The Making of the Parisian Political Demonstration: A Case Study of 20 June 1792[*]
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20 June 1792, the famed march of the sans-culottes across Paris and through the Legislative Assembly and Tuileries Palace, occupies a prominent place in almost every account of the French Revolution. It is usually portrayed as a key step towards the fall of the monarchy, a dress rehearsal of sorts for the insurrection which would overthrow Louis XVI less than seven weeks later. The focus upon 20 June as a precursor to violence has, however, led scholars to overlook its role in a different and perhaps even more interesting progression: the development of new forms of peaceful protest. Coalescing at the Place de la Bastille, making an orderly march through the narrow streets of central Paris, and incorporating 20-30,000 participants by the time they reached the doors of the Assembly, the protesters projected a mode of expression remarkably similar to the political demonstrations that would so influence political life over the course of France's later republics. Carrying banners and singing anthems of solidarity, the men, women, and children who marched presented a powerful, essentially unified, and scrupulously nonviolent front against conservative opposition.
Historiographically, the early development of the French political demonstration has been almost entirely neglected. Traditional Marxist historiography of the French Revolutionary "crowd" ignored much of the creativity and innovation of the protesting popular classes between 1789 and 1795. In his still-authoritative work, George Rudé saw protesters' motivations as reactions to economic and subsistence concerns and wrote little on the forms the protests took. Revisionist work has exhibited an even narrower focus, with only one minor article devoted to journées in François Furet and Mona Ozouf's Critical Dictionary of the French Revolution. Otherwise, attention has focused largely on the mass action that occurred under elite direction, as in Ozouf's study of festivals during the Revolution.
The most innovative work on political demonstrations in general has been that of Charles Tilly, who has developed the concept of a "repertoire" of popular protest to describe the corpus of methods that protesters employ in a given society at a given time. For the most part, in his view, such repertoires change slowly. The great exception to this gradual evolution, however, was the revolution in repertoire that Tilly believes to have begun in earnest in Great Britain during the eighteenth century but not in France until the middle of the nineteenth. The political demonstration, or manifestation politique, was for the subsequent history of French popular protest perhaps the most substantial of the new forms. I essentially follow Tilly in defining the political demonstration as a series of acts through which politicized interests organize large numbers of participants and effect a disciplined march between symbolically important locales. Such a demonstration seeks to draw both wide attention to its cause and to present political demands before those in positions to make the desired changes. While the political demonstration, according to Tilly, would not achieve a dominant place in Parisian protest until the 1880s, my analysis of the journée of 20 June suggests that the emergence of this new form of repertoire can be traced back nearly a century earlier.
The question of sources has led me to devote particular attention to 20 June. Unique among early examples, it was a major demonstration that largely occupied the politicians and political writers of the capital for the weeks preceding and following the event, thus leaving abundant materials for a detailed examination. I have attempted to view all surviving printed contemporary materials relating to the journée, most notably newspapers, pamphlets, personal journals and letters, surviving depositions, and parliamentary archives. It is rare to find these sources contradictory in their descriptions of the details of events even when they differ markedly in interpretation. Nevertheless, every attempt has been made to establish multiple sources for each incident described.
My discussion primarily focuses on the origins of the journée, its mobilization, and the protesters' degree of unity and coordination. I analyze what types of messages the demonstrators attempted to convey and how they interacted with those whom they were attempting to influence. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, I explore the extent to which this movement can be linked to the political demonstrations that would subsequently come into such prominence in the nineteenth century and beyond.
Parisian protest movements, January - June 1792
The six months before 20 June saw city-wide awareness of and participation in a growing atmosphere of protest. Many of the movements transcended neighborhood boundaries, either inspiring activities in other quarters or traversing much of the city. January 1792 saw the breakout of near-simultaneous sugar and sustenance riots in the Faubourg Saint-Antoine, Faubourg Saint-Marcel, and Beaubourg quarter and along the central quays of the city. Another major sugar disturbance rocked the Faubourg Saint-Marcel a month later.The spring saw several high-visibility marches, the first occurring in late March and involving a banquet given by the Vainqueurs de la Bastille in honor of another influential radical contingent, the Forts de la Halle. From a meeting point in Les Halles, a large group traversed the approximately two kilometers to their planned meal on the Champs-Elysées, marching behind a liberty bonnet held atop a tri-colored pike and singing revolutionary anthems. The banquet featured guests including Jérome Pétion, the leftist mayor of Paris, and many ceremonial, politicized toasts, including one to the recently-acquired freedom of the former slaves of Saint-Domingue. After the banquet, the demonstrators re-crossed the city, fraternally marching through the Jacobin Club on the rue Saint-Honoré and then continuing in an orderly fashion across town to a meeting hall on the Place Royale (today the Place des Vosges).
The trend towards highly organized marches became particularly pronounced with the liberal Châteauvieux demonstration on 15 April and the conservative and liberal countermarches of early June. The Châteauvieux demonstration was held in honor of a Swiss infantry unit of that name whose members had been imprisoned since 1790 in Nancy for mutiny against their aristocratic officers. Their liberation had become a major cause-célèbre among liberals, and the unit's arrival in Paris led to a march in their honor, financed by several sections (political districts) of the city. The demonstration traversed much of the city, leaving from the Place de la Bastille, continuing northwest along the boulevards, cutting south through the Place Vendôme and the Assembly, and ending at the Place Louis XV (now Place de la Concorde). The themes of liberty and throwing off tyranny ruled the day. The reactionary Fête de la loi followed a similar route on 3 June in honor of the mayor of Étampes, Jacques-Guillame Simoneau, who had been lynched in February for refusing to lower grain prices. The Fête de la loi essentially fits the description of what would become known as a counter-demonstration, answering Châteauvieux with a strict law-and-order ideology that would have been anathema to radical elements of the population. A countermarch to the Fête de la loi followed the next day with approximately fifteen hundred inhabitants of the Faubourg Saint-Jacques, "men, women and children," marching from the Left Bank and parading through the National Assembly.
20 June and the preceding leftist demonstrations of spring 1792 occurred in response to a number of unpopular decisions that the king made and that his conservative political allies supported. The king had recently issued vetoes against legislation that would have strengthened the revolutionary cause by increasing penalties against émigrés and refractory clergymen, and Louis had shown his intention of vetoing a measure that would have formed a camp of twenty thousand soldiers to protect the capital from foreign invasion. The war greatly exacerbated political divisions; early battles had gone badly for the French, and there was a very real threat of the capital falling to counter-revolutionary forces. The common belief, later proved accurate, that the royal family was colluding with the enemy may have been even more damaging. Timothy Tackett has recently shown this period to be integral in the development of a "conspiracy obsession" among many members of the National Assembly, with a widespread fear developing of a nefarious "Austrian Committee" which would deliver the country into the hands of the Hapsburgs. A similar distrust of Louis and his shadowy advisors grew among the popular classes of Paris; 20 June can be viewed as the last chance the left gave an increasingly unpopular monarch to reform himself and his regime.
The Mobilization and making of the demonstration
The two most radical neighborhoods of the capital, the Faubourg Saint-Antoine and the Faubourg Saint-Marcel, appear to have planned the journée of 20 June in sectional sessions during the ten days preceding the demonstration. The stormy session of the Assembly on 10 June witnessed five different petitioning groups from the capital generally agitating in favor of the fédéré camp. After exiting the hall, the deputation from Saint-Antoine appears to have returned with the petitioners of Saint-Marcel to the latters' meeting house at the Section des Gobelins. In the following days, meetings appear to have shifted between the hall of Saint-Antoine's Section of Quinze-Vingts and the house of its most famous revolutionary, Antoine-Joseph Santerre. There appears to have been significant correspondence with other sections and popular societies across the capital and a widespread distribution of posters to publicize the coming event.
Plans for a demonstration were well known citywide from about 16 June onward, and its organizers widely publicized the coming event. On 18 June, Santerre held a banquet for five hundred people on the Champs-Elysées, including several notable radicals and deputies of the Assembly. On the 19ththe Assembly received a deputation asking permission to plant a liberty tree outside their hall the next day and then to march through the hall. The Assembly agreed to the request and named four members to assist in the ceremony. Emboldened, that night Santerre and other organizers attended a five-hour mass meeting of the Section des Enfants-Trouvés in the Faubourg Saint-Antoine, which drew over a thousand people. Those in attendance discussed and adopted the petition to be read to the Assembly the next day. The section received deputations from other areas of Paris, likely coordinating the next day's movements. Evidence suggests that the Section de Popincourt (also in Saint-Antoine) and the Section des Gobelins remained in session all night long. The sectional authorities emphasized unanimity, order, and non-violence in the demonstration, asking "all the inhabitants of the Faubourg Saint-Antoine to conduct themselves with moderation, equality, and peace during tomorrow's journée, in order to make a liar of [the Marquis de] Lafayette," one of many who had predicted an insurrection.
The organizers' calls for peace contrasted with their insistence upon marching with arms, which they were able to effect in spite of the emphatic opposition of the two governing bodies of Paris, the department and the municipality. None of those present could forget that less than a year earlier an unarmed and peaceful demonstration to sign a republican petition at the Champ de Mars had ended in the National Guard opening fire and killing dozens of men, women, and children. While preparing to march peacefully, the organizers realized the need for defense due to the tense atmosphere. The administrative bodies of Paris remained firm in declaring the illegality of a popular armed march. One popular leader offered Pétion (the key administrative figure with clear sympathies for the demonstrators) a compromise proposal: the demonstrators could carry their weapons across town but would leave them outside the National Assembly before parading through its hall. This compromise was never adopted, however.
As the demonstration mobilized, officials looked on but did little to affect its course. At mid-morning on the 20th, Pétion wrote to the municipality that he had even accompanied one of the leaders of the Faubourg Saint-Marcel, Charles-Alexis Alexandre, during Alexandre's pre-demonstration rounds to the section house and the Boulevard Salpetrière. At the latter they "found a part of the battalion of Saint-Marcel in arms, with their cannons at their head. . . . their number enhanced by a great number of citizens and women." The capital's forces of order stepped aside, giving the protesters the opportunity to demonstrate unimpeded but also placing the impetus upon local leadership to keep the movement peaceful. Had the march gone badly, authorities could have enacted a series of repressive measures similar to those of late July 1791, which had effectively ended protest movements in the capital for the rest of that year. Shortly before the Saint-Marcel deputation departed on their march, the municipality gave in, ratifying the march and placing it under the auspices of the Battalion Commanders of the Parisian National Guard. The protesters had outmaneuvered local authority and began their demonstration unencumbered by repressive forces.
The demonstrators began to congregate locally in the early morning hours, with the largest gatherings taking place at the Place de la Bastille for the Faubourg Saint-Antoine and along the Boulevard Salpetrière for the Faubourg Saint-Marcel. The Saint-Marcel demonstrators departed first, marching westward to cross the Seine on the bridges of the Île Saint-Louis and then heading east to join forces with Saint-Antoine at the Place de la Bastille. With Saint-Antoine now taking the lead position and Santerre as the nominal commander, the demonstrators departed in an orderly fashion due west, marching down the rue Saint-Antoine and through numerous smaller streets of central Paris before halting in the Place Vendôme to parley with the Assembly. One description observes that the demonstration, which may have included upwards of thirty thousand participants, extended in an unbroken line from the Assembly, which adjoined the Tuileries Garden, to the Pont Marie opposite the Île Saint-Louis. By achieving such a coordinated series of actions, the demonstrators made a significant claim for their collective power.
The demonstration appears to have been organized by trade and neighborhood sub-groupings, a feature likely carried over from the traditional religious processions in which Parisians still regularly took part. One observer saw discernable contingents from ten different trades among the Faubourg Saint-Antoine protestors; carpenters, gilt furniture and luxury table makers, fabric cutters, wood cutters, sawyers, wood carriers, rope makers, carriage-makers, and brewers each marched in corporate units, mobilizing for protest the formations they normally used to uphold the status quo. Such a mass demonstration did not represent a radical break from the culture and loyalties of the popular classes of the time but was rather an expanded expression of discontent in a community in which many older loyalties still held pride of place.
