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The Reign Of Maximilien De Robespierre

1015 words - 5 pages

Isn’t a revolution supposed to help and protect people instead of killing them? During the French Revolution, an estimate of 20,000 to 40,000 people died. This was a result of what we call the Reign of Terror. The Reign of Terror was an 18 month period from January 1793 to July 1794. The reason why there were so many deaths within the French Revolution time was because France was dealing with external threats and internal threats. The external threats were the neighboring countries that were in the alliance with Austria and Prussia to stop the spread of the French Revolution. The internal threats were the counterrevolutionaries who were against the revolution and wanted the old government back. The Reign of Terror was established, and ran by Maximilien de Robespierre, to deal with the situation of the French Revolution and all of its threats. Now the question is: “Was this 18 month period reasonable to protect France’s people?” The Reign of Terror was not justified for three reasons: the external threats did not deserve the treatment they received, the internal threats were dealt with non-humane measures, and the methods used were outrageous.
The external threats formed an alliance to attack France to prevent the French Revolution from spreading to their countries. Along their mission to stop the spread of the French Revolution, they received harsh treatment that goes beyond being human. These countries were just looking out for their rulers’ power because they did not want to lose their power and die due to the spread. As stated in Document A, “Government denies legal counsel to accused enemies of the revolution. The number of government executions sharply increases. Two-thirds of all executions during the Reign of Terror occur in June and July of 1794.” The enemies of the revolution would consist of the external and internal threats to the French Revolution. At this time is when the most executions happen throughout the entire Reign of Terror. If you were an external threat and you were caught by the government then you were immediately sent to the guillotine without a trial. This is a cruel punishment without evidence or reason. They could just say you were an enemy and you would be given the death sentence. The neighboring countries did not deserve to be immediately sentenced to death if captured, but this was not the worst or disrespectful treatment in the Reign of Terror because that belongs to the counterrevolutionaries.
The internal threats were the counterrevolutionaries that wanted to end the French Revolution and revert back to the old ways with a king having absolute power. These counterrevolutionaries received the worst treatment throughout the Reign of Terror. “France government representatives…carried it mockingly, upside down on a cart, offering it to passers-by to spit on” (Document C). To mock one’s religion, especially one that makes up almost the entire population of the country, is disrespectful on every level. Doing this to...

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