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DEMAND OF THE PEOPLE FOR ARMS. Swiss, who modelled busts in wax; this Curtius being the ing arms and ringing the tocsin. The few electors who tincle of madame Tussaud, of London fame, in the same were there endeavoured to calm them; but fresh crowds Ine. They seized on the busts of Necker and of the duke of came pouring in, and crying “Arms! arms!” The electors Orleans, who, it was said, was to be banished; and, covering shrank from the responsibility of giving out the arms there, them with black crape, carried them through the streets, but the people forced their way in, and began to seize them crying, "Hats off! hats off !” The cry was, "No theatres ! for themselves. The electors were compelled to give way, no dancing! It is a day of woo !” The mob, armed with and soon was seen a man clad only in his shirt, without shoes pistola, clubs, swords, and axes, continued their procession or stockings, placing himself, with a musket on his shoulder, along the rue Richelieu ; then turning on the Boulevard, as sentinel at the door of the hall. along the rues St. Martin, St. Denis, St. Honoré, to the On the Monday morning, by six o'clock, the alarm bells Place Vendôme, where they paraded the busts round the were ringing from all the churches in the city; the tocsin statue of Louis XIV., which stood where the Bonaparte was sounding from the Hôtel de Ville, and the crowds again column now stands. There a German squadron was drawn ran thither, demanding arms and ammunition. The electons, up before the hotel of the farmers-general, and attacked the in despair, declared that they could not issue arms without crowd, destroyed the busts, and killed a soldier of the the order of the provost of trades. “Then send for him!” French guard who stood his ground. The commandant, cried the mob; and Flesselles, the provost, was sent for. He Bezenyal, remained inactive in the Ecole Militaire; he was had just been sent for by the king to Versailles, but he felt without orders from Broglie ; and, besides, dared not trust the necessity of obeying the people first, for the crowd was the French guards, but kept them close in their barracks. thickly interspersed with the thieves which figured so promiBut he had three foreign regiments at his disposal, one of nently at the destruction of Reveillon's house, and which Swiss and two of German cavalry. Towards afternoon, always seem to start out of the ground on these occasions. seeing the disorder increase, he sent the Swiss into the He was received with loud applause in the Place de Grève, Champs Elysées with four pieces of cannon, and the German and he was patronisingly polite. “You shall be satisfied, cavalry into the Place Louis Quinze, adjoining. Towards my children; I am your father.” He declared that he evening, the crowd, returning from the Champs Elysées, would not wish to hold office except by the election of the entered the gardens of the Tuileries, where they saw the people. (Fresh applause.) Flesselles assured the crowd that German cavalry drawn up, but continued to pass on. It is he had made a contract with a gunsmith for a large quantity said that some of the mob insulted the Germans, and some of muskets; a thing, considering the shortness of the time boys threw stones; whereupon Bezenval, who had been since the disturbances began, wholly incredible. Yet he accused at Versailles of doing nothing, ordered the prince promised them twelve thousand that day, and more the Lambesc to charge them with the cavalry, and drive them next. He demanded who should be their general. Some of back. Lambesc at first attempted to repel the throng by the electors proposed Lafayette, some one, some another. advancing only at a foot-pace, but he was opposed by a The people grew rabid with impatience; they wanted arms, burricade of the chairs, which are let out in thousands in not arguments. The famishing multitude, hearing that these resorts, and was assailed by showers of stones. there was a great hoard of corn at the monastery of St. He then fired over the beads of the people. The women Lazare, rushed away, broke in, found corn enough to load raised piercing shrieks, the men pressed on to close the fifty carts, which were sent to the market, and there disgates behind him. Lambesc rushed forward, overturning tributed. They seized sixty barrels of gunpowder on the an old schoolmaster who was not alert enough to get behind Seine ; attacked the Guarde Meuble, and seized the arms the railing, and so was severely injured. As Lambesc was there, which, however, were old and nearly useless. They marching along the Chaussée d'Antin, he was met by a grew impatient, and demanded that Flesselles should inform body of the French guards, who had escaped from their them where the thirty thousand stand of arms which the barracks to avenge their slain comrade. They fired on him intendant Berthier had had made were concealed. He and killed three of the German cavalry, and wounded promised to discover, and send them to the Hôtel de Ville. numbers more. They then advanced with fixed bayonets to About five o'clock in the