In carrying out the first major step of the journée, the protesters used their march to drive home the principal messages they aimed to convey: the unity of the people and their dissatisfaction with Louis XVI and his counterrevolutionary vetoes. Banners carried by participating groups explicitly expressed themes that varied from support for the institutions favorable to popular interests ("Long Live the National Assembly!") to self-identification ("When the patrie is in Danger, All the sans-culottes Arise"), abstract political claims ("We Only Want Unity, Liberty, & Equality"), and, perhaps most dramatically, confrontations with their opposition ("Tyrants, Tremble or be Just, and Respect the Liberty of Peoples"). Some in the crowd turned to more theatrical metaphors: in one instance, protestors attached a collection of animal intestines without a heart or liver (foie) to a pole with a sign that read, "They Don't Have Faith (foi) or Heart, but Only the Spoiled Remains." The interlocking nature of each of these declarations is easily visible; the protesters presented themselves as essentially united, willing to work with institutions that were ready to parley with them but denouncing elements of an increasingly obstinate counterrevolution. Closely associating themselves with notions of liberty and equality, the protesters also announced their readiness to move against those who blocked these goals.
Effective political performance became especially important as the demonstration reached the space requiring the most active negotiation to enter, the National Assembly. While the protesters had received permission to march through the previous day, they had not mentioned that they planned to be armed. Given that the success of their political objectives hinged on Assembly support, the demonstrators could ill afford to alienate its deputies. Conservative parliamentarians were already adamantly opposed to allowing entrance, and the tumultuous debate that occurred as the demonstration arrived split along a strict liberal/conservative divide. The extent of conservative influence was uncertain but possibly decisive. Especially with centrist Français de Nantes leading the parliamentary session, the protesters needed to be able to appeal to moderate opinion for their demonstration to succeed.
Attempting to lessen parliamentarian concern, Santerre sent a note that appears to have been purposefully vague about the demonstrators' intentions in order to ensure that they would be allowed into the hall. The note did not mention the demonstrators' opposition to the king and his vetoes, and Santerre instead called attention to the protester's desire to celebrate the anniversary of the Tennis-Court Oath and to "present their homage to the National Assembly." He claimed that the demonstration's "intentions had been misunderstood" and asked that the protesters have the chance "to prove that they are the friends of liberty and the Men of 14 July." The Left applauded when the note was read, although the Right continued to argue against the protesters' admittance. The Right particularly emphasized that entry with arms into the Assembly was illegal, although it had been allowed in multiple marches through the hall already that year. Many likely wished to avoid the confrontation altogether: one right-wing deputy declared that "Since they're 8,000 and we're only 745, I propose that we end the session and get ourselves out of here!" The demonstrators were entering, at best, a tepid climate; many of the deputies were clearly anything but enthusiastic.
The protesters succeeded in gaining full entry to the Assembly only after a detailed series of negotiations and justifications. They were first aided by parliamentary help, led by Français de Nantes, who directed the Assembly to a voice vote in favor of hearing the demonstrators' petition. The permitted deputation first set about attempting to legitimate the march, declaring themselves justified by Article Two of the Declaration of the Rights of Man, which called for "resistance to oppression." The extreme tact of Santerre's note was now absent, replaced by stronger power claims. "The people have arrived," the deputation proclaimed, "they silently wait for a dignified recognition, finally, of their own sovereignty." The protesters asked to march through the hall. Still controlling the floor, Français ignored strong conservative opposition and declared that the Assembly was "assured of [the protesters'] patriotic sentiments." Another voice vote was rushed through to allow the demonstrators' entry. As in their interactions with the municipal authorities, the protesters had successfully negotiated permission to continue their demonstration.
The march through the Assembly appears to have been an impressive affair, with demonstrators crossing the hall in an unbroken line from 1:30 to 3:15 p.m. While displaying a high degree of hostility to counterrevolutionary factions, the protesters remained highly focused on the demonstration's central messages. They sang revolutionary anthems such as Ça ira and cried out slogans such as "long live our representatives! . . . long live the law! Down with the veto!" which were applauded by like-minded deputies. Certain elements of the demonstration, however, appeared to make many parliamentarians uncomfortable, such as a prop carried by one man that fixed a bloody calf's heart atop a pike with a sign that read, "Heart of an Aristocrat." Another demonstrator theatrically tore up the posted decree of the Department of Paris forbidding an armed gathering on 20 June. In spite of these confrontational moments, however, much of the Assembly seemed sympathetic to the demonstrators. When one stopped to orate, "Legislators, this isn't two thousand men, but twenty million who present themselves before you, an entire nation that must arm itself to fight tyrants, their enemies and yours," he met with applause from the parliamentary benches.
