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French Revolution: A History. Volume 3: The Guillotine

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By: (1795-1881)

In "French Revolution: A History. Volume 3: The Guillotine" by Thomas Carlyle, readers are given a deep dive into the bloody and tumultuous events of the French Revolution, focusing specifically on the use of the guillotine as a tool of execution.

Carlyle's writing style is both captivating and informative, providing rich historical detail while also imbuing the narrative with a sense of urgency and drama. His vivid descriptions of the chaos and violence of the time truly transport the reader back to the streets of revolutionary France.

One of the strengths of this volume is Carlyle's ability to bring to life the key figures of the Revolution, from Robespierre to Danton, and to explore their motivations and actions in a nuanced way. He does not shy away from the brutality and horror of the guillotine, but also delves into the complex political and social dynamics that led to its widespread use.

Overall, "French Revolution: A History. Volume 3: The Guillotine" is a gripping and immersive read that sheds light on a pivotal moment in history. Carlyle's meticulous research and engaging prose make this book a must-read for anyone interested in the French Revolution and its legacy.

Book Description:
Of this third, and final, phase of the French Revolution, including that period known as The Terror, Carlyle comments "It is unfortunate, though very natural, that the history of this Period has so generally been written in hysterics." Carlyle's own account of the prominent personalities and "two great movements" that dominate this phase of the revolution — "a rushing against domestic Traitors, a rushing against foreign Despots" — spares us none of the drama, yet is surprisingly compassionate and understanding from an author whose own society was riven with social inequalities that might conceivably have led to insurrection. Particularly memorable are Carlyle's portraits of Danton, Marat and Robespierre, and some brief, and ultimately decisive, appearances from one Napoleon Bonaparte. - Summary by Peter Dann

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