• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

During all the course of the French Revolution the most controversial figure was Maximilien Robespierre.

Extracts from this document...


During all the course of the French Revolution the most controversial figure was Maximilien Robespierre. He is known to most people as the symbol of the Reign of Terror, a short but horrifying period when approximately 17,000 people died in prison in terrible conditions or were executed on the simple suspicion of being a traitor. However other people think of Robespierre as of person with genuine interest in helping the abused. For some reason, Maximilien Robespierre saw it necessary at some stage during 1783 and 1784 to make his methods of promoting nationalism much more extreme and brutal. Perhaps the finger of blame (if blame must be placed) could be pointed to one of Robespierre's main influences, Rousseau. Both were humanitarians, interested in the welfare of all people as well as the French. Maybe his own purity of belief in the Republic of Virtue led him to impatience with others. But still how could such a cruel leader get the support of the people? The answer is that to most of the people that supported him at that time he appeared to be "incorruptible" leader. He set up a political patriot party called The Jacobin club. He was the leader in the Paris Commune, the Convention and the Committee of Public Safety. He declared that dictatorship was necessary after the outbreak of the revolution because of internal dissension and foreign wars. ...read more.


From my point of view Robespierre and Stalin were similar in two ways: they were both paranoid that traitors were everywhere and they both were in favor of "Justified Terror". And as I think this is not the way of ruling the country, I don't think that any of such a rulers have ever had a true support of their nations - the only reason why they stayed in power is because people were scared of being either killed or put into jail. When Robespierre came to power he introduced three types of terror: Political, Religious and Economic. Political terror was mainly about the "Law of Suspects" that I've just said about. The most significant suspects of that law were the Robespierre's closest fellow campaigners such as Danton, Marat and Hebert. The same thing happened to Marie Antoinette and 31 Girondins because they didn't agree to use terror for the good of the Revolution. The best example of the Religious terror is the case of La Vendee where more Catholics were killed than in whole France. It was the most catholic part of the France and during the "Reign of Terror" Catholics were considered as counter revolutionaries as there was a revolutionary religion "Worship of reason" which was based on revolutionary principals (liberty, equality and fraternity) and nature. The economic terror was basically about introducing the Law of General Maximum which meant putting a maximum price on food. ...read more.


He was saying that there were traitors in the Convention itself but when he was asked to name them, he refused. For me that looks like it was a peek of his paranoia. Next day the Convention voted for the arrest of Robespierre and on the 28th of July 1794 he and 22 of his closest supporters were guillotined. I think that there were reasons and a motive for the fall of Robespierre. One of the reasons is that the terror has gone out of control and the motive was his last speech at the Convention. I don't think that Robespierre was a "bloodthirsty maniac" he was too revolutionary purist that he would go to any extends to achieve the perfect Revolutionary society. Probably his extends were further that the patience of the people and that was another reason for the fall of Robespierre. As I said earlier there is no way that the leader of the country could use a "Justified terror" on his own people because I don't think you can think of any moral justification for that. In fact Robespierre never had a complete control of France; actually, his dictatorship was brief and imperfect. Many of Robespierre's enemies were guillotined. But the group that opposed him was in fear and they understood that the terror must be stopped and the only way to do that was to undermine Robespierre's power and overthrow him at last. St. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Russia, USSR 1905-1941 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Russia, USSR 1905-1941 essays

  1. Find out the real cause of the French Revolution

    Being the reason of the storming of the Versailles by the Paris women, Marie Antoinette was also one of the biggest influences on her husband, Louis XVI, in matters such as handling the country. From all these evidences, some possible conclusions could be made.

  2. History - USSR - The main reason for the February/March Revolution was The World ...

    he wanted, only he could appoint ministers and in an emergency he could govern without consulting the Duma. The Duma was a huge disappointment. It had not managed to change the conditions of the people of Russia in any meaningful way.

  1. Stalin man or monster

    Source B shows this view portraying army workers with Stalin, however this is highly unlikely of taken place as it is painting envisaged by a painters mind thus biased however the source still portray that there where some who did support Stalin such as the painter who painted the portrait.

  2. To what extent was the storming of the Bastille the most significant event of ...

    By locking the doors of the Assembly meeting room, he sent across the message, whether intentionally or not, that created a fear among them of being arrested and it seemed to them that the Louis was trying to impress upon them his power.

  1. The Radical Phase: 1793-94

    The Great Terror- Last phase of the terror, Spring 1794) (SLIDE 4) As the threat from civil war and regional revolts had been crushed, underlying differences within the Jacobins and the revolutionary sans-culottes intensified. The Left, led by Hebert and the Exaggeres, demanded further controls over the economy to create

  2. Purges and Hysteria in the Soviet Union

    To crackdown against rivals, Stalin needed more than Nikolayev as the murderer of Kirov. The NKVD declared that Nikolayev and the Zinovievite group in Leningrad had conspired together to murder Kirov and to murder also Stalin, Molotov and Kaganovich. The arrested Zinovievites confessed to belonging to a group but not

  1. Tsar's Russia & revolution, Hitler's rise to power revison notes.

    Lenin was their leader. He was exiled by the Tsar but the Germans helped him get back in thinking he could cause another revolution. He didn't want to work with the provisional government and wanted another revolution. He made an April thesis which said: * Peace - an end the


    looked for but the different groups would never be able to agree on what the change should be Tsar Alexander II had recognised that the land needed reform and that serfdom had to go. The Emancipation of the Serfs 1861 and his other reforms were an attempt to reform Russia

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work