There remains doubt as to whether this demonstration was an armed attempt to intimidate the Assembly or a more peaceful attempt to engage in dialogue. Certainly, protesters paraded a great variety of weapons through the hall, including halberds, pikes, scythes, swords, spits, hatchets, rifles, knives, and pitchforks. Yet while one observer highlighted that some "[w]omen brandished their sabers, and children shook their knives" before the legislators, the parliamentary record reports that most demonstrators marched without weapons, while the armed detachments of marching National Guardsmen appeared almost "lost in the crowd." The widespread presence of children, in particular, suggests the pacific intention of the demonstration, and it seems unlikely that a large number of demonstrators would have participated in the march unarmed if they had anticipated violence.
The next stage of the demonstration, between the Assembly and the Tuileries, appears to have been the most unplanned and disorganized. To what degree the protesters had premeditated entering the Tuileries is difficult to know, though Pétion claimed afterwards that the demonstration in the Place du Carrousel, in front of the palace's entrance, was initially meant as an end in itself. That the protesters could have willingly disbanded there seems unlikely, especially given their just-concluded rousing march through the Assembly. As they crowded into the square, the demonstrators were legitimately fearful of armed force being used against them. The protesters found the doors to the palace blocked by a significant number of troops, cavalry, and cannon and reinforced by further battalions stationed in the Place Louis XV. Yet the National Guardsmen in command, widely sympathetic to the demonstration and fearful perhaps of being the perpetrators of another massacre of the Champ de Mars, stood down from their posts. Accounts of how the protesters finally achieved entrance into the palace vary widely, but once the guard had stepped aside, the outcome was a foregone conclusion. As the municipality and the Assembly had done, guardsmen dissatisfied with the current political situation gave the demonstrators the opportunity to agitate for change.
By entering the Tuileries, the protesters were directly confronting the king and sending a powerful message to his supporters, attempting to make conservatives acknowledge the degree of popular opposition to their policies. While this stage of the demonstration's ethos owes some of its spirit both to traditional corporate and religious parades and to the traditional charivari, its confrontation of a monarch was unprecedented. Protestors ignored traditional forms of deference as they expected to win over the monarch by the strength of their opinion and the intimidating force of their numbers. While most surveys of the Revolution tend to privilege Louis XVI's courage in the face of the demonstrators, the restraint those confronting him displayed also deserves credit. A deputation of the protesters presented their demands amidst the march, specifically asking for the recall of the Patriot ministers and the revocation of the king's two vetoes. Louis abruptly refused yet remained unharmed. That he was left untouched by an enormous body of protesters who had spent most of the day aggressively denouncing tyrants shows an incredible restraint and strategic commitment to peaceful demonstration. Pétion arrived roughly two hours into the demonstration, and following his request, the demonstrators slowly dispersed. All across Paris, as one newspaper commented, "[b]y 10 p.m., nothing distinguished the atmosphere from that of a normal day."
The Aftermath of 20 June
The 20 June demonstration, particularly the final march through the Tuileries, forced liberals to endure an exceedingly hostile reaction from conservatives in the days after the journée. A sizeable contingent from the Faubourg Saint-Antoine was denied entry into the Assembly the next day. Subsequent attempts to regain favor with the Assembly focused on the claim of legality that the demonstrators had cultivated. The president of the Section des Gobelins, in a 22 June letter, argued that "[a]s non-equivocal proofs of [the protesters'] submission to the law, look at how they submitted their program to you, which you did not oppose: you let them march before you." The president stressed that the protesters had been similarly law-abiding before the court. He emphasized the order of the demonstration and explained the political ends of the protesters' methods. One petition on the 30th argued that the basic problem was that "gatherings of the people, the only means by which they know how to resist oppression, are against the law." Asking for "a legal manner" of resistance, the petitioners received some polite applause before having their petition sent to committee.
Given the king and parliamentary conservatives' continued unwillingness to reform, the road to the insurrection of 10 August 1792, which overthrew the monarchy, was becoming increasingly clear to Parisian radicals. On 22 June, the Faubourg Saint-Antoine held a mass meeting that adopted a petition calling for Louis XVI to be deposed then circulated it among the other sections of the capital. On 25 June the Faubourg Montmartre petitioned the Assembly for the permanent meeting of the sections of the capital, a move previously tolerated only in times of extreme crisis, but did not gain the body's favor. The rhetoric of Parisian petitions against perceived traitors continued to grow stronger: multiple petitions on 1 July denounced Lafayette as a "factious . . . new Cromwell," while their authors proclaimed that they were "only waiting for the signal of our representatives" to rise against their enemies. Popular conspiracy obsession and the professed willingness of many groups to take extreme measures to defuse plots grew stronger. A deputation of fédéré soldiers was the first to ask for the king's suspension on 17 July and the Section du Croix-Rouge followed, calling for the Assembly to declare the king's forfeiture of his crown on the 25th.
In spite of this rapidly expanding atmosphere of contestation, we have little indication of large-scale protest in Paris between 20 June and 10 August. Much of the populace appears to have looked increasingly to the sections for leadership, and when the final insurrection did occur, it was widely announced in advance, including to the Assembly the night beforehand. The principal event of the period occurred with the arrival of the Marseillais fédérés on 29 July. Hosted by Santerre and the radicals of the Faubourg Saint-Antoine, the group traversed Paris towards another planned banquet on the Champs-Élysées. There was little pretense of nonviolence on this occasion, however; members of the groups engaged in scuffles with opponents at the Palais Royal and, upon arriving at the Champs, quickly fell into a major brawl with conservative soldiers. This rediscovered penchant for violence should not surprise us; the demonstrations of the spring had produced few, if any, tangible benefits. Such a conciliatory form of protest fell into disuse as radicals actively planned the overthrow of the monarchical government. The polarizing nature of French Revolutionary politics did not allow sufficient dialogue between opposing groups for such a nonviolent form as the political demonstration to be effective.
Conclusion: 20 June and the emergence of the political demonstration
The journée of 20 June marked a major step in the emergence of the modern political demonstration and its entry into the "repertoire" of mass movements. While it drew inspiration from such older practices as the religious procession, the corporate march, and the charivari, and while it mobilized within the networks of neighborhood and guild, 20 June appears to represent a new form of political action. Already by the beginning of 1792 popular groups were deploying collective marches and petitions to present their demands with a regularity and forthrightness never before seen. In this way elements of the Parisian masses projected a sense of common identity, strongly reinforced by the networks of leftist associations rapidly developing in the capital. In the uncertain tumult of mid-1792, the crowds drew on the creative and organizational strength of diverse groups, organizations, and individuals to project a new sense of self confidence and agency.
On 20 June, as during the 24 June 1791 protest during the flight to Varennes or the 4-5 September 1793 action against bread prices, the mass political demonstration marked a moment of high contention during which protesters still held out hope for a compromise solution. Demonstrators still believed that they could attain their goals through negotiation with those in power rather than through the use of violence. After 1793, political demonstrations of this sort would largely disappear from the repertoire of French Revolutionary collective action, but they would reemerge in the nineteenth century, at first following a strategy remarkably similar to that of 20 June 1792. On 14 May 1815, during Napoleon's Hundred Days, thousands of workers from the Faubourg Saint-Antoine and the Faubourg Saint-Marceau would march across town to the Place du Carrousel, asking Napoleon to allow them to join the military units then being established to defend Paris and to prevent the reimposition of a Bourbon king. Throughout much of the nineteenth century and beyond, France would be wracked by battles over how much political voice its citizens might be granted and in what forms. During these struggles, the political demonstration regularly reappeared as a prime form of protest. Its emergence, however, appears to be a key legacy of the French Revolution.
