The Fall of Robespierre: 24 Hours in Revolutionary Paris (Hardback)Colin Jones (author)
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Charting the twenty-four hours that marked a major turning point in the French Revolution with colourful detail and mounting tension, Professor Colin Jones provides a deeply researched hour-by-hour breakdown of the Thermidorian Reaction and the fall of Maximilien Robespierre.
The day of 9 Thermidor (27 July 1794) is universally acknowledged as a major turning-point in the history of the French Revolution. At 12.00 midnight, Maximilien Robespierre, the most prominent member of the Committee of Public Safety which had for more than a year directed the Reign of Terror, was planning to destroy one of the most dangerous plots that the Revolution had faced. By 12.00 midnight at the close of the day, following a day of uncertainty, surprises, upsets and reverses, his world had been turned upside down.
He was an outlaw, on the run, and himself wanted for conspiracy against the Republic. He felt that his whole life and his Revolutionary career were drawing to an end. As indeed they were. He shot himself shortly afterwards. Half-dead, the guillotine finished him off in grisly fashion the next day. The Fall of Robespierre provides an hour-by-hour analysis of these 24 hours.
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Number of pages: 592
Weight: 838 g
Dimensions: 240 x 160 x 50 mm
'A brilliant hour-by-hour recreation... He has a marvellous eye for colour: the sweat and fear in the Parisian prisons, the exhausted paranoia of the government committees, the stench of the guillotined bodies in the death pits outside the city. He is excellent on the contingency of political history... And, above all, he is brilliant on the psychology of politics, the way the mood of an assembly can switch in a moment with devastating consequences.' - Dominic Sandbrook, The Sunday Times
'Jones insists that to understand 9 Thermidor it's necessary to dig down to the level of "infinitely small" details. In his admirable account he meticulously reconstructs the day on an hour-by-hour basis, crisscrossing the city as he does so.' - Gerard deGroot, The Times
'Colin Jones, a professor of history at Queen Mary University of London, handles a huge amount of material with skill and verve. He creates an extraordinarily vivid minute-by-minute portrait of Paris and its people on that pivotal day...' - Constance Craig Smith, Daily Mail
'Only by getting "up close" and drilling down into the "infinitely small" details of the revolutionary process', its author insists, can the day's course and outcome be understood. And for once this counsel of perfection can be put into practice.' - John Adamson, Literary Review
'Vital, incisive, revelatory, The Fall of Robespierre offers a crisis anatomised, "by the map and by the clock." Its close-focus intensity makes us question everything we thought we knew about the bloody events of Thermidor Year II. It takes us to the place, to the instant, to the heartbeat of revolution in the making.' - Hilary Mantel
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