evening, a number of carts were the Place Louis Quinze, where the Swiss guards were seen traversing the Grève, with large chests, marked posted. There they and the Swiss remained facing each “ Artillery.” Behold the expected muskets! they cried. The other ander arms all night, the people feasting and en- chests were broken open, and they were discovered to be only couraging the French guards ; who, however, did not come chests of old rags! There was a terrible cry of rage, and to blows with the Swies. Lambesc had continued his route exclamations of treachery. Flesselles stood confounded; but to St. Cloud, leaving the city all night in the hands of the some one near him, to extricate him from his perilous situation, mob, who burnt the barriers at the different entrances, so declared that there was a great and concealed depôt of arms u to allow free access to the people from the country; at the monastery of the Celestins, the Chartreux. The and broke open the gunsmiths' shops, and carried off the crowd hastened thither; the monks had none, and the fury
now rose to a tremendous pitch. To avert sanguinary The crowds who had dispersed themselves over Paris consequences, the electors gave orders for the manufacture arried everywhere the most horrible reports of the savage of fifty thousand pikes, of which thirty-six thousand were eruelty of the German cavalry; of their firing upon, and made in as many hours. During all this night, however, running over women and children. The indignation became Paris was in the hands of the mob, who tore up the pavefarious. Thousands rushed to the Hôtel de Ville, demand-'ments and carried the stones into the houses, to be dropped
aussée d'Autored. As Land behind Seine
on the heads of the military, should they enter the city; man found in arms, and wearing this cockade, without dug deep trenches, and threw up barricades. All round having been enrolled in this body by his district, was to be the Hôtel de Ville carriages were stopped, wagons inter apprehended, disarmed, and punished. And thus arose cepted, and travellers were waiting permission to proceed on the national guard of Paris. their way. The powder seized on the Seine was brought to During these proceedings, the national Assembly was the Hôtel de Ville; there it was distributed amid circum- sitting at Versailles in the utmost agitation. On the morning stances of the most imminent peril to the place and all in it. of the 13th, Mounier had risen and censured the dismissal of The abbé Lefebre d'Onnesson, a man of the highest courage, the ministers, and had been seconded by Lally. Tollendal, charged himself with the task of distributing the powder to who had pronounced a splendid panegyric on Necker, and the furious crowd. During eight-and-forty hours he re- recommended an address to the king for his recall. M. de mained on an actual mine. The insensate claimants fought Virieu, a deputy of the noblesse, proposed to confirm by an and struggled for the combustible material amid the light i oath the proceedings of the 17th of June ; but Clermont
of lanterns and candles, and one drunken fellow sate and Tonnerre declared that unnecessary, as the assembly hal smoked on the open casks of powder!
sworn to establish a constitution, and, he exclaimed, "The Whilst these scenes were going on all around, and the city constitution we will have, or we will perish!” In the mits was menaced every moment by troops, by the raving multi. of this discussion came the news of the rising of the people tude, and by whole squadrons of thieves and assassins, the of Paris, on the morning of the 13th, and an address sa electors were busily employed in organising a city-guard. immediately voted to the king, beseeching him to withdres But, previous to entering on this task, it was necessary to the foreign troops, and authorise the organisation of the establish some sort of municipal authority more definite and civic guards. The duke de la Rochefoucauld said, the foreira valid than that of the electors at large. A requisition was troops in the hands of despotism were most perilous to the then presented to the provost of trades (prévôt des mar- people, who were not in any one's hands. The address chands) to take the head. A number of electors were sent, and the king returned a curt answer, that Paris appointed his assistants. Thus was formed a municipality not in a condition to take care of itself. The assembly then of sufficient powers. It was then determined that this assumed a higher tone, asserted that the present counsellors militia, or guard, should consist of forty-cight thousand of the king would be responsible for all the calamities which men furnished by the districts. They were to wear not the might take place, and declared itself in permanent session green, but the Parisian cockade, of red and blue. Every that is, that it would sit day and night till the crisis :
over. It appointed M. de La Fayette vice-president, in the people, yet they had learnt to detest it as the gloomy place of the aged bishop of Vienne, who was not capable of instrument of royal despotism. The traditions of this so much exertion.
