History, Holidays & Observances on January 21

Bookworm Room | 1/21/2020 | Wolf Howling
MicaellaMicaella (Posted by) Level 3
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1793 – After being found guilty of treason by the French National Convention, Louis XVI of France is executed by guillotine.

The blade fell. It was 10:22 am. One of the assistants of Sanson showed the head of Louis XVI to the people, whereupon a huge cry of “Vive la Nation! Vive la République!” arose and an artillery salute rang out which reached the ears of the imprisoned Royal family.

Revolution - Violence - Terror - September - Massacres

The French Revolution devolved into violence and terror with the September Massacres in 1792, marking the start of the Reign of Terror, when those holding power in the government turned the began the murder of their perceived enemies. Paul Marat famously began the massacres with a speech to the Parisian mobs, “good citizens . . . go to the Abbaye . . . seize priests, and especially the officers of the Swiss guards and their accomplices and run a sword through them.”

Louis XVI, executed this day on the guillotine before cheering crowds in Paris, wasn’t guilty of treason. He was guilty of being the King in a line of monarchs stretching back over a millennium. For those giving birth to socialism – for that is what the Revolution birthed – there could be no room for competing ideas, old or new. That was true for the monarchy, and it was true for religion as well. As Denis Diderot had said, “man will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest.”

World - Competition - Revolution - Revolution - Stakes

Since 1792, the world has been in a competition to see which will win out, the American Revolution or the French Revolution. The stakes could not be higher. The American Revolution represents the high water mark of the Enlightenment, with God-given individual rights existing beyond the reach of government. The French Revolution represented the end...
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