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The Fall of Robespierre By Colin Jones (Professor of History, Queen Mary University of London)

The Fall of Robespierre by Colin Jones (Professor of History, Queen Mary University of London)

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Summary

The day of 9 Thermidor (27 July 1794) is universally acknowledged as a major turning-point in the history of the French Revolution. Maximilien Robespierre, the most prominent member of the Committee of Public Safety, was planning to destroy one of the most dangerous plots that the Revolution had faced.

The Fall of Robespierre Summary

The Fall of Robespierre: 24 Hours in Revolutionary Paris by Colin Jones (Professor of History, Queen Mary University of London)

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.

The Fall of Robespierre Reviews

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 *
... minutely detailed and unfailingly gripping... Jones's superbly researched and strikingly original book produces an optic of a radically different kind. '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, author A Place of Greater Safety and the Wolf Hall trilogy *
This is an astoundingly scholarly book, written with a beautifully assured hand... a book for the historian of the French Revolution itself... The minutiae of detail, and the ability to convey it, along with the mounting tension, is a specific talent, and which has been so obviously achieved by the author of this fascinating and superb volume. * Sandra Callard, On: Yorkshire Magazine *

About Colin Jones (Professor of History, Queen Mary University of London)

Colin Jones CBE is Professor of History at Queen Mary University of London. He has published widely on French history, particularly on the eighteenth century, the French Revolution, and the history of medicine. His many books include The Medical World of Early Modern France (with Lawrence Brockliss, 1997), The Great Nation: France from Louis XV to Napoleon (2002), Paris: Biography of a City (2004: winner of the Enid MacLeod Prize) and The Smile Revolution: In Eighteenth-Century Paris (2014). He is a Fellow of the British Academy and Past President, Royal Historical Society.

Table of Contents

INTRODUCTION: THE FALL OF ROBESPIERRE UP CLOSE PRELUDE: AROUND MIDNIGHT PART 1: ELEMENTS OF CONSPIRACY (Midnight to 05.00 a.m.) PART 2: SETTINGS FOR A DRAMA (05.00 a.m. - 12 noon) PART 3: A PARLIAMENTARY COUP (Midday to 5.00 p.m.) PART 4: A PARISIAN JOURNEE (5.00 p.m. to midnight) PART FIVE: AT MIDNIGHT, AROUND MIDNIGHT AFTERWORD: 9 THERMIDOR FROM AFAR NOTES LIST OF CHARACTERS NOTE ON SOURCES BIBLIOGRAPHY AND PRINTED SOURCES ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS INDEX

Additional information

NGR9780198715955
9780198715955
0198715951
The Fall of Robespierre: 24 Hours in Revolutionary Paris by Colin Jones (Professor of History, Queen Mary University of London)
New
Hardback
Oxford University Press
2021-08-12
592
N/A
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