Thermidorian Reaction

Topics: French Republican Calendar, French Revolution, Gregorian calendar Pages: 3 (936 words) Published: April 30, 2013
Colin Burlison1/9/13
AP European HistoryThermidorian Reaction DBQ

In the time of the National Convention, (a governmental body existent for three years of the French Revolution) the government desired for total change from the Old Regime. The final change stemming from this desire was the introduction of the French Republican Calendar. In 1789, the Cahier de doléances (report of grievances), from the Third Estate of Château-Thierry, said that they asked for the number of religious holidays be reduced because each of them enchains the activity of a great people, being of considerable detriment to the state and the numerous disadvantages of idleness. This shows that the new calendar was more secular because of the decrease in the amount of religious holidays. The illustrations of newly named months also show that the new calendar shows more secular-slanted ideas. As shown in Document 4, the new months are named for prosperity and things they are known for. For example, the month between August 18 and September 16, is named Fructidor, after harvest time. In a letter to the National Convention from a peasant from Étampes, it says that with nine long, hard days of labor, the simple citizens want small distractions on their day of rest. During the use of the new calendar in France, people went to church a lot less because with the new calendar they would only go every tenth day, instead of going on Sundays during the Gregorian calendar (Document 7) This change to the French Republican Calendar marked the end of the old regime and the silencing of the old ways. This break from the old ways caused discontent within the people's hearts and minds, and thus the Thermidorian reaction occured.

The calendar was created mainly due to the idea that the Gregorian calendar was a Church created idea, and the government wanted to break from the church. According to Document 5, the National Convention issued a decree called the "Instruction Concerning the Era of...
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