eat as one family with his neighbor; on decadi all are to sing and dance together, pell-mell, in the temple of the Supreme being. The decrees of the Convention and the orders of the representatives impose the republican cockade on women; public opinion and example impose on men the costume and appearance of sans-culottes we see even dandies wearing mustaches, long hair, red cap, vest and heavy wooden shoes. Nobody calls a person Monsieur or Madame; the only titles allowed are citoyen and citoyenne while thee and Thou is the general rule. Rude familiarity takes the place of monarchical politeness; all greet each other as equals and comrades. There is now only one tone, one style, one language; revolutionary forms constitute the tissue of speech, as well as of written discourse; thought now seems to consists entirely of our ideas and phrases. All names are transformed, those of months and of days, those of places and of monuments, baptismal names and names of families: St. Denis has become Franciade; Peter Gaspard is converted into Anaxagoras, and Antoine-Louis into Brutus; Leroi, the deputy, calls himself Laloi, and Leroy, the jurist, calls himself August-Tenth.—By dint of thus shaping the exterior we reach the interior, and through outward civism we prepare internal civism. Both are obligatory, but the latter much more so than the former; for that is the fundamental principle, "the incentive which sustains and impels a democratic and popular government." It is impossible to apply the social contract if everybody does not scrupulously observe the first clause of it, namely, the complete surrender of himself to the community; everybody, then, must give himself up entirely, not only actually but heartily, and devote himself to the public good, which public good is the regeneration of Man as we have defined it. The veritable citizen is he who thus marches along with us. With him, as with us, abstract truths of philosophy control the conscience and govern the will. He starts with our articles of faith and follows them out to the end; he endorses our acts, he recites our creed, he observes our discipline, he is a believing and practicing Jacobin, an orthodox Jacobin, unsullied, and without taint of heresy or schism. Never does he swerve to the left toward exaggeration, nor to the right toward toleration; without haste or delay he travels along the narrow, steep and straight path which we have marked out for him; this is the pathway of reason, for, as there is but one reason, there is but one pathway. Let no one swerve from the line; there are abysses on each side of it. Let us follow our guides, men of principles, the pure, especially Couthon, Saint-Just and Robespierre; they are choice specimens, all cast in the true mold, and it is this unique and rigid mold in which all French men are to be recast.
[Footnote 2101: This and the following text are taken from the "Contrat-Social" by Rousseau. Cf. "The ancient Regime," book III., ch.. IV.]
[Footnote 2102: This idea, so universally prevalent and precocious, is uttered by Mirabeau in the session of the 10th of August, 1789. (Buchez et Roux, II., 257.) "I know of but three ways of maintaining one's existence in society, and these are to be either a beggar, a robber or a hireling. The proprietor is himself only the first of hirelings. What we commonly call his property is nothing more than the pay society awards him for distributing amongst others that which is entrusted to him to distribute through his expenses and through what he consumes; proprietors are the agents, the stewards of the social body."]
[Footnote 2103: Report by Roland, January 6, 1793, and by Cambon, February 1, 1793.]
[Footnote 2104: Buchez et Roux, XXXI., 311. Report by Saint-Just, Ventose 8, year II., and decree in conformity therewith.]
[Footnote 2105: Decree of 13 Brumaire, year II.—Report by Cambon, Feb. 1, 1793. Cambon estimates the property alone of the order of Malta and of the colleges at four hundred million livres.]
[Footnote 2106: Moniteur, XVIII., 419 and 486. Reports by Cambon, Brumaire 22 and Frimaire 1st, year II. "Let us begin with taking possession of the leased domains, notwithstanding preceding laws."]
[Footnote 2107: Cf. "The Ancient Regime," p. 14.]
[Footnote 2108: Mallet-Dupan, "Memoires," II., 19. Moniteur, XVIII., 565. (Report by Cambon, 11 Frimaire, year II.) Requested to do so by a popular club of Toulouse, the department of Haute-Garonne has ordered all possessors of articles in gold or silver to bring them to the treasuries of their districts to be exchanged for assignats. This order has thus far brought into the Toulouse treasury about one million five hundred thousand or one million six hundred thousand livres in gold and silver. The same at Montauban and other places. "Several of our colleagues have even decreed the death penalty against whoever did not bring their gold and silver within a given time."]
[Footnote 2109: Archives Nationales, AF. II., 106. (Order by representative Beauchamp, l'Isle Jourdan, Pluviose 2, year II.) "All blue and green cloaks in the departments of Haute-Garonne, as well as of the Landes, Gers and others, are put in requisition from the present day. Every citizen possessing blue or green cloaks is required to declare them at the depot of municipality or other locality where he may chance to be." If not, he is considered "suspect" is treated as such.—Ibid., AF.II., 92 (Order issued by Taillefer, Brumaire 3, year II., at Villefranche-l'Aveyron).—De Martel, "Etude sur Fouche," 368. (Order by Fouche, Collot d'Herbois and Delaporte: Lyons, Brumaire 21, year II.)—Moniteur, XVIII., 384. (Session of 19th Brumaire. Letter of Barras and Freron, dated at Marseilles.)—Moniteur XVIII., 513 (Orders by Lebon and Saint-Just, at Strasbourg, Brumaire 24 and 25, year II.) Letter of Isore to the minister Bouchotte, November 4, 1793. (Legros, "La Revolution telle qu'elle est.") The principle of these measures was laid down by Robespierre in his speech on property (April 24, 1793), and in his declaration of rights unanimously adopted by the Jacobin Club (Buchez et Roux, XXVI., 93 and 130).]
[Footnote 2110: Rousset, "Les Volontaires," p. 234 and 254.]
[Footnote 2111: Report by Cambon, Pluviose 3, year III., p.3. "One fifth of the active population is employed in the common defense."—Decree of May 12, and Aug. 23, 1793.—Decree of November 22, 1793.—Order of the Directory, October 18, 1798.]
