Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Storming of the Bastille

  • Each night in late June thousands of people gathered to listen to revolutionary journalists and politicians.
  • By 11th July Louis XVI had about 25,000 troops around Paris and Versailles.
  • The deputies of the Estates-General expected Louis to use force to dissolve the assembly and arrest its leaders.
  • Speakers called upon Parisians to take up arms against the Ancien Régime.
  • A frantic search for muskets and ammunition began…

14th July 1789 - Storming the Bastille
  • The search for weapons took them to Les Invalides where they took 28,000 muskets and 20 cannon.
  • A subsequent search for gunpowder took them to the Bastille.
  • The Bastille was a large prison fortress and a symbol of the king’s tyranny.
  • The governor de Launay ordered his troops to fire on the crowd as they tried to enter, killing 98.
  • Parisians joined by a defecting army fought back angrily.
  • De Launay was forced to surrender. He was murdered and then decapitated with his severed head paraded throughout Paris.

Video Links
Storming of the Bastille 1
Storming of the Bastille 2
Storming of the Bastille 3

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