The Great Terror in France

(202 words)
  • Editors

Historical Context Note

Responding to the anti-revolutionary revolts across the country, and the threat of invasion, the Committee of Public Safety directed by Carnot oversaw a complete reform of the army, including mass conscription, which allowed the Convention to put down local insurgencies and defeat the allies at Fleurus on 26 June 1794. The achievement was a remarkable victory for the will of the people and the discipline imposed by Carnot. However, draconian measures were taken to silence opposition: the Law of 22 Prairial II (10 June 1794) abolished the right of defence before the Revolutionary Tribunal and allowed conviction by “patriotic intuition” or “moral proof”. Trials took place in batches of 50 at a time. In 49 days 1400 men and …

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Editors. "The Great Terror in France". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 22 December 2007
[, accessed 09 October 2015.]

Related Groups

  1. French Revolution and French Revolutionary Wars: 1789-1802