Reign Of Terror Analysis

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The Reign of Terror was a period of the French Revolution characterized by a wave of executions and a distrust of presumed enemies of the state. The French revolution begun mainly because of financial crisis and ended up lasting from 1789 through 1799. Directed by the Committee of Public Safety, the revolutionary government was essentially a war dictatorship, created to rule the country in a national crisis. Among its twelve members were Lazare Carnot, George Couthon, but most importantly, Maximilien Robespierre, its dominant member. The main focus was to eliminate all counter-revolutionary elements such as the ability to leave the country, the right to privacy, and freedom of speech. In doing such, however, 40,000 French citizens were executed.…show more content…
King Louis XVI was the ruler prior to Robespierre. During his time, France conjured the image of royalty and nobles in eccentric gowns and beautiful palaces. This image, however, undermines the harsh economic realities of the era. King Louis XV accumulated huge debts building the famous palace at Versailles and waging wars against his neighbors. Likewise to his Grandfather, Louis XVI continued the profligate spending practices by expanding the military and wasting state funds on lavish parties and social functions. In attempts to quell the debt, he placed a sizable tax on the 3rd estate while the wealthiest groups in France were essentially exempt from it altogether. As the debt grew bigger, the tax revenues were declining rapidly because the peasant classes could simply not keep up. Furthermore, these financial issues were exacerbated by extreme famines throughout the nation. In an attempt to escape his kingly obligations, Louis and his family fled to Austria. His attempts failed as he was caught and tried for treason. The newly named “National Assembly” had forced him to sign the Declaration of rights of Man that was created after he had locked the doors to the palace during the Estates General, but he ended up vetoing every proposal. As a result, on June 21, 1793, Louis was guillotined. In Document F, people are shown rejoicing as his head is displayed in the air. Unfortunately,
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