Alexander Palace Forum

Discussions about the Imperial Family and European Royalty => French Royals => Topic started by: azrael7171918 on October 22, 2006, 08:19:13 PM

Title: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: azrael7171918 on October 22, 2006, 08:19:13 PM
I am curious if children were actually executedduring the revolution? A number of novels such as "Tale of Two Cities" and the "Scarlet Pimpernel" make reference to small children even being executed.

I find this hard to believe that a public that cold and insensitive would accept the death of a child say 5 years old or even 10.

Azrael
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: ilyala on October 23, 2006, 05:56:07 AM
i know nothing of any such executions but bare in mind that killing a child's parents wile letting the child live was a sure way to make an enemy for 10-20 years later. while cruel, i can understand the decision to kill a child of two aristocrats that had been also killed.
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: Yseult on October 23, 2006, 08:34:06 AM
I am curious if children were actually executedduring the revolution? A number of novels such as "Tale of Two Cities" and the "Scarlet Pimpernel" make reference to small children even being executed.

I find this hard to believe that a public that cold and insensitive would accept the death of a child say 5 years old or even 10.

Azrael

I have not a deep knowledge about this question, I sincerely hope that anyone could provide you more info than I...but I never had found nothing like this. I´m working from memory, but I remember that great ladies as Françoise de Choiseul-Stainville, princess of Monaco since the marriage with the second son of Honoré III, or Madeleine Olivier de Senozan, married to Archambault of Talleyrand-Périgord, were "emigrèes" together with their husbands, but the two returned to France because they were worried about their children. If I´m not wrong, Françoise had two little daughters, and Madeleine two sons and a daughter. So, the two ladies returned to France, they were arrested and they were guillotined. But no one wished to put under arrest the two daughters of Françoise, neither the three children of Madeleine.
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: palatine on November 12, 2006, 07:35:56 PM
I am curious if children were actually executedduring the revolution? A number of novels such as "Tale of Two Cities" and the "Scarlet Pimpernel" make reference to small children even being executed.

I find this hard to believe that a public that cold and insensitive would accept the death of a child say 5 years old or even 10.

Azrael

In Legacy of Death: The Remarkable Saga of the Sanson Family, Who Served as Executioners of France for Seven Generations, Barbara Levy reported that 22 people under the age of 18 were guillotined in Paris from July 14, 1789 to October 21, 1796.  Levy also reported that about 20,000 people were executed by guillotine, firing squad, or by drowning in other parts of France during those years, but did not go into detail about their ages.  In Paris in the Terror, Stanley Loomis reported that during the massacre at the prison of Bicetre in September 1792, 33 boys aged between 12 to 14 were murdered.  Loomis also reported that "girls as young as ten" were murdered when the mob subsequently attacked the Salpetriere prison, but he didn't report how many victims there were. 
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: James1941 on November 13, 2006, 01:54:44 PM
Interesting question. I would also like to ask how many children of both sexes starved to death, died of malnutrition or related diseases during the frequent famines under Louis XV and Louis XVI.
And, what were the ages of the "young" girls who were forced to serve Louis XV in his Parc des Cerfs brothels? And what were the ages of the prostitutes which served in the houses of pleasure set up in the arcades of the gardens of the Palais Royal by the Duc de Orleans?
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: Eddie_uk on November 13, 2006, 02:20:08 PM
Thank you for your post Yseult. Interesting you mention the Princess of Monaco. Apparently at first she claimed to be pregnant in an attempt to avoid the guillotine. When that failed she wrote a last letter saying how she had filthied her mouth by that lie and she cut of her hair to give to her children. Very sad.

Any more information on this interesting Princess?
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: Yseult on November 13, 2006, 02:50:28 PM
Thank you for your post Yseult. Interesting you mention the Princess of Monaco. Apparently at first she claimed to be pregnant in an attempt to avoid the guillotine. When that failed she wrote a last letter saying how she had filthied her mouth by that lie and she cut of her hair to give to her children. Very sad.

Any more information on this interesting Princess?

She was guillotined when she was just twenty seven years old, and the most sad thing it´s that one day after her death, it happened the Robespierre´s dawnfall. All that I know it´s that she was beautiful, sweet and, of course, a very motherly woman. She adored her two daughters, Honorine and Athenais. A third daughter, named, I think, Delphine, was dead in childhood.
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: Eddie_uk on November 14, 2006, 02:24:57 PM
Thank you. Awfully. awfully sad. I wonder what became of her daughters. I don't suppose they ever receieved her last letter as I believe it was found in the archives?

Any information on Madeleine Senozan?

Thank you :)
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: Yseult on November 14, 2006, 04:17:11 PM
About the children of the princess of Monaco, I really have not any more to share...It´s a pity, because she seems a very interesting figure, Eddie.