horrible fortress were such as made the flesh creep and the The court itself was not less agitated. It declared that blood run cold. It had been the living tomb of whomspeva the duke of Orleans had stirred up this émeute, and the bad excited the jealousy of the monarchs by their freedom fact of his bust having been carried in procession gave a of sentiment, or had offended by their aspiring too boldly in colour to the charge. But the duke himself had hastened to the paths of their passions or desires. The word of an envious Versailles, and pretended that he had no concern whatever courtier, or a revengeful priest, or a baughty mistress, in the business. He was requested to remain in the palace, been able to plunge into its dungeons in a moment the and having, as they thought, the author of the insurrection noblest hearts of France age after age. The mysterios under their hands, the court was more at ease. Alarming story of the man in the iron mask had made the Bastille tidings continued to reach Versailles through the night. a word of horror even in the furthest wilds of Siberia. The The assembly having adjourned for a short time, met again tale of Latude, plunged into its dungeons at the instance of at five in the morning on this the 15th of July. As if the king's mistress, madame de Pompadour, who had laia raised above all temporary perils, it at once appointed a there for five-and-thirty years, who was liberated only by committee to proceed with the constitution. The members the indefatigable and heroic exertions of another women of this committee were Talleyrand, the bishop of Autun; the and who was yet living, and had told the awful tale in bishop of Bordeaux, Messrs. Lally-Tollendal, Clermont-memoirs, had caused a universal curse to issue from the Tonnerre, Mounier, Sieyes, Chapelier, and Bergasse. Intelli-hearts of the French people. As the inhabitants of the gence more and more alarming continued to arrive. It was Faubourg St. Antoine and of the Marais saw its eight rumoured that the king would quit the place the following ponderous towers daily standing aloft in their view, they night, and the assembly would be left to the mercy of the cursed it. These towers, six feet thick at their summita, foreign regiments. It was even mentioned what members and from thirty to forty feet at their bases, tad resisted of it were to be secured. It was said that the princes, the the efforts of the great Condé to storm them. These tocats queen, and the duchesse de Polignac were walking in the rose above dungeons which had heard the groans and orangery flattering the officers and soldiers, and causing maledictions of thousands of sufferers, who never esesped refreshments to be distributed amongst them. There is to reveal their miseries. The fortress was surrounded by little doubt that a grand plan of a coup-d'etat had been three courts, with their deep moats crossed by drawbridges arranged. Paris was to be attacked on the ensuing night, that The giant walls of these courts presented solid masses with between the 15th and 16th of July, at seven points. The out windows, having only narrow loop-holes in the tonen troops had been advanced for the purpose. Paper money from which the garrison could fire on any assailant. At had been prepared. The barracks of the Swiss guards had the feet of these ponderous walls, deep, as it were, in pits, been stored with ammunition, and the governor of the in profound shadow, and with nothing exposed to view but Bastille had furnished them everything that could possibly the inexorable nakedness of the walls, were the promenade be spared.
of the prisoners, their very senses oppressed by the Titan But the court had hesitated too long. The people had solidity around them. The battlements of the towers en taken the start of them, and now came sounds which cut for the accommodation of cannon, which could see paralysed the court party with consternation.
the whole Faubourg St. Antoine and the Marais, and whenes, The prince de Lambesc was seen galloping up the avenue from behind the solid parapet, the gunners could set is at Versailles at fullest speed ; the roar of cannon came from perfect security. On the face of the prison wall was the side of Paris—the people had attacked the Bastille! A clock, supported by two figures of captives in chairs second deputation had been dispatched to the palace en- reminding the prisoners of their own condition, and relig treating the king to withdraw the troops from Paris; no to them the creeping slowness of time. Besides the came answer had been received, and a third was sent. As it was on the towers, it had an arsenal in one of the court, on its way the answer to the former one came, saying the cannon loaded with case-shot. On the towers also there king had ordered the troops to withdraw from the Champ kept six cart-loads of paving-stones, cannon-balls, de Mars; and having heard of the formation of the civic masses of iron, to cast down on the heads of assailants guard, had appointed officers to it. The third deputation Such was the place which the people now meditated held on its way, and the king appeared much agitated, and attacking. The idea was not new. The demand ieri declared that the orders to the trocps could not have pro- destruction appeared in the instructions of the depois duced the calamities the deputies reported. On receiving when first sent to the states-general, and it had been this answer the assembly adjourned for a short time, and in growing. Fortunately for the people, the greater part of the evening the news of the events of the 14th arrived. the ammunition and balls had been removed to the SE
On the night of the 13th, numbers of the populace barracks, and it contained only a garrison of thirty-two crowded about the Bastille. From that hour there were Swiss and eighty-two invalids. The governor, De Lamy heard in different parts of Paris cries of “To the Bastille ! has been painted by some historians as a mild and small down with the Bastille ! to the Bastille !” The Bastille, man; but such is not the testimony of the best Free the old state prison of Paris, standing near the Faubourg historians. He is described as hard, stern, and avaricios St. Antoine, had long had throughout Europe a hor- That, besides his pay of sixty thousand livres, he masa rible name. It had not been at all the prison of the to amass yearly as much by his rapine; that he supporto
his bousehold at the cost of the prisoners, had reduced their Twice we find him starting forth on its bloody career: food, and made a profit on their wine-which, in fact, once to condemn the Bastille, once to denounce Robespierre ; was but vinegar, and on their few miserable articles of and each time with mortal effect. Thuriot would admit of furniture; that the only spot where the prisoners could get no refusal. He entered, and told De Launay that he came a breath of free air and a gleam of sunshine, a small garden to summon the Bastille to surrender in the name of the on a bastion, he had let to a gardener, and had shut them people and of France. De Launay appeared confused, even out of it. “This base and avaricious soul,” says Michelet, terrified. He told Thuriot that he had hauled back the “had that which sunk its courage : he knew that he was guns, as he had been desired ; but Thuriot, desirous to spy known; the terrible memoirs of Linguet bad made De out the strength or weakness of the place, insisted on Launay famous throughout Europe. The Bastille was entering the prison, and ascending to the towers. Arrived detested, but the governor was detested, too, personally ; there, Thuriot saw the guns were actually drawn back, and and when, at length, he heard the terrible cries of the people, he demanded of the garrison that they should not fire on he felt that they were as much for him as for the monstrous the people. The invalides readily promised, the Swiss were old dungeon, and his heart sank within him."
