Essay Causes of the Reign of Terror

1371 Words Oct 26th, 2012 6 Pages
The reign of terror was a period of violence in which occurred from 1793- 1794 after the strong onset of the French Revolution. It was a time of fierceness and anger, resulting in the deaths of thousands of people living in France at that period of time. The terror followed the trial and execution of King Louis XVI in 1793 and was incited by the conflict between the Girondins and Jacobins. Soon after, King Louis’ wife, Marie Antoinette, was executed in the guillotine- the new form of constitutionalist justice. Many of the people who were executed during this period of time were not aristocrats, but ordinary people who may have only stated a critical thought or judgment going against the revolutionary government. Many believe that once …show more content…
A number of people living in France, including nobles, priests and the bourgeoisie fled the country during the French Revolution, abandoning the struggle the country was going through. Emigrating, they formed armed groups and moved to neighboring countries, acquiring the name of émigrés. In 1791, legislation against the émigrés was passed by the King stating that anyone caught emigrating would be punished with a death sentence, namely the guillotine. Due to the politics of the time period, France was inevitably drawn to War with Austria and its allies, including Prussia, declaring War against them on 20 April 1792. Robespierre opposed the occurrence of War due to the fact that it would strengthen the monarchy and the military as well as attract the anger of ordinary people in Austria and its neighbouring countries. The Jacobins increased the size of the army, determined to have more soldiers who demonstrated their patriotism and trained ability effectively. The Republican Army of France dominated the battles and were able to overcome the Austrians, Prussians, British and Spanish- the countries against the revolutionary government, and the strong violence was a large part in why the Reign of Terror began.

Factional disputes in the Convention caused for the replacement of the Girondins

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