[Footnote 2112: Moniteur, XIX., 631. Decree of Ventose 14, year II. Archives Nationales, D.SI., 10. (Orders by representatives Delacroix, Louchet and Legendre; Pont-Audemer, Frimaire 14, year II.)—Moniteur, XVIII, 622.—(Decree of Frimaire 18, year II.)]
[Footnote 2113: Lenin must have read Taine's text during his long studious stay in Paris. He and Stalin did, in any case try to let the USSR function in accordance with such central allocated planning. (SR.)]
[Footnote 2114: Decree of 15-18 Floreal, year II. Decree of September 29, 1793, (in which forty objects of prime necessity are enumerated.—Article 9 decrees three days imprisonment against workmen and manufacturers who "without legitimate reason, shall refuse to do their ordinary task."—Decrees of September 16 and 20, 1793, and that of September 11, articles 16,19, 20 and 21.]
[Footnote 2115: Archives Nationales, AF. II., III. Order of the representative Ferry; Bourges, 23 Messidor, year II.—Ibid., AF. II., 106. Order of the representative Dartigoyte, Auch, Prairial 18, year II.]
[Footnote 2116: Decree of Brumaire 11, year II., article 7.]
[Footnote 2117: Gouvion Saint Cyr, "Memoires sur les campagnes de 1792 a la paix de Campo-Formio," I., 91-109: "Promotion, which every one feared at this time."... Ibid. 229. "Men who had any resources obstinately held aloof from any kind of advancement." Archives Nationales, DS. I, 5. (Mission of representative Albert in L'Aube and La Marne, and especially the order issued by Albert, Chalons, Germinal 7, year III., with the numerous petitions of judges and town officers soliciting their removal.—Letter of the painter Gosse (published in Le Temps, May 31, 1872), which is very curious, showing the trials of those in private life during the Revolution: "My father was appointed charity commissioner and quartermaster for the troops; at the time of the Reign of Terror it would have been imprudent to have refused any office"—Archives Nationales, F7, 3485. The case of Girard Toussaint, notary at Paris, who "fell under the sword of the law, Thermidor 9, year II." This Girard, who was very liberal early in the revolution, was president of his section in 1789, but, after the 10th of August, he had kept quiet. The committee of the section of the "Amis de la Patrie," "considering that citizen Girard.... came forward only at the time when the court and Lafayette prevailed against the sans-culottes;" that, "since equality was established by the Revolution he has deprived his fellow citizens of his knowledge, which, in a revolution, is criminal, unanimously agree that the said citizen is "suspect" and order "him to be sent to the Luxembourg."]
[Footnote 2118: Ludovic Sciout, "Histoire de la Constitution civile du clerge," IV., 131, 135. (Orders issued by Dartigoyte and de Pinet).—"Recueil de pieces authentiques serrant a l'histoire de la revolution a Strasbourg." Vol. I. p. 230. (Speech by Schneider at Barr, for marrying the patriot Funck.) Schneider, it appears, did still better on his own account. (Ibid., 317).]
[Footnote 2119: Buchez et Roux, XXIX., 160. (Report of Saint-Just, October 20, 1793.) "You have to punish not only traitors, but even the indifferent; you must punish all in the Republic who are passive and do nothing for it."]
[Footnote 2120: Buchez et Roux, XXXII., 338. Report of the Convention on the theory of democratic government, by Billaud-Varennes (April 20, 1794).]
[Footnote 2121: Buchez et Roux, XXXI., 270. Report by Robespierre, on the principles which should guide the National Convention in the internal administration of the Republic, February 5, 1794.—Cf. "The ancient Regime," 227-230, the ideas of Rousseau, of which those of Robespierre are simply a recast.]
[Footnote 2122: Ibid., 270.—The pretension of reforming men's sentiments is found in all the programs. Ibid., 305. (Report of Saint-Just, February 26, 1794.) "Our object is to create an order of things establishing a universal inclination toward the good, and to have factions immediately hurled upon the scaffold." Ibid., 337. (Report of Saint-Just, March 13, 1794.—Ibid., 337. (Report of Saint-Just, March 13, 1794.) "We see but one way of arresting the evil, and that is to convert the revolution into a civil power and wage war on every species of perversity, as designedly created amongst us for the enervation of the republic."]
[Footnote 2123: Ibid., XXXV., 276. (Institutions, by Saint-Just.—Ibid., 287.)—Moniteur, XVIII., 343. Meeting of the Jacobin Club, Brumaire 13, year II., speech by Baudot.]
[Footnote 2124: Buchez et Roux, XXIX, 142. (Speech by Jean Bon St. Andre in the Convention, Sep. 25, 1793.) "We are said to exercise arbitrary power, we are charged with being despots. We, despots!... Ah, no doubt, if despotism is to secure the triumph of liberty, such a despotism is political regeneration." (Applause.)—Ibid, XXXI., 276. (Report by Robespierre, Pluviose 17, year, II.) "It has been said that terror is the incentive of despotic government. Does yours, then, resemble despotism? Yes, as the sword which flashes in the hands of the heroes of liberty, resembles that with which the satellites of tyranny are armed..... The government of the Revolution is the despotism of freedom against tyranny."]
[Footnote 2125: Ibid., XXXII, 353. Decree of April 1791. "The Convention declares, that, supported by the virtues of the French people, it will insure the triumph of the democratic revolution and show no pity in punishing its enemies."]
[Footnote 2126: In the following portrayal of the ancient regime, the bombast and credulity of the day overflows in the most extravagant exaggerations (Buchez et Roux, XXXI., 300, Report, by Saint-Just, February 26, 1794.): "In 1788, Louis XVI. Caused eight thousand persons of both sexes and of every age to be sacrificed in the rue Meslay and on the Pont-Neuf. These scenes were repeated by the court on the Champs de Mars; the court had hangings in the prisons, and the bodies of the drowned found in the Seine were its victims. These were four hundred thousand prisoners in confinement; fifteen thousand smugglers were hung in a year, and three thousand men were broken on the wheel; there were more prisoners in Paris than there are now... Look at Europe. There are four millions of people shut up in Europe whose shrieks are never heard."—Ibid., XXIV., 132. (Speech by Robespierre, May 10, 1793). "Up to this time the art of governing has simply consisted in the art of stripping and subduing the masses for the benefit of the few, and legislation, the mode of reducing these outrages to a system."]