silent. As they gazed from the battlements, a hundred and And now scarcely was midnight passed on this eventful forty feet high, what a scene presented itself! The streets, 14th of July, when the throngs increased rapidly around the squares, the garden of the arsenal, all swarming with the Bastille, and the cries grew fiercer, “Down with it!" people, and the population of the Faubourg St. Antoine "Let us storm it!” There were suddenly a number of advancing in one black mass. The governor turned pale. muskets discharged at the sentinels on the towers. De He seized Thuriot by the arm, crying, "What have you Launay, with an officer, ascended to the battlements; he done? You abuse the character of a deputy; you have heard only the distant hum of the city, and descended betrayed me!” They stood together on the tower ; De again. The populace bad run off to the Hospital of Launay had his sentinels at hand, Thuriot appeared in his Invalides, to seize the thirty thousand muskets there. power ; but the immovable man said, “ Monsieur, one word When they had demanded them the day before, Bezenval more, and I swear that one of us shall go headlong into the had coolly replied that he would write to Versailles about fosse!” At that moment, a sentinel approached Thuriot, it. Bezenyal had then no fear. He had sent the governor, saying, “For God's sake, monsieur, show yourself. The Sombreuil, a strong detachment of artillery, and he could people are impatient of your delay; they are advancing to take any assailing mob in flank, with his regiments of the attack us." Thuriot looked over the battlements, and the Ecole - Militaire. But since then he had found that the people, observing him, raised a deafening shout. French troops would not fight against the people; they As Thuriot quitted the Bastille, he said to the garrison, were actually going off in numbers to join them, and the “I shall report at the Hôtel de Ville, and the people, I Germans and Swiss were not numerous enough to engage trust, will send a civic guard to keep the Bastille with you." with the whole excited city, aided by the soldiery. At But, whilst he was gone on this errand, the crowd grew five o'clock in the morning a man entered, pale and first impatient, then furious. They advanced impetuously agitated, bidding him in God's name, to make no resistance ; | against the first drawbridge. Two men mounted the roof the barriers were all burst, the people were coming for the of the guard-house, and, with axes, cut the chains of the arms, and to endeavour to prevent them would only cause bridge, which fell down. The mass of assailants rushed torrents of unavailing blood to flow. Before nine o'clock, forwards towards the second bridge, but were met by a distwenty thousand men were in front of the Invalides ; the charge of musketry, which did deadly execution amongst city solicitor at their head, the lawyers' clerks of the them, and brought them to a stand. The firing proceeded parliament of Paris in the crowd, in their old red robes ; at once from the towers and from the loop-holes below. A several companies of French guards, and the curé of St. number of the assailants fell, whilst only two of the muskets Etienne-du-Mont actively marshalling the throng. Som- fired by the people during the whole day took effect. One brenil entreated them to wait till he received his answer only of the Swiss was killed. from Versailles, but the leader replied they had no time to The muskets were already arriving at the Hôtel de Ville. lose; the crowd rushed in, and carried off twenty-eight A deputation was dispatched, with Fauchet at its head; but, thousand muskets and twenty pieces of cannon.
amid the firing and the smoke, they were neither heard nor De Launay had made all necessary preparations, charged seen. A second followed, headed by the solicitor of the city, a dozen long guns on the towers with balls of a pound and and accompanied by a flag and a drum. The soldiers on the
half each, disposed his little force to the best advantage. towers displayed a white flag, and reversed their arms. The At an early hour, the committee at the Hôtel de Ville firing by the people ceased, and they followed the deputadispatched a deputation to him, requesting him to draw tion into the court, when they were suddenly assailed by a back his guns, promising that, if he did not fire, he should murderous fire, and several men were killed at the side of Dot be attacked. But this was promising for a party over the deputies. It is supposed that this came from the Swiss, which the authorities at the Hôtel de Ville had no power. who, being below, had not seen the white flag hoisted by the As their deputation quitted the Bastille, a very different kind invalides. The people were seized with an inexpressible rage. of man entered. This was Thuriot, a deputy of the district They believed that they had been drawn into the court of St. Louis de le Culture. Thuriot was a man violent, insidiously to be murdered, and they vowed that they would audacious, destitute of human respect, unconscious of fear make a bridge of their dead bodies for others to advance or pity. He was the very genius of this fiery revolution. 'over them to the attack. At this crisis, the people found