Names: Dom Occhiato Zaeleigh Barela, Hunter Perratt
1. All group members read the document, then each group member annotate twice per doc.
2. Discuss and then thoroughly answer the questions that follow each document
Document A: Reign of Terror
The Terror Grips France
Foreign armies were not the only enemies of the French Republic. The Jacobins had thousands of enemies within France itself
These included peasants who were horrified by the king’s execution, priests who would not accept government control, and rival leaders who were stirring up rebellion in the provinces. How to contain and control these enemies became a central issue.
Robespierre Assumes Control
In the early months of 1793, one Jacobin leader, Maximilian Robespierre, slowly gained power. Robespierre and his supporters set out to build a “republic of virtue” by wiping out every trace of France’s past. Firm believers in reason, they changed the calendar, dividing the year into 12 months of 30 days and renaming each month. This calendar had no Sundays because the radicals considered religion oldfashioned and dangerous. They even closed all churches in Paris, and cities and towns all over France soon did the same.
In July 1793, Robespierre became leader of the Committee of Public Safety. For the next year, Robespierre governed France virtually as a dictator, and the period of his rule became known as the Reign of Terror. The Committee of Public Safety’s chief task was to protect the Revolution from its enemies. Under Robespierre’s leadership, the committee often had these “enemies” tried in the morning and guillotined in the afternoon. Robespierre justified his use of terror by suggesting that it helped French citizens to remain true to the ideals of the Revolution. . .
Thousands of unknown people were also sent to their death, often on the flimsiest of charges. For example, an 18yearold youth was sentenced to die for cutting down a tree that had been planted as a symbol of liberty.
Perhaps as many as 40,000 were executed during the Terror. About 85 percent were peasants or members of the urban poor or middle class—for whose benefit the Revolution had been launched.
Source: Modern World History: Patterns of Interaction. Evanston, IL: McDougal Littell (2006), pp. 226227.
Reign of Terror Questions
1. According to this source, why did the Jacobins have so many enemies? The jacobins had many enemies because many people did not agree with the revolution, and many of them were their enemies because of the kings death.
2. Robespierre and his supporters created a new calendar. Why would they want to wipe out “every trace of France’s past?”
Maybe because they did not like frances past at all and they wanted to start a new period. The also changed the calendars by making 30 days 12 months and no sundays because they thought religion was old fashioned and dangerous, this shows that they wanted to start a new period.
3. According to Document A, Robespierre believed terror helped French citizens remain “true to the ideals of the Revolution.” What were the ideals of the French Revolution? (Use what you already know about the French Revolution to answer this question). I think the ideals of the French Revolutions were laws the Robespierre and his followers abided. Liberty, Equality, Fraternity.
Based on Document A, do you think the Committee of Public Safety protected the Revolution from its enemies? Circle one:
Explain your answer.
No they did protect the revolution from their enemies. With Robespierre in power, it was known as the “reign of terror”. He really enforced his power with an “iron fist”. the document says that their enemies were usually tried in the morning and guillotined in the ...
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