Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Peaceful French Revolution

It seemed that the Revolution was won! And peacefully too!
(see here and here.)

Indeed, even a member of the royal family joined the National Assembly: Louis-Philippe Joseph II Duc d’Orleans, first cousin of King Louis XVI. (Remember his name, for Louis-Philippe Joseph II Duc d’Orleans played an important role in the events to come.)

However, King Louis XVI was not so quick to recognize France’s new, self-proclaimed government. Where did it put him? Where did it leave his son, the dauphin and future King of France? As he awaited the new constitution, he grew anxious of the rumble back in Paris. He sent troops to surround the city.

Parisians were hungry and growing desperate. In July of 1788, France’s harvest had been wiped out by a hail storm. Cold temperatures and frost lasting well into the spring of 1789 stamped out the harvest yet again. With grain scarce, the price of bread soared so high that the poor could not feed themselves.

Now they watched as the king's weapons were trained right on them!

Stay posted for more on the French Revolution as we march toward July 14th and the taking of the Bastille.

Painting of Louis-Philippe Joseph II Duc d'Orleans, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Towle, Sarah B. Time Traveler Paris Tours: Beware Madame La Guillotine, in development.

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