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Was Louis’s death necessary?. Could the Revolution have continued with the King alive? Was Louis himself the target or the monarchy as an institution?. Week 8. 1- Introduction: Causes of Louis’s death. Breakdown of trust 1. Flight to Varennes and its influence on public opinion.

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was louis s death necessary

Was Louis’s death necessary?

Could the Revolution have continued with the King alive?

Was Louis himself the target or the monarchy as an institution?

Week 8

1 introduction causes of louis s death
1- Introduction: Causes of Louis’s death

Breakdown of trust

1. Flight to Varennes and its influence on public opinion.

a. Military threat.

b. Émigrés and their influence

2. Reluctance to accept loss of power as exercised by an absolute monarchy.

a. The Constitution.

b. Secret box of letters.

3. Disinterest in the process of change due to his son’s death.

4. Conflagration of economic events.

a. State finances

b. High cost of living.

2 1 death of king necessary for the revolution to progress

2.1- Death of King: necessary for the Revolution to progress?

  • ‘Sans culottes’- uprising?
  • Potential for civil war.
  • Consequences of just imprisonment or exile.
  • Louis alive rendered the Revolution invalid- Robespierre.
  • Previous behaviour- too far to try and reconcile?
2 2 aims and aspirations of the revolution
2.2-Aims and Aspirations of the Revolution
  • 'Liberté' = main slogan and aspiration of the Revolution.
  • Enlightened reformism-contrary to Ancien Régime.
  • Reforms of existing financial and political structures .
  • Creation of ideal of a nation: Abbé Sieyès, Qu'est-ce que le Tiers-État? Pamphlet de 1789
  • Original aim: to create a constitutional monarchy.
  • 26 August 1789, Assembly: ‘la Déclaration des droits de l’homme et du citoyen de 1789’, -preamble to constitution of 1791.

Regenerated Man Gives Thanks to the Supreme Being,

Jacques-Louis Pérée 1794-5

3 reaction to his death in the country
3. Reaction to his death in the country
  • Made and strengthened many enemies – in France and Europe
  • Quick decision by Convention – avoided referendum proposed by Girondins avoidance of civil war by officially dividing the country
  • The republic was really a Parisian idea forced into being by the Sans Culottes – the Provinces were still more traditional
conclusion
Conclusion
  • By early in 1793 Louis XVI’s death was necessary to maintain the momentum of the revolution, although it was not the original aim.
  • Indecision by the Convention would have dangerously weakened them – at risk from Sans Culottes
  • Louis used as a scapegoat for France’s troubles – removal of a symbol of the Ancien Regime
  • Could Louis have survived had he acted differently?