How serious was the radical threat facing pitt in the period: 1789-1801

1204 Words Dec 1st, 2013 5 Pages
How Serious Was the Radical Threat Facing Pitt In The Period 1789-1801?
The French revolution broke out in 1789, and while at first Britain was pleased and welcomed the changes that the revolution brought to France (i.e. the new constitutional monarchy mirrored Britain's political system in many ways.) Pitt and his government began to become worried when the revolution in France stepped up a gear and became more extreme, they obviously didn't want a repeat of the French experience in Britain. The outcome of the revolution was inevitable and in 1792 when France became a republic, it was also the start of a period of time (1793-1794) that became known as 'revolutionary terror'. Revolutionary terror is essentially force used or implemented
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The combinations act of 1799 and 1800 effectively made trade unions illegal.
There were a vast number of reasons as to why the government was frightened about the possibility of a revolution. In 1791, the aforementioned Thomas Paine published hid "The Rights Of Man" which basically said that he supported the actions of the French revolution and advocated a greater political liberty. This led to The Priestley riots which took place in Birmingham against supporters of reform and nonconformists. Then in 1792, the London corresponding society was formed which encouraged correspondence between supporters of political liberty, this led to more correspondence societies being formed and by 1795, the London unit had over 5000 members. The Fears of revolutionary action in Britain were again increased in 1793 when a trial of radical reformers was held in Scotland. The fear of revolution on the streets of Britain was now great, so the last thing the government needed was the Royal Navy sailors mutinying at Spithead and the Nore in 1797, even though this was over wages, it led to more fear, this time fear of a revolution in the armed forces. In 1798 a rebellion in Ireland was led by the United Irishmen, a secret society which had links with the French revolutionary government. Theobald Wolfe Tone, a leading United Irishman, was an officer in the French army. It took a considerable military effort to subdue the rebellion.
Most discontent and radical protest was more to do with the

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