The French Revolution

The Flight to Varennes
Revolutionary Tradition and Les Mis
Revolution 1789
--The Monarchy
--Tennis Court Oath
--Fall of the Bastille
--October Days
--Declaration of War
--Palace Invaded
--Louis XVI
--Reign of Terror
-- Fall of Robespierre
--At war
1789 in Les Miserables
--The Terror
--The People
--The Students
--The Monarchy
--Place de Concord
--Notre Dame
Daily Sites
--Street Names
--Children's Names and Games
Works Consulted



 The Royal Family Returns to Paris after attempting to flee, 1791 Image from Decaux

As the politics of France evolved in 1790 and 1791, Louis remained somewhat active in the political scene in Paris. He had agreed to many measures of the Assembly which he did not agree with, most notably the Civil Constitution of the Clergy. Louis, who was fiercely loyal to the Catholic Church, resented signing this measure which deprived the clergy of their power and property in France.

He recognized that he and his family would not be safe in France for much longer, and decided to join the other nobles who had emigrated during the first year of the Revolution. In June of 1791, the royal family left Paris in a coach headed towards Belgium. Before leaving Paris, Louis had written a letter to his enemies in the Assembly detailing his complaints about the new constitution and calling for a counterrevolution in Paris.

The King and his family were apprehended in Varennes by the National Guard. They had been alerted to the family's whereabouts when a commoner recognized the King from his picture on an assignat (the French unit of currency at that time). The royal family returned to Paris on June 25th as prisoners of the people they had once controlled.


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