The French Revolution
Here is my essay on the French Revolution
So the French Revolution is or has been seen by many as the most important revolution in history. Some regard it as the beginning of the modern world, while others regard it as just another tab in the long history, or wars, political crisis, and numerous events, and period of peace that occurred in European and world history. Some regard it as a period of pride for the world, as of it's idealistic values, and some as paeriod of horrific nightmares, as of the events that it unleashed.
It is fair enough to see it as emblematic of the revolutions, that have occurred across the world, and the talk and detailing of it then have a effect on politics today. It can't have been a very lovely thing to have lived through, but on the other hand, it's aims and desires of liberty, equality and fraternity, in their most simplified form seem a noble endeavour on the face if it.
Usually when the French Revolution is talked of, the huge negatives are what we talk of in Britain. This is even more so, as for Britain on the face of it, all the successes of the Revolution seemed to occur in Britain without a revolution, and more perversely we even had those benefits despite fighting to defeat it's supporters in war. This is not the case for countries like France.
Though on the other hand, could you say Britain achieved revolutions of a different type, were the Protestant Reformation's successes in Scotland from 1560, and England from earlier, a kind of laying the ground for a revolution. Were the events in Scotland in the 1640s, and England, what Christopher Hill, for England calls the English Revolution, were they equivalent. Were 1688, Wilkes, and the Chartists just the folks who finished that job. Were the events of Europe of 1848, what moved Britain and Europe towards democra. Was it the example of America and such that made it seems possible to be a liberal democracy. To be honest, I think it is a fair point of view to say that, but wrong to say they were entirely akin to the Revolution, I think the French Revolution was a event that was a catastrophe, like World War Two, a event where there was a Black and White reality, where sides had to be chosen, and from there the future fought over. 99% of us today would say we in Britain were on the right side in World War Two, with the USA and USSR, and it was a war that needed fighting and winning. Plus that thank god the right side won, for all our sakes. Though to a extent you could say the same of the French Revolution. The irony about the French Revolution is that the beliefs of it, are what we as a world in almost every country in the world believe in today. You could say Britain already had those core beliefs in it's state before we fought the war, but to extent we had less of them than the Reveoltion and were fighting for the side that opposed much of those beliefs. Surely France and Russia of the tsar and king were not the embodiments of English, Welsh or Scottish liberty. The other irony being, that some of the states, most like what the Revolutionaries wanted society to be like, of free people, and more equal than other lands, Britain and certain free parts of Austria, Switzerland and more were the places who often fought it the most. With in Naples the poor, and in Spain and Germany many patriots the people who also fought it. The irony is the core beliefs of the Revolution won everywhere in the end, and today very few people would survive in a debate if they espoused the beliefs of those who wanted to crush it.
Or is it that, actually we today are more like the societies like Britain, of free, capitalist, patriotic to the homeland, stability loving, and such, with liberty as well, than we are to the Revolutionary state that was soon established. The truth is, that the society we have today is a mix of all those values. We are a mix of the values, of the stability loving, more conservative freedom living values, and the equality loving, freedom living, society as well. In fact we have even some of the old Ancien beliefs as well.
The conclusion surely is, that it is like that joke I heard on a radio 4 show, when a French peasant went up to the king, and asked if they could give into all the reforms he was looking for. The king in the joke says OK then, the truth is that would have been better. It did not happen though, a revolution occurred instead.
So anyhow, here is a bullet point style list I have kind of stating the positives of the French Revolution. Then I state the brutality of the atrocities committed by both sides, none of which is really a good thing for the Revolution.
So first of all,
It achieved in the period of the Revolution
* It freed 1.5million French serfs
* It essentially freed 10 million French sharecroppers, by ending feudalism, and handing allot of land to cultivators.
* It upped spending on welfare, even instituting pensions, for a large period. which helped there be no real famines
* beforehand orphans were kept virtually in stacks, well not that bad, but virtually
* The French Revolution began the first state pensions, after a idea by Thomas Paine,
* It legalised the Protestant and Jewish religions, and let each of these become officials.
* It allowed Jews, and Protestants freedoms, they were barred from, in being allowed to migrate, and become any job.
* It created more equality, so that a lord was not now felt to be superior, just for being a lord
* It freed 10,000 African slaves in France
* It severely restricted the horrendous practice of the Castrati, in the end ending thos practice, that was causing the deaths of thousands a year, purely for the sake of singing.
* It allowed religious members to give up their religious ways. Like loads of monks, and priests quit, as the Revolution allowed them to. (Though most of them would have preferred to have stayed on in that job, it gave thejm a livelyhood)
* It disbanded the discriminatory guilds, that banned many lower class people from certain jobs, and helped make prices high.
* It stopped the practice for enclosures, A major success seeing what happened in Britain, which was the taking of land, by the rich, for their ways. In France this Highland Clearances style project was ended, so French agriculture helps France have a higher Life expectancy than Britain
* It banned the remnants of torture, something that according to rumour was still occurring before the Revolution for even minor political criticism. (Though I can not believe it really ended during the suffering of the period, but is did after the crises)
* It rampantly reduced duelling. A practice that fell rapidly after the Revolution replaced the ideals, of honour and macho-chivalry, with equality liberty and fraternity. It apparently made duelling unfashionable.
* It let the poor have rights as equal, as the rich, as I said before, so they could more easily become rich. like the American dream.
* It ended tithes to aristocrats, and the church which saw them get loads of cash, off peasants
* It ended other unfair church rulings over the population, such as restrictions on them, and forcing them to church, and also cash to them.
* It ended million dead famines. in 1770 Voltaire states a million died in France of famine.
* It gave the French left power, and from there, they placed greater workers rights, and such on the people, not that there were no rights for people before the revolution,
* The guy who started the Olympics supported the French Revolution,
* It started female emancipation, as the starters of the feminists started in this event
* It legalised gays, so they were not punished anymore
* It closed corrupt galling wasteful palaces
* It legalised Deists, and allowed them to be important
* It abolished arbitrary court power of the king
· It abolished special privileges aristocrats had, like challenging lowers to duels, and such, and in cases attacking, and beating them,
* it abolished corvee reducing it loads
* it abolished road block toll roads and canals, which helped both Gypsies, and trade,
* It allowed more different forms of marriage, more liberal
* it allowed divorce
* It opened more schools
* It in the European wars, freed the remaining Portuguese slaves
* It created free speech for people to be able to condemn the regime long term, though not during the revolutionary period, it has to be said,
* it stopped the kidnappings by religious orders
* legalised poaching, of game and mushrooms, even during famines
* no threat of Gypsies being deported in a genocidal scale to the colonies, as before the Revolution the king was planning to evict all Gypsies to colonies.
* legalised high heels for lower classes, not that most of them want that anymore,
* St Pierre and Miquelon people, were not evicted after, it's a colony in Canda, of France, it seems the Revolution saved them there,
* Freer movement
* It replaced archaic muddled up, weights and measures, that were for illiterate eras, with decimilisation
* It freed Haiti's slaves, as of Haitians moves, (though it has to be said, horrible wars were fought there in the next decades between France and Haiti, and others, in the end they got their freedom,
* It freed millions of neighbouring European states, from serfdom, some by conquest and some like Prussia as of realising this step had to be made, so long term freed Russia's serfs,
* Therefore it freed millions of neighbouring land's corvee and sharecroppers style citizens, sharecropprs is kinda a bad term in this context but I think it translates.
* It fell lower class inferiority complexes, instead of feeling to be their inferiors, that kind of has more dissapeared,
* It created nicer prisons and asylums, and started to try and solve insanity by science
* It freed Maltese Jewish slaves, more further down the page
* It ousted the illiberal Egyptian artistocratic dictatorship, though on the other hand sadly fought a war there, well Napoleon, and he was kind of the establishment of the revolution,
* it ended Ragusan mass inequality caste systems (Ragusa was a state on the Adriatic Coast)
* It sees and encourages some Russian liberalism, in Estonia quickly, it ended serfdom there quicker than the rest of the land,
* it encouraged democracy in Europe and the World, with the US revolution of a little earlier, though maybe the USA was the land who encouragd this more, as their democracy was successful,
* it brought equality before law in France, and a fairer justice system
* it inspired a Faeroese trader to break the faminous conditions of his land, saving loads of lives, and inspiring freed trade there and in Iceland,
* It encouraged a fall in anti-Irish views, as of causing the end of the Irish Protestant parliament
* this all reduced Irish inequality long term, over a Century, which in the end stopped the famines, or actually it when all Irish people got the vote, as they got more power, so government could not ignore the, as it had in mid 18th C and the Mid 19th C famines, and the vote only came to more Irish people in the late 19th Century as of a fear of the elites fear of a Revolution in Britain
* it liberates many Poles, yes only briefly, but that brought cheer to some, for a while, which is more than nothing, and good,
* It encourages South American independence revolts, which long term freed it's people. i.e in Mexico, from feudal oppression
* it fells famine across Europe, from large scale in 1770, across Europe, to hardly any in Revolutionary occupied areas, after 1789, as the regimes now feared the people, so made greater efforts to care for them,
* it encourages colleges, for more person,
* it attacked poverty in France
* it rose the life expectancy
* it liberates many slaves
* It liberates the Switz off some oppressive feudal regimes, suprising fact as Switzerland is a land famed for self made freedom, which it rightly can claim a lot of the credit for. I am not saying Napoleon did, I am saying certain revolutionary liberals did in this time in theor own cantons. Inspired by the same ideals, except the reign of terror bit.
* It speeds up German trade, as of liberalising aspects of their society and economy,
* It speeds up Monaco and Avingon trade, and abolishes many of their bad feudal ways,
* It slams Andorran feudal taxes
* It causes Spanish liberalising
* It causes Britain's 1831 democratisation, see below,
* it starts proper welfare, some make the claim that post 1870s Germany had the first Welfare State, not quantifying that statement in any way, actually revolutionary France, started one beforehand, I hope this sorts that out, then again Rome had the dole, so maybe it did,
* it makes people's idealists our philosophers, who need to be up there as of a special brain, it's not some random king any more, not that they have nothing to offer, in wisdom,
* Helps Corsica, suppresses it's brigands,
* aids Channel Isles by more money to it,
* Makes Britain surrender more power to Quebec, helping it,
* Attacks Sardinian feudalism
* helps Portuguese liberals
* encourages Greek freedom, if you look at the family tree, or family history of their revolution, most were inspired by French Revolutionary beliefs, as was a Attaturk in Turkey, so if not for these, both these lands would be under feudal slavery, maybe,
* allows women to inherit more
* invents the tin can
* develops a age consent, which is good morally,
* Deciphered hieroglyphics
* The first Museums, some say the showing of the Royals treasures by the Republic in 1793 was the first, truly public one
* Some also claim the opening of royal parks allowed picnics, in France, a small thing to many, but something quite great for another large selection of the people,
* ups the treatment of solders, and navy
* Makes French more official than Latin, and more easy to understand French, so the French people can liase with government sections more efficiently and comfortably, very good,
* meritocracy upped immensely, good for many many, which in a way could help all, not just for those people, but now the higher up people were more talented which helped us all,
* All the far right regimes of the 20th C opposed THE French Revolution, the 2 worst German regimes, thought it was terrible, as did the Chinese Empire, Japanese empire, Belgian Congo and it's prior Belgian king, and the Russian Empire.
On the other hand, some claim 2 to 6 million died in the Napoleonic Wars across the world, and possibly upto a million or so in the Revolutionary Wars. So it is not for me to say if it is worth it.
Then, there is the battle of which side had thw most gruseome actions.
Famously the Revolution had 2 major horrible events, the Reign of terror when thousands were executed in Paris, and thousands more in the crushing of a revolt in the Vendee. This is the symbol of the bararity and chaor of the revolution, and what is what lost so much support for it in Briain. On top of this under Napoleon, French forces comitted massacres in the thousands in Iberia and Italy, and numbers in Egypt as well.
Then there is the "White terror", where the forces against the Revolution comitted attrocites. The Vendee's fighters comitted some attrocities likely not as much as the revolution, and again there were other numbers across France. With a small range of massacres after the Revolution in 1815. In all, the Revolution in France executed getting on for triple tens of thousands, while the white terror barely executed 1000, not including whatever happened in Vendee. So pretty horrible. Then outside of France, Napoleon comitted massacres of slaves, or his armies did, in the Carribean.
Meanwhile the Ancien forces massacred 20,000 in Praga, Poland, in the 1790s, ma likely similar number to the revolution in Naples of over 10,000, and a similar number in Iberia of hundreds or thousands. Again in British POW isles thousands died of misstreatment.
So it was a much more brutal and nasty war than some give credit for.
It is not a fashionable thing to do, as many split the revolutionary regimes and Napoleon into 2 groups, to me considering the split between the Ancien regime and the Revolution I think it is OK to put Napoleon and the revolution as one group, he was just the consolidation of the revolution.
So the main objection for most people about the Revolution is the pain and deths. Mainly the wars and the Reign of Terror. Would it be OK, to claim the 2 to 6 million who died of it, were the fault of the Ancien regimes. That the kings and elite were asking foreign powers to help crush the Revolution, asking Britain, Austria, Prussia to do this. Plus that this sort of coalition had acted against other revolts in the 1780s, like in the Benelux countries. Also would it be OK to say, that the ending of serfdom, across Europe, saved more lives than the amount of people who died in the war. If I was one of the people who died I would not agree, but maybe if I was one of those who lived as of liberalising, then I would. The problem with saying it was worth it as of the lives it saved, is that can lead to the deadly idea of saying well you need to break a egg to make a omelette, and in that case, you could argue for all sorts of horrible killings as you believed they were for the greater good. When history proves less and less killing more peace and such is the best way of making a omeelette. Even then, my view is the ancien were responsible, really, they should have just accepted reform, and not warred. No way though can you take away culpability from the revolutionary sides.
There was a revolt of peasants and Sorbs in Saxony in 1790 which half won, and hald was defeated.
Some like to claim the wars caused world war one and world war two, as of encouraging standing armies and such. I disagree, I say both those wars were caused by Ancien loving powers, and there were wars like the 7 years war, and the US Civil war which showed the trajectory of war. I think it is exajerated to claim the Revolution created nationalism, as identity existed in the 18th Century. There was a belief in German staes, and France even before the Revolution.
Then the worst thing of all is the horrible hellscape of the Reign of Terror, and the Vendee. There are all sorts of books stating how many were killed in brutal massacres and executions, too shocking to detail. I prefer putting them into bare stats, then I do not need to think about the horribless of that all, though the historians who do, are great people for their research, even if I am sure it can be a fascinating subject. The only thing you can say about this is, well other regimes comitted massacres. The problem there is I thik the litmus test for a awful regime, that should be hated is that it killed people, executed people, and such like. It is OK defend your country, but massacres are the proof your regime is as disaster. Even then though, the fact is, we today are a society more in keeping with the beliefs of the Revolution, than the Ancien values. Well how do we defend that, well what I say is, that we are a society that has laearned from the mistakes of ancien, and revolutionary regimes, and that is why we are peace loving regimes of today, post revolution, and post ancien. Also, to be fair, the Ancien regimes were not that nice either. So look at France itself, across history, there was the terrible massacres of the Cathars, in the Middle Ages, the Hugennouts in the wars of Religon in the 16th Century, and the Fronde in the 17th Century, all of which seem to have had higher execution totals per head of population than the Revolutions' massacres, likely in the tens of thousands. There were all sorts of smaller scale execution totals across those time periods as well. Such as the executions of Proestants Camisards in the early 18th Century which were not as big as those other ones, but substanial. Plus the 1848 right wing, "clearing of the streets" of paris which killed some, but not at the levels of some events listed here. Then the strangest was the Commune of 1870, where Royalist or establishment forces seem to have executed 20,000 people, labelled rebels for the Commune, after the crushing of a revolt. The odd thing is, that the French right wing elite did not turn the state into what they wanted from this. What occurred is as of debates over the French flag, the French people supported the Tricolour, and debates of honourable choices made by specific establishment people, and such, then elections suprisingly brought to power liberals and leftists who pretty soon, installed what was quite a liberal society for the time. Since that time other than World War Two, France has been led by governments that are proud of the Revolution. Then there were of course the terrible massacres by the Vichy regime, and the killings of tens of thousands of collaberators after world war two. So in the end the more peaceful value sof the revolution won, but it took time, and the murderous elements of it, wer not it's leaders anymore.
Then compare with Ancien regimes across the world, well during the period 1770 to 1820, it is fair to say the Revolutionary side's regimes executed more people than the Ancien, but the Ancien sides may have massacred more, causing the massacre executions total to be similar. On the one hand you have Europe, well Russia comitted that massacre in Poland, Naples had it's terrible events. You could say for Europe, when you remember Britain executed nearly 1000 rebels in Ireland in the 1790s, and 1 Scotsman by the state in Scotland, that even with all that, the Revolutionaries, likely killed more in executions across Europe than the Ancien regimes for those stats but there is something else. The problem is there are 2 where figures are easy to determine, on the one side the Russian massacre in Poland, and on the other the Reign of Terror in Paris and most if France, outsie the Vendee. The 2 which are very muddied, are what on earth happened in Naples, and what on earth happened in the Vendee. There are claims for both of tens of thousands, with mainstream historians argueing figures that are very divisive. I think it is fair to say though that in Europe, the Revolutionary army killed or massacred more for those ones put together, mainly as of Vendee, though how much more is impossible to determine effectively. I would not be suprised if a genuine unbiased review found it was between minus 10 and 100 percent more. Naples total may be one that actually meant the Ancien killed more, but it is so uncertain. The thing is that in Russia there was another war in this era, the war with the Turks, well there were 2, one in the 1760s and one in the 1780s to 90s, and in that conflict in places like Chocim, the Russian princes ordered massacres. The numbers massacred in this conflict by the Ancien Russian regime, may have been in the low thousands or much more, so it is quite possible, as other killings that went on in this mass war, that in terms of massacres the ancien and revolutionaries drew. There was also a other Russian Turkish was in the 1810s, where they took Dagestan and Modolva so surely there were some more evictions and massacres. The wars in the Circassian areas by Russia were worse in the mid 19th Centuty, but were not good in this era.
Then you bring in the next level of democide, which is just letting people die, in a sick way. Well the Revolution let people die in the prisons, 10,000 is a reasonