At first, the king of France seemed inclined to work with the revolution and to try to solve the problems created by it. But the influence of the queen and of the courtiers was too strong. He was pressured by them to disregard all promises he had made and to flee from France, in order to obtain aid from Austria against the revolution in France. This led to the storming of the royal palace of the Tuileries on August 10, 1792. The king and his family escaped before the mob arrived, and took refuge in the Legislative Assembly hall. The Assembly declared that the king was suspended from office and ordered that he and his family should be imprisoned. They then called a new assembly, the Convention, to decide whether France should continue to be a monarchy. On 20 and 21 September, during the Abbé Grégoire's motion, the Conventionnels steeled themselves to abolish the monarchy and establish a republic. By December, even advocating the restoration of the monarchy was punishable by death. Then one of the Assembly's most pressing task was to decide what should be the fate of the ex-ruler, Louis "Capet". So a debate started in the Convention, opposing the Jacobins and the Girondins, about whether the ruler should be judged. Firstly, it was not easy to clothe the revolt of the country against the king in the forms of law, for the country as a body had no legal standing under the old regime. There were no conventionally specifiable legal rules or moral principles by which a king could be judged, and there was no one who could judge him, that is to say exercise authority over him . Moreover, it was a legal maxim in both England and France that the king could not do wrong. The revolutionaries denied this principle, and their denial was a large part of the revolution they made.
[...] It led to the storming of the royal palace of the Tuileries on Aug The king and his family escaped before the mob arrived and took refuge in the hall of the Legislative Assembly. The Assembly declared that the king was suspended from office and ordered that he and his family should be imprisoned. They then called a new assembly, the Convention, to decide whether France should continue to be a monarchy. On 20-21 September, on Abbé Grégoire's motion, the Conventionnels steeled themselves to abolish the monarchy and establish a republic. By December, even advocating the restoration of the monarchy was punishable by death. [...]
[...] This principle the revolutionaries were committed to deny, and their denial was a large part of the revolution they made. Another problem was the opposition of the Jacobins towards a trial, as they were ready, like Morisson at the Tuileries, simply to kill the King, and his eventual execution was, in fact, a party victory for them. For them, Louis was anything but a “mere and they had multiple reasons for denying him a trial. First, he was intrinsically guilty as man can reign innocently”. [...]
[...] But some people blamed the Assembly for the condemnation of the king, and they were right to be afraid of Louis XVI death. First, Joseph de Maistre, in his “considerations on France” (1753–1821) wrote that of the greatest possible crimes is undoubtedly an attack upon sovereignty, no other having such terrible consequences. ( ) If this sovereign has not deserved his fate through any fault of his own, if his very virtues have strengthened the guilty against him, the crime is beyond description. [...]
[...] For the Jacobins, Louis XVI's death would it be the sign of the end of the crisis. Implicit in the call of Louis's death seemed to be a belief not only in his guilt and sole responsibility for the social and political crisis, but also in his power to end the crisis, through his own death. As a matter of fact, Louis expressed the hope that his imminent death would play useful role” for the French, that of a redemptive sacrifice for the nation: hope that my blood may be useful for the French and that it may appease God's wrath”. [...]
[...] Expressing fears that the king's execution might trigger civil war and inflame Europe against France, they began to argue that the Convention's decision needed to be ratified by the country at large in primary assemblies. On 14 January, the deputies voted the guilt of the king and rejected roughly a two-thirds majority the appel au people. The condemnation symbolizes the new equality of kings and citizens and their mutual subjection to the community as a whole. But is the trial morally justified? It seems to do a specific injustice to the king, who maybe did not know that his actions were criminal. [...]
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