About Madeleine Senozan...I´m very interesting on this lady, but she seems elusive to me. Maybe here someone could provide us info. All that I know it´s that her full name was Madeleine Henriette Sabine Olivier Senozan de Viribille. She was a daughter of the former marquis of Viribille and she married Archambaud de Talleyrand Périgord, named Archambeau because he was a handsome man although not very clever... ;) He had not the wondreous mind of his brother, the famous Charles Maurice of Talleyrand ;)

Madeleine had two sons and one daughter: Louis, Edmond Alexandre and Melanie. As far as I know, her daughter Melanie married a man of the Noailles family, and she was one of the several ladies-in-waiting of Empress Marie Louise.
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: Eddie_uk on November 15, 2006, 07:17:47 AM
Very interesting Yseult, thanks awfully! :) I wonder of either ladies were painted my Madame Vigee Lebrun? After their parents executions it does make you wonder what became of their dear children.  :-\
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: Tanzanite on May 24, 2009, 07:53:58 AM
Does anyone know what happened to the children who's parents lost thier heads during the French Revolution?  Were they left to fend for themselves???
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: Vecchiolarry on May 24, 2009, 08:17:13 AM
Hi,

Good question, Tanzanite;  in fact, a very good question....
I, too, would be interested to know the answer to this....

Larry
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: Tanzanite on May 24, 2009, 08:54:56 AM
I have done endless searches on the internet about this, but so far I've come up with very little info - the only thing I have ever read about them is a single line in D. Cadbury's book The Lost King of France and there she states that they were left to wander the countryside...

It bothers me, being a mom to a three year old the thought of leaving her all alone to fend for herself is terrifying.

Hopefully someone on here will know  ;D
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: susana on May 26, 2009, 11:31:38 PM
Who do you mean by children of the revolution? All of the children or the royals? I'm sure some were killed like their parents, or spirited away and raised by others, or sent away for safety or became emigres or...on and on. Terrible things.
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: Mari on May 27, 2009, 04:05:00 AM
Yes, there would have been some spirited away but there were too many horrible cruel episodes.... read this:

http://books.google.com/books?id=FUlBAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA220&dq=children+of+the+French+Revolution#PPA216,M1

click on the link which covers Brittany and of course you can imagine this happening throughout the Country. I think you might like to read the entire book and it will answer many of your questions.  Read  page 216
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: LillyO on May 27, 2009, 07:51:20 PM
Hopefully there were many kind souls who tried to help these parentless children who were no doubt traumatized as well. These innocent victims  are among the saddest victims of the brutal revolutionaries. We all know how the Royal children were treated. I have often wondered what was done with the newborns of women whose pregnancies spared them the guillotine until birth had taken place. Stanley Loomis in "Paris in the Terror" says "the pregnancy of a condemned woman secured her a temporary reprieve, but upon the birth of her baby she was dragged weak and tottering to the scaffold; the baby was sent to a state orphnage." (pg. 333)  Anyone care to speculate on the conditions in these "state orphanages"? There is also an account of the Noailles women who were executed, left by Abbe Carrichon, were he tells of taking the children to the care of a relative.
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: Yelena Aleksandrovna on July 03, 2009, 07:25:33 PM
Terrible stories :-(
Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: James_Davidov on July 04, 2009, 04:46:22 AM
There were several possible outcomes for orphans of the rein of terror,


*surviving relatives (whether they were direct relatives who were spared persecution, or foreign relatives (not uncommon for established family's), all would have been obliged to step forward.  It should also be noted the cost of raising a child was not exorbitant and would not have weighed heavily for even the petite bourgeoisie)

*Convents (many noble families had connections prior to the revolution with religious orders (financial and familial), and during their captivity and trials had access to priests and monks who could arrange guardianship after their execution in any number of French of foreign convents)

*Associates & Friends (The average noble would have toured parts of the continent through either business or pleasure and established a range of connections with their foreign peers, which would have been sustained over the years due to the art of correspondence.  During the reign, many of these guardians would have been called upon to assist these enfants, and as the vast majority in foreign courts and nobles were hugely sympathetic, they would have been obliged through honour to take them in, indeed morbidly it would have been the height of fashion to have a noble orphan in London of St Petersburg...think Madonna or Jolie :S)

*Servants (guardianship was assumed by many servants, at least temporarily, as many of these people had long generational links to their respective ‘house’s’, and were fervently devoted to their masters even after they had been striped of their titles and wealth (many accounts are touching).  One should also consider that the child of even a petite bourgeoisie family could have had a range of servants who were attached solely to them, including possibly a governesses, wet nurse, nursery maid, tutors and instructors, etc, and these people would have naturally felt obliged)

If all these avenues were exhausted, as noted, it is possible that the republic would have ‘taken possession’ of these orphans, and they would have been raised poorly in an orphanage or work house, although this is unlikely, as is the image of an abandoned noble child roaming provincial France in dirty and torn silk and lace.

Title: Re: Children and the French Revolution
Post by: Tanzanite on July 11, 2009, 04:24:23 AM
Wow - I cannot thank you all enough for such great answers!!!