[Footnote 2127: Buchez et Roux, XXXII., 353. (Report by Robespierre to the Convention, May 7, 1794.) "Nature tells us that man is born for freedom while the experience of man for centuries shows him a slave. His rights are written in his heart and history records his humiliation."]
[Footnote 2128: Ibid., 372. "Priests are to morality what charlatans are to medical practice. How different is the God of nature from the God of the priests! I know of nothing which is so much like atheism as the religions they have manufactured." Already, in the Constituent Assembly, Robespierre wanted to prevent the father from endowing a child. "You have done nothing for liberty if yours laws do not tend to diminish by mild and effective means the inequality of fortunes." (Hamel, I., 403.)]
[Footnote 2129: Decree of Frimaire 18, year II.—Note the restrictions: "The convention, in the foregoing arrangement, has no idea of derogating from any law or precaution for public safety against refractory or turbulent priests, or against those who might attempt to abuse the pretext of religion in order to compromise the cause of liberty. Nor does it mean to disapprove of what has thus far been done by virtue of the ordinances of representatives of the people, nor to furnish anybody with a pretext for unsettling patriotism and relaxing the energy of public spirit."]
[Footnote 2130: Decrees of May 27, and August 26, 1792, March 18, April 21 and October 20, 1793, April 11, and May 11, 1794.—Add (Moniteur, XIX., 697) the decree providing for the confiscation of the possessions of ecclesiastics "who have voluntarily left or been so reported, who are retired as old or inform, or who have preferred transportation to retirement."—Ibid., XVIII., 492, (session of Frimaire 2). A speech by Forester. "As to the priesthood, its continuation has become a disgrace and even a crime."—Archives Nationales, AF. II., 36. (An order by Lequinio, representative of the people of Charante-Inferieur, la Vendee and Deux-Sevres, Saintes, Nivose 1, year II.) "In order that freedom of worship may exist in full plenitude it is forbidden to all whom it may concern to preach or write in favor of any form of worship or religious opinion whatsoever." And especially "it is expressly forbidden to any former minister, belonging to any religious sect whatever, to preach, write or teach morality under penalty of being regarded as a suspect and, as such, immediately put under arrest.. .. Every man who undertakes to preach any religious precepts whatsoever is, by that fact, culpable before the people. He violates ... social equality, which does not permit the individual to publicly raise his ideal pretensions above those of his neighbor."]
[Footnote 2131: Ludofic Sciout, "Histoire de la Constitution Civile du clerge," vols. III. and IV., passim.—Jules Sauzay, "Histoire de la persecution revolutionaire dans le Doubs," vols. III., IV., V., and VI., particularly the list, at the end of the work, of those deported, guillotined, sent into the interior and imprisoned.]
[Footnote 2132: Order of the day of the Convention September 17, 1792; circular of the Executive Council, January 22, 1793; decrees of the Convention, July 19, August 12, September 17, November 15, 1793.—Moniteur, October, and November, 1793, passim. (November 23, Order of the Paris Commune, closing the churches.)—In relation to the terror the constitutional priests were under, I merely give the following extracts (Archives Nationales, F7,31167): "Citizen Pontard, bishop of the department of Dordogne, lodging in the house of citizen Bourbon, No. 66 faubourg Saint-Honore, on being informed that there was an article in a newspaper called "le Republican" stating that a meeting of priests had been held in the said house, declares that he had no knowledge of it; that all the officers in charge of the apartments are in harmony with the Revolution; that, if he had had occasion to suspect such a circumstance, he would have move out immediately, and that if any motive can possibly be detected in such a report it is his proposed marriage with the niece of citizen Caminade, an excellent patriot and captain of the 9th company of the Champs-Elysees section, a marriage which puts an end to fanaticism in his department, unless this be done by the ordination of a priest a la sans-culotte which he had done yesterday in the chapel, another act in harmony with the Revolution. It is well to add, perhaps, that one of his cures now in Paris has called on him, and that he came to request him to second his marriage. The name of the said cure is Greffier Sauvage; he is still in Paris, and is preparing to be married the same time as himself. Aside from these motives, which may have given rise to some talk, citizen Pontard sees no cause whatever for suspicion. Besides, so thoroughly patriotic as he, he asks nothing better than to know the truth, in order to march along unhesitatingly in the revolutionary path. He sighs his declaration, promising to support the Revolution on all occasions, by his writings as well as by his conduct. He presents the two numbers of his journal which he has had printed in Paris in support of the principles he adheres to. At Paris, September 7, 1793, year II. Of the Republic, one and indivisible. F. Pontard, bishop of the Republic in the department of Dordogne."—Dauban La Demagogie en 1793, p. 557. Arrest of representative Osselin, letter his brother, cure of Saint-Aubin, to the committee of section Mutius Scoevola, Brumaire 20, year II.,"Like Brutus and Mutius Scoevola, I trample on the feelings with which I idolised my brother! O, truth, thou divinity of republicans, thou knowest the incorruptibility of may intentions!" (and so on for fifty-three lines). "These are my sentiments, I am fraternally, Osselin, minister of worship at Saint-Aubin."—P.S. "It was just as I was going to answer a call of nature that I learned this afflicting news." (He keeps up this bombast until words fail him, and finally, frightened to death, and his brain exhausted, he gives this postscript to show that he was not an accomplice.)]
[Footnote 2133: A term denoting the substitution of ten instead of seven days as a division of time in the calendar, and forced into use during the Revolution.]
[Footnote 2134: "Recuil de pieces authentiques servant a l'histoire de la revolution a Strasbourg," II., 299. (A district order.)]
[Footnote 2135: Later, when Lenin and Stalin resurrected Jacobinism, they placed the headquarters of any subversive movement outside the country where it operated. (SR.)]
[Footnote 2136: Thermidor refers to the a very important day and event during the French Revolution: the day Robespierre fell: Thermidor 9, year II, (July 27, 1794), Robespierre's fall, effective the 10, was prepared by his adversaries, Tallien, Barras, Fouche etc., essentially because they feared for their lives. Robespierre and 21 of his followers were executed on the evening of the 10th of Thermidor year II. (SR.).]
[Footnote 2137: Ludovic Sciout, IV., 426. (Instructions sent by the Directory to the National Commissions, Frimaire, year II.)—Ibid., ch. X. to XVIII.]
[Footnote 2138: Ibid., IV., 688.An order of the Director, Germinal 14, year VI.—"The municipal governments will designate special days in each decade for market days in their respective districts, and not allow, in any case, their ordinance to be set aside on the plea that the said market days would fall on a holiday. They will specially strive to break up all connection between the sales of fish and days of fasting designated on the old calendar. Every person exposing food or wares on sale in the markets on days other than those fixed by the municipal government will be prosecuted in the police court for obstructing a public thoroughfare."—The Thermidorians remain equally as anti-Catholic as their predecessors; only, they disavow open persecution and rely on slow pressure. (Moniteur, XIII., 523. Speech by Boissy d'Anglas, Ventose 3, year II.) "Keep an eye on what you cannot hinder; regulate what you cannot prohibit.... It will not be long before these absurd dogmas, the offspring of fear and error, whose influence on the human mind has been so steadily destructive, will be known only to be despised.... It will not be long before the religion of Socrates, of Marcus Aurelius and Cicero will be the religion of the whole world."]
[Footnote 2139: Moniteur, XVI., 646. (The King's trial.) Speech by Robespierre: "the right of punishing the tyrant and of dethroning him is one and the same thing."—Speech by Saint-Just: "Royalty is an eternal crime, against which every man has the right of taking up arms... To reign innocently is impossible!"]
[Footnote 2140: Epigraph of Marat's journal: Ute readapt miseries, abet Fortuna superb is.]
[Footnote 2141: Buchez et Roux, XXXII., 323. (Report of Saint-Just, Germinal 21, year II., and a decree of Germinal 26-29, Art. 4, 13, 15.)—Ibid., 315.]
[Footnote 2142: Buchez et Roux, (Report of Saint-Just, October 10, 1793.) "That would be the only good they could do their country.... It would be no more than just for the people to reign over its oppressors in its turn, and that their pride should be bathed in the sweat of their brows."]
[Footnote 2143: Ibid., XXXI., 309. (Report of Saint-Just, Ventose 8, year II.)]
[Footnote 2144: Ibid., XXVI. 435. (Speech by Robespierre on the constitution, May 10, 1793.) "What were our usages and pretended laws other than a code of impertinence and baseness, where contempt of men was subject to a sort of tariff, and graduated according to regulations as odd as they were numerous? To despise and be despised, to cringe in order to rule, slaves and tyrants in turn, now kneeling before a master, now trampling the people under foot—such was the ambition of all of us, so long as we were men of birth or well educated men, whether common folks or fashionable folks, lawyers or financiers, pettifoggers or wearing swords."—Archives Nationales, F7, 31167. (Report of the observatory Chaumont, Nivose 10, year II.)—"Boolean's effigy, placed in the college of Lisle, has been lowered to the statues of the saints, the latter being taken out of their niches. There is now no kind of distinction. Saints and authors are of the same class."]
[Footnote 2145: Buchez et Roux., 296. ("Institutions" by Saint-Just.)—Meillan, "Memoires," p. 17.—Anne Plumptre, "A narrative of three years' residence in France, from 1802 to 1805," II., 96. At Marseilles: "The two great crimes charged on those who doomed to destruction, were here as elsewhere, wealth and aristocracy... It had been decreed by the Terrorists that no person could have occasion for more than two hundred livres a year, and that no income should be permitted to exceed that sum."]
[Footnote 2146: Archives Nationales, F7, 4437. (Address of the people's club of Caisson (Gard), Messidor 7, year II.) "The Bourgeoisie, the merchants, the large land-owners have all the pretension of the ex-nobles. The law provides no means for opening the eyes of the common people in relation to these new tyrants. The club desires that the revolutionary tribunal should be empowered to condemn this proud class of individuals to a prompt partial confinement. The people would then see that they had committed a misdemeanor and would withdraw that sort of respect in which they hold them." A note in the hand-writing of Couthon: "Left to the decision of popular commissions."]
[Footnote 2147: Gouvernor Morris, in a letter of January 4, 1796, says that French capitalists have been financially ruined by assignats, and physically by the guillotine.—Buchez et Roux, XXX., 26. (Notes written by Robespierre in June, 1793.) "Internal dangers come from the bourgeois... who are our enemies? The vicious and the rich."]
[Footnote 2148: Narrative by M. Sylvester de Sacy (May 23, 1873): His father owned a farm bringing in four thousand francs per annum; the farmer offered him four thousand francs in assignats or a hog; M. de Sacy took the hog.]
[Footnote 2149: Buchez et Roux, XXXI., 441. (Report by Cambon on the institution of the grand livre of public debt, August 15, 1793.)]
[Footnote 2150: Ibid., XXXI., 311. Report by Saint-Just, February 26, 1794, and decree in accordance therewith, unanimously adopted. See, in particular, article 2.—Moniteur, 12 Ventose, year II. (meeting of the Jacobin club, speech by Collot d'Herbois). "The Convention has declared that prisoners must prove that they were patriots from the 1st of May 1789. When the patriots and enemies of the Revolution shall be fully known, then the property of the former shall be inviolable and held sacred, while that of the latter will be confiscated for the benefit of the republic."]
[Footnote 2151: Buchez et Roux, XXVI., 455 (Session of the Jacobin Club, May 10, 1793, speech by Robespierre.)—Ibid., (Report by Saint-Just, Feb. 26, 1794.) "He who has shown himself an enemy of his country cannot be one of its proprietors. Only he has patrimonial rights who has helped to free it."]
[Footnote 2152: Buchez et Roux, XXXI., 93 and 130. (Speech by Robespierre on property, and the declaration of rights adopted by the Jacobin club.) Decree of Sept. 3, 1793 (articles 13 and 14).]
[Footnote 2153: Moniteur, XXII., 719. (Report by Cambon, Frimaire 6, year III.) "At Bordeaux Raba has been sentenced to pay a fine of 1,200,000 francs, Pechotte to pay 500,000 francs, Martin-Martin to 300,000 francs."—Cf. Rodolphe Reuss, "Seligmann Alexandre ou les Tribulations d'un israelite de Strasbourg."]
[Footnote 2154: Ibid., XVIII., 486. (Report by Cambon, Frimaire 1, year II.) "The egotists who, some time ago, found it difficult to pay for the national domains they had acquired from the Republic, even in assignats, now bring us their gold... Collectors of the revenue who had buried their gold have come and offered to pay what they owe the nation in ingots of gold and silver. These have been refused, the Assembly having decreed the confiscation of these objects."]
[Footnote 2155: Decree of Brumaire 23, year II. On taxes and confiscations in the provinces see M. de Martel, "Etude sur Fouche et Pieces authentiques servant a l'histoire de la revolution a Strasbourg." And further on the details of this operation at Troyes.—Meillan, 90: "At Bordeaux, merchants were heavily taxed, not on account of their incivism, but on account of their wealth."]
[Footnote 2156: Decree of March 7-11, 1793.]
[Footnote 2157: Moniteur, XVIII., 274, decrees of Brumaire 4, and ibid, 305, decree of Brumaire 9, year II., establishing equal partition of inheritances with retroactive effect to July 14, 1789. Adulterous bastards are excepted. The reporter of the bill, Cambaceres, laments this regrettable exception.]
[Footnote 2158: Rights of inheritance allowed to the descendants of a deceased person who never enjoyed these rights, but who might have enjoyed them had he been living when they fell to him.—Tr.]
[Footnote 2159: Fenet, "Travaux du Code civil." (Report by Cambaceres on the Code civil, August 9, 1793). The spokesman for the committee that had framed the bill makes excuses for not having deprived the father of all the disposable portion. "The committee believed that such a clause would seriously violate our customs without being of any benefit to society or of any moral advantage. We assured ourselves, moreover, that there should always be a division of property." With respect to donations: "It is repugnant to all ideas of beneficence to allow donations to the rich. Nature is averse to the making of such gifts so long as our eyes dwell on misery and misfortune. These affecting considerations have determined us to fix a point, a sort of maximum, which prohibits gifts on the part of those who have reached that point."]
[Footnote 2160: Moniteur, XII., 730, (June 22, 1792), speech by Lamarque.—But this principle is encountered everywhere. "Equality, indeed, (is) the final aim of social art." (Condorcet, 'Tableau des progres de l'esprit humain," II., 59.—"We desired," writes Baudot, "to apply to politics the equality which the Gospel awards to Christians." (Quinet, "Revolution Francaise, II., 407.)]
[Footnote 2161: Buchez et Roux, XXXV, 296 (The words of Saint-Just.)—Moniteur, XVIII, 505 (Ordinance of the Paris Commune, Frimaire 3, year II). "Wealth and Poverty must alike disappear under the regime of equality."]
[Footnote 2162: Ib. XXXV, 296 ("Institutions" by Saint-Just). "A man is not made for trades, nor for a workhouse nor for an alms-house; all this is frightful."—Ibid., XXXI., 312. (Report of Saint-Just, Ventose 8, year II.) "Let all Europe see that you will not allow a miserable man on French territory!... Happiness is a new idea in Europe."]
[Footnote 2163: Ib. XXXV, 296 ("Institutions" by Saint-Just.)]
[Footnote 2164: Moniteur, XX, 444 ( Report by Barere, Floreal 22, year II). "Mendicity is incompatible with popular government."]
[Footnote 2165: Ib., XIX., 568. (Report by Saint-Just, Ventose 8, year II.)]
[Footnote 2166: Ib., XX, 448 (Rapport by Barere, Floreal 22).]
[Footnote 2167: Ibid., XIX., 568. (Report by Saint-Just, Ventose 8, and decree of Ventose 13.) "The Committee of Public Safety will report on the means of indemnifying the unfortunate with property belonging to the enemies of the Revolution."]
[Footnote 2168: Ibid., XIX., 484. (Report by Barere, Ventose 21, year II.)—Ibid., XX., 445. (Report by Barere, Floreal 22, year II.)—Decrees on public assistance, June 28, 1793, July 25, 1793, Frimaire 2, and Floreal 22, year II.)—this principle, moreover, was set forth in the Constitution of 1793. "Public help is a sacred obligation; society owes a subsistence to unfortunate citizens, whether by providing work for them, or by ensuring the means of existence to those who are not in a condition to work."—Archives Nationales, AF. II., 39. The character of this measure is very clearly expressed in the following circular of the Committee of Public Safety to its representatives on mission in the departments, Ventose, year II. "A summary act was necessary to put the aristocracy down. The national Convention has struck the blow. Virtuous indigence had to recover the property which crime had encroached upon. The national Convention has proclaimed its rights. A general list of all prisoners should be sent to the Committee of General Security, charged with deciding on their fate. The Committee of Public Safety will receive the statement of the indigent in each commune so as to regulate what is due to them. Both these proceedings demand the utmost dispatch and should go together. It is necessary that terror and justice be brought to bear on all points at once. The Revolution is the work of the people and it is time they should have the benefit of it."]
[Footnote 2169: Moniteur, XX., 449. (Report by Barere, Floreal 22, year II.)]
[Footnote 2170: Decree of April 2-5, 1793.]
[Footnote 2171: Moniteur, XVIII., 505. (Orders of Fouche and Collet d'Herbois, dated at Lyons and communicated to the commune of Paris, Frimaire 3, year II.)—De Martel, "Etude sur Fouche," 132. Orders of Fouche on his mission in the Nievre, Sept. 19, 1793. "There shall be established in each district town a Committee of Philanthropy, authorized to levy on the rich a tax proportionate to the number of the indigent."]
[Footnote 2172: Decree of April 2-5, 1793. "There shall be organized in each large commune a guard of citizens selected from the least fortunate. These citizens shall be armed and paid at the expense of the Republic."]
[Footnote 2173: Moniteur, XX., 449. (Report of Barere, Floreal 22, year II.)]
[Footnote 2174: Ibid., XIX., 689. (Report by Saint-Just, Ventose 23, year II.) "We spoke of happiness. It is not the happiness of Persepolis we have offered to you. It is that of Sparta or Athens in their best days, the happiness of virtue, that of comfort and moderation, the happiness which springs from the enjoyment of the necessary without the superfluous, the luxury of a cabin and of a field fertilized by your own hands. A cart, a thatched roof affording shelter from the frosts, a family safe from the lubricity of a robber—such is happiness!"]
[Footnote 2175: Buchez et Roux, XXXI., 402. (Constitution of 1793.)]
[Footnote 2176: Ibid. XXXV., 310. ("Institutions", by Saint-Just.)]
[Footnote 2177: Ibid., XXVI., 93 and 131. (Speech by Robespierre on property, April 24, 1793, and declaration of rights adopted by the Jacobin Club.)—Mallet-Dupan, "Memoires," I., 401. (Address of a deputation from Gard.) "Material wealth is no more the special property of any one member of the social body than base metal stamped as a circulating medium."]
[Footnote 2178: Moniteur, VIII., 452. (Speech by Hebert in the Jacobin Club, Brumaire 26, year II.) "Un Sejour en France de 1792 a 1795," p.218. (Amiens, Oct. 4, 1794.) "While waiting this morning at a shop door I overheard a beggar bargaining for a slice of pumpkin. Unable to agree on the price with the woman who kept the shop he pronounced her 'corrupted with aristocracy.' 'I defy you to prove it!' she replied. But, as she spoke, she turned pale and added, 'Your civism is beyond all question—but take your pumpkin.' 'Ah,' returned the beggar, 'what a good republican!'"]
[Footnote 2179: Ibid., XVIII., 320. (Meeting of Brumaire 11, year II. Report by Barere.)—Meillan, 17. Already, before the 31st May: "The tribune resounded with charges against monopoly, every man being a monopolist who was not reduced to living on daily wages or on alms."]
[Footnote 2180: Decrees of July 26, 1793, Sept. 11 and 29; Brumaire 11, and Ventose 6, year II.]
[Footnote 2181: Moniteur, XVIII., 359. "Brumaire 16, year II. Sentence of death of Pierre Gourdier, thirty-six years of age, stock-broker, resident in Paris, rue Bellefond, convicted of having monopolized and concealed in his house a large quantity of bread, in order to bread scarcity in the midst of abundance." He had gastritis and could eat nothing but panada made with toast, and the baker who furnished this gave him thirty pieces at a time (Wallon, II., 155).]
[Footnote 2182: Journal of the debates of the Jacobin Club, No. 532, Brumaire 20, year II. (Plan of citizen Dupre, presented in the Convention by a deputation of the Arcis Club.)—Dauban, "Paris en 1794," p. 483 (a project similar to the former, presented to the Committee of Public Safety by the Jacobin Club of Montereau, Thermidor, year II.)]
[Footnote 2183: These proposals should come to haunt western civilization for a long time. (SR.)]
[Footnote 2184: Buchez et Roux, XXXV., 272. ("Institutions," by Saint-Just.)]
[Footnote 2185: These ideas were still powerful even before Taine wrote these words in 1882. The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations cites a declaration made by 47 anarchists on trial after their uprising in Lyons in 1870: "We wish, in a word, equality—equality in fact as corollary, or rather, as primordial condition of liberty. From each according to his faculties, to each according to his needs; that is what we wish sincerely and energetically."]
[Footnote 2186: Buchez et Roux, XXXI, 273, (Report by Robespierre, Pluviose17, year II. (7 Feb. 1794).]
[Footnote 2187: Moniteur, XIX (Rapport by Barere, Ventose 21, an II). "You should detect and combat federalism in all your institutions, as your natural enemy....A grand central establishment for all the work of the Republic is an effective means against federalism."—Buchez et Roux, XXXI, 351, et XXXII, 316 (Rapports by Saint-Just, Ventose 23 et Germinal 26, year II). "Immorality is a federalism in the civil state...Civil federalism, by isolating all parts of the state, has dried up abundance."]
[Footnote 2188: Decree of Germinal 26-29, year II. "Financial companies are and hereby remain suppressed. All bankers, commission merchants, and other persons, are forbidden to form any establishment of this order under any pretext or under any denomination."]
[Footnote 2189: "Memoires de Carnot," I., 278 (Report by Carnot). "That is not family life. If there are local privileges there will soon be individual privileges and local aristocracy will bring along in its train the aristocracy of inhabitants."]
[Footnote 2190: Moniteur, XIX., 683 (Rapport by Barere, Ventose 21, year II).—This report should be read in full to comprehend the communistic and centralizing spirit of the Jacobins. (Undoubtedly Lenin, during his years in Paris, had read Taine's footnote and asked the national library for a copy of this rapport. SR.)]
[Footnote 2191: Fenet, "Travaux du Code civil," 105 (Rapports by Cambaceres, August 9, 1793 and September 9, 1794).—Decrees of September 20, 1793 and Floreal 4, year II (On divorce).—Cf. "Institutions," by Saint-Just (Buchez et Roux, XXXV, 302). "A man and woman who love each other are married; if they have no children they may keep their relationship secret."]
[Footnote 2192: This article of the Jacobin program, like the others, has its practical result.—"At Paris, in the twenty-seven months after the promulgation of the law of September, 1792, the courts granted five thousand nine hundred and ninety-four divorces, and in year VI, the number of divorces exceeded the marriages." (Glasson, le Mariage civil et le Divorce, 51.)—"The number of foundlings which, in 1790, in France, did not exceed twenty-three thousand, is now (year X.) more than sixty-three thousand. "Statistique de la Sarthe," by Auvray, prefect, year, X.)—In the Lot-et-Garonne (Statistique, by Peyre, prefet, year X ), more than fifteen hundred foundlings are counted: "this extraordinary number increased during the Revolution through the too easy admission of foundlings into the asylums, through the temporary sojourning of soldiers in their homes, through the disturbance of every moral and religious principle."—"It is not rare to find children of thirteen and fourteen talking and acting in a way that would have formerly disgraced a young man of twenty." (Moselle, Analyse, by Ferriere.)—"The children of workmen are idle and insubordinate; some indulge in the most shameful conduct against their parents;" others try stealing and use the coarsest language." (Meurthe, Statistique, by Marquis, prefet.)—Cf. Anne Plumptre (A Narrative of three years' residence in France from 1802 to 1805, I. 436). "You would not believe it, Madame, said a gardener to her at Nimes, that during the Revolution we dared not scold our children for their faults. Those who called themselves patriots regarded it as against the fundamental principles of liberty to correct children. This made them so unruly that, very often, when a parent presumed to scold its child the latter would tell him to mind his business, adding, 'we are free and equal, the Republic is our only father and mother; if you are not satisfied, I am. Go where you like it better.' Children are still saucy. It will take a good many years to bring them back to minding.']
[Footnote 2193: Buchez et Roux, XXXII., 364 (Report by Robespierre, Floreal 8, year II.)]
[Footnote 2194: Buchez et Roux, XXXII., 385—(Address of a Jacobin deputation to the Convention, Floreal 27, year II.)—At Bayeux, the young girl who represented Liberty, had the following inscription on her breast or back: "Do not make of me an instrument of licentiousness." (Gustave Flaubert, family souvenirs.)]
[Footnote 2195: Buchez et Roux, XXXI., 415. (Report by Fabre d'Eglantine, October 6, 1793.)—(Gregoire, "Memoires," I., 341.) "The new calendar was invented by Romme in order to get rid of Sunday. This was his object; he admitted it to me."]
[Footnote 2196: Ibid., XXXII., 274. (Report by Robespierre, Floreal 18, year II.) "National Festivals form an essential part of public education.... A system of national festivals is the most powerful means of regeneration."]
[Footnote 2197: Ibid., XXXVIII., 335. Marat's heart, placed on a table in the Cordeliers Club, was an object of religious reverence.—(Gregoire, "Memoires," I., 341.) "In some schools the pupils were obliged to make the sign of the cross at the names of Marat, Lazowski, etc."]
[Footnote 2198: Comte de Martel, "Etude sur Fouche," 137. Fete at Nevers, on the inaguration of a bust of Brutus.—Ibid., 222, civic festival at Nevers in honor of valor and morals.—Dauban, "Paris en 1794." Programme of the fete of the supreme Being at Sceaux.]
[Footnote 2199: An expression by Rabaut Saint-Etienne.]
[Footnote 21100: Ibid., XXXII., 373 (Report by Robespierre, Floreal 15, year II.)—Danton had expressed precisely the same opinion, supported by the same arguments, at the meeting of Frimaire 22, year II. (Moniteur, XVIII, 654.) "Children first belong to the Republic before belonging to their parents. Who will assure me that these children, inspired by parental egoism, will not become dangerous to the Republic? What do we care for the ideas of an individual alongside of national ideas?... Who among us does not know the danger of this constant isolation? It is in the national schools that the child must suck republican milk! .... The Republic is one and indivisible. Public instruction must likewise relate to this center of unity."]
[Footnote 21101: Decree of Vendemaire 30 and Brumaire 7, year II.—Cf. Sauzay, VI., 252, on the application of this decree in the provinces.]
[Footnote 21102: Albert Duruy, 2L 'Instruction publique et la Revolution,2 164, to 172' (extracts from various republican spelling-books and catechisms).—Decree of Frimaire 29, year II., section I., art. I, 83; section II., art. 2; section III., arts. 6 and 9.]
[Footnote 21103: Moniteur, XVIII., 653. (Meeting of Frimaire 22, speech by Bouquir, reporter.)]
[Footnote 21104: Moniteur, XVIII., 351-359. (Meeting of Brumaire 15, year II., report by Chenier.) "You have made laws—create habits.... You can apply to the public instruction of the nation the same course that Rousseau follows in 'Emile.' "]
[Footnote 21105: The words of Bouquier, reporter. (Meeting of Frimaire 22, year II.)]
[Footnote 21106: Buchez et Roux, XXIV, 57 (Plan by Le Peletier de Saint-Fargeau, read by Robespierre at the Convention, July 13, 1793.)—Ibid., 35. (Draft of a decree by the same hand.)]
[Footnote 21107: Ibid., XXX., 229. ("Institutions," by Saint-Just.)]
[Footnote 21108: Buchez et Roux, XXXI., 261. (Meeting of Nivose 17.) On the committee presenting the final draft of the decrees on public instruction the Convention adopts the following article: "All boys who, on leaving the primary schools of instruction, do not devote themselves to tillage, will be obliged to learn some science, art or occupation useful to society. Otherwise, on reaching twenty, they will be deprived of citizens' rights for ten years, and the same penalty will be laid on their father, mother, tutor or guardian."]
[Footnote 21109: Decree of Prairial 13, year II.]
[Footnote 21110: Langlois, "Souvenirs de l'Ecole de Mars."]
[Footnote 21111: Buchez et Roux, XXXII., 355. (Report by Robespierre, Floreal 18, year II.)]
[Footnote 21112: Moniteur, XVIII., 326. (Meeting of the Commune, Brumaire 11, year II.) the commissary announces that, at Fontainebleau and other places, "he has established the system of equality in the prisons and places of confinement, where the rich and the poor partake of the same food."—Ibid., 210. (Meeting of the Jacobins, Vendemiaire 29, year II. Speech by Laplance on his mission to Gers.) "Priests had every comfort in their secluded retreats; the sans-culottes in the prisons slept on straw. The former provided me with mattresses for the latter."—Ibid., XVIII., 445. (Meeting of the convention, Brumaire 26, year II.) "The Convention decrees that the food of persons kept in places of confinement shall be simple and the same for all, the rich paying for the poor."]
[Footnote 21113: Archives Nationales. (AF. II., 37, order of Lequinio, Saintes, Nivose 1, year II.) "Citizens generally in all communes, are requested to celebrate the day of the decade by a fraternal banquet which, served without luxury or display... will render the man bowed down with fatique insensible to his forlorn condition; which will fill the soul of the poor and unfortunate with the sentiment of social equality and raise man up to the full sense of his dignity; which will suppress with the rich man the slightest feeling of pride and extinguish in the public functionary all germs of haughtiness and aristocracy."]
[Footnote 21114: Archives Nationales, AF. II., ii., 48 (Act of Floreal 25, year II.) "the Committee of Public Safety request David, representative of the people, to present his views and plans in relation to modifying the present national costume, so as to render it appropriate to republican habits and the character of the Revolution."—Ibid., (Act of Prairial 5, year II.) for engraving and coloring twenty thousand impressions of the design for a civil uniform, and six thousand impressions for the three designs for a military, judicial and legislative uniform.]
[Footnote 21115: An identical change took, strangely enough and as caused by some hidden force, place in Denmark in the seventies. (SR.)]
[Footnote 21116: This is now the case in the entire Western 'democratic' sphere, in newspapers, schools, and on television. (SR.)]
[Footnote 21117: Ibid, XXXI., 271. (Report by Robespierre, Pluviose 1, year II.) "This sublime principle supposes a preference for public interests over all private interests; from which it follows that the love of country supposes again, or produces, all the virtues." "As the essence of a republic or of democracy is equality, it follows that love of country necessarily comprises a love of equality." "The soul of the Republic is virtue, equality."—Lavalette, "Memoirs," I., 254. (Narrated by Madame Lavalette.) She was compelled to attend public festivals, and, every month, the patriotic processions. "I was rudely treated by my associates, the low women of the quarter; the daughter of an emigre, of a marquis, or of an imprisoned mother, ought not to be allowed the honor of their company;.... it was all wrong that she was not made an apprentice.... Hortense de Beauharnais was apprenticed to her mother's seamstress, while Eugene was put with a carpenter in the Faubourg St. Germain." The prevailing dogmatism has a singular effect with simple-minded people. (Archives Nationals, AF. II., 135. petition of Ursule Riesler, servant to citizen Estreich and arrested along with him, addressed to Garneri, agent of the Committee of Public Safety. She begs citizen Garnerin to interest himself in obtaining her freedom. She will devote her life to praying to the Supreme Being for him, since he will redeem her life. He is to furnish her, moreover, with the means for espousing a future husband, a genuine republican, by who she is pregnant, and who would not allow her to entertain any idea of fanatical capers.]
CHAPTER II. REACTIONARY CONCEPT OF THE STATE.
I. Reactionary concept of the State.
Reactionary concept of the State.—Analogy between this idea of the State and that of antiquity.—Difference between antique and modern society.—Changed circumstances.
The Jacobin theory can then be summarized in the following points:
* The speculative creation of a curtailed type of human being.
* An effort to adapt the living man to this type.
* The interference of public authority in every branch of public endeavor.
* Constraints put upon labor, trade and property, upon the family and education, upon worship, habits, customs and sentiments.
* The sacrifice of the individual to the community.
* The omnipotence of the State.
No theory could be more reactionary since it moves modern man back to a type of society which he, eighteen centuries ago, had already passed through and left behind.
During the historical era proceeding our own, and especially in the old Greek or Latin cities, in Rome or Sparta, which the Jacobins take for their models, human society was shaped after the pattern of an army or convent. In a convent as in an army, one idea, absorbing and unique, predominates:
* The aim of the monk is to please God at any sacrifice.
* The soldier makes every sacrifice to obtain a victory.
Accordingly, each renounces every other desire and entirely abandons himself, the monk to his rules and the soldier to his drill. In like manner, in the antique world, two preoccupations were of supreme importance. In the first place, the city had its gods who were both its founders and protectors: it was therefore obliged to worship these in the most reverent and particular manner; otherwise, they abandoned it. The neglect of any insignificant rite might offend them and ruin it. In the second place, there was incessant warfare, and the spoils of war were atrocious; on a city being taken every citizen might expect to be killed or maimed, or sold at auction, and see his children and wife sold to the highest bidder. In short, the antique city, with its acropolis of temples and its fortified citadel surrounded by implacable and threatening enemies, resembles for us the institution of the Knights of St. John on their rocks at Rhodes or Malta, a religious and military confraternity encamped around a church.—Liberty, under such conditions, is out of the question: public convictions are too imperious; public danger is too great. With this pressure upon him, and thus hampered, the individual gives himself up to the community, which takes full possession of him, because, to maintain its own existence, it needs the whole man. Henceforth, no one may develop apart and for himself; no one may act or think except within fixed lines. The type of Man is distinctly and clearly marked out, if not logically at least traditionally; each life, as well as each portion of each life must conform to this type; otherwise public security is compromised: any falling off in gymnastic education weakens the army; passing the images of the gods and neglecting the usual libation draws down celestial vengeance on the city. Consequently, to prevent all deviations, the State, absolute master, exercises unlimited jurisdiction; no freedom whatever is left to the individual, no portion of himself is reserved to himself, no sheltered corner against the strong hand of public force, neither his possessions, his children, his personality, his opinions or his conscience. If, on voting days, he shares in the sovereignty, he is subject all the rest of the year, even to his private sentiments. Rome, to serve these ends, had two censors. One of the archons of Athens was inquisitor of the faith. Socrates was put to death for not believing in the gods in which the city believed.—In reality, not only in Greece and in Rome, but in Egypt, in China, in India, in Persia, in Judea, in Mexico, in Peru, during the first stages of civilization, the principle of human communities is still that of gregarious animals: the individual belongs to his community the same as the bee to its hive and the ant to its ant-hill; he is simply an organ within an organism. Under a variety of structures and in diverse applications authoritative socialism alone prevails.