I would like to thank Sharon Block, Lindsay Holowach, Gary Kates, Jason Sellers, Glen Watt, and especially Timothy Tackett for their careful reading and comments on different drafts of this project and David Garrioch and Charles Tilly for discussing my project with me.
Mona Ozouf, Festivals and the French Revolution, trans. Alan Sherdian (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1988). One exception is William Sewell, "Collective Violence and Collective Loyalties in France: Why the French Revolution Made a Difference," Politics and Society 18:4 (1990): 481-562, which, using in many ways a revisionist framework, posits a major shift from 1789 in patterns of collective violence.
Charles Tilly, The Contentious French: Four Centuries of Popular Struggle (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press, 1986), 6. See also idem, Popular Contention in Great Britain, 1758-1834 (Boulder, CO: Paradigm, 2005).
The Vainqueurs (Conquerors) of the Bastille were a key pressure group formed of men recognized as having captured the fortress in 1789. Operating largely out of the Faubourg Saint-Antoine where most of them resided, they remained a powerful interest group throughout the popular phase of the Revolution.
Le Thermomètre du Jour, 5 June 1792; and Les Archives parlementaires de 1787 à 1860: recueil complet des débats législatifs et politiques des Chambres françaises (Paris: Librairie administrative de Paul Dupont, 1879-), 44:551. The parliamentary record estimates that 1,200-1,500 demonstrators marched through the hall.
Rapport du Ministre de l'Intérieur à L'Assemblée Nationale, sur les précautions prises relativement aux événemens du 20 juin (Paris, 1792); and untitled proclamation of the Municipality of Paris, 16 June 1792 in Louis Mortimer-Ternaux, Histoire de la terreur, 1792-1794: d'après des documents authentiques et inédits, 8 vols. (Paris: Lévy, 1862-69), 1:133-4.
A wide reading of the Parisian press during 1791 has unearthed eighty-two events of collective protest (both violent and nonviolent) in the city from 1 Jan. to 20 July 1792 but only fourteen events over the rest of the year.
David Garrioch has made a similar point about the October Days in "The Everyday Lives of Parisian Women and the October Days of 1789," Social History 24:3 (1999): 231-49. Such evidence disagrees with Sewell's contention that the forms of mobilization that emerged with the Revolution "differed sharply from corporate bodies" and that "their members were bound to one another only by their voluntary adherence to the association and their common vision of the public good." Sewell, 539.
Of the twenty-one assemblymen who spoke either in favor of or against allowing the admission of the protesters, each without exception spoke on the side of his (typically polarized) voting record. I am using C. J. Mitchell's voter breakdown in his The French Legislative Assembly of 1791 (New York: E. J. Brill, 1988), which evenly divides much of the Assembly into liberal "oui" and conservative "non" voting blocks.
Mathieu Blanc-Gilli, Lettre d'un député de l'Assemblée nationale, au département des Bouches du Rhone, au sujet de l'attentat et des désordres commis au château des Thuileries, le 20 juin (Paris: Crapart, 1792), 10.
"Rapport que fait M. de Romainvilliers, commandant général, des faits qui se sont passés dans la malheureuse journée du 20 juin 1792, et journées antécédentes," in Archives parlementaires, 46:409; and Correspondance Politique des Véritables Amis du Roi, 22 June 1792.
See, for example, William Doyle, The Oxford History of the French Revolution (New York: Oxford University Press, 1989), 186; François Furet and Denis Richet La Révolution française (Paris: Fayard, 1973), 153-4; and Albert Soboul, La Révolution française (Paris: Éditions sociales, 1981), 240.
Archives parlementaires, 45:454. Ferdinand Braesch, in his La commune du dix août 1792: étude sur l'histoire de Paris du 20 juin au 2 décembre 1792 (1911; repr., Geneva: Mégatriotis Reprints, 1978), 51, states that the deputation was armed and was subsequently spotted close to the Louvre before dispersing.
Jean Tulard, Nouvelle Histoire de Paris: le Consulat et l'Empire, 1800-1815 (Paris: Hachette, 1970), 394. For more information on the surrounding circumstances see R. S. Alexander, Bonapartism and the Revolutionary Tradition in France: the Fédérés of 1815 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1991), esp. 44.