Federalist Revolt

The Federalist revolt was a counter revolution to the French revolution which occurred between May and October 1793. The federalist revolt began as a result of the attacks on the convention on the 31st of 1793 when sans-collates stormed the convention. The conservatives (federalists) appalled the actions of the sans-culottes fled Paris and began numerous rebellions. The federalist revolt was lead by conservatives of the convention who were mostly provincial revolutionaries who believed in representative democracy. Between May and June 1793 the Girondins were purged from the convention by the Jacobins and the Sans-culottes, 29 Girondins deputies were arrested and the majority were executed by the guillotine. The remaining Girondins and federalist’s feared for their lives and fled Paris to Bordeaux and started the federalist revolt.

Nature of the event
On April 29th Bordeaux rose in revolt and the federalist’s began a number of rebellions of various seriousness throughout France’s provinces and regional cities. The federalist didn’t want to stop the revolution they wanted to protect the revolution from the “Direct Democracy” pressure being forced upon it by the sans-culotte and the Jacobins.

Reaction of the Revolutionary Government
The federalist’s in Lyon the centre of the Federalist revolts planned to raise an army of 10.000 men and hoped to March on Paris and the convention but they lacked equipment, personnel and experience so were unable to do so. The Convention responded firmly to this challenge by sending a large army comprised of national guardsmen and professional soldiers to destroy the federalists and the city. In contrast to the federalists forces the revolutionary army was well equipped and comprised of loyal and experienced troops.

The revolutionaries laid siege to Lyon and put down the other areas of federalist revolt which included Marseille, Toulon and Bordeaux
On October 9th 1793 after hard fighting the siege of Lyon ended with the federalist’s being totally defeated most of their leaders fled into exile. The revolutionary government was furious over the revolt and the siege of Lyon and ordered 2000 federalist soldiers captured at Lyon to be executed. The federalist revolt was effectively crushed and all remnants of it eliminated from revolutionary France.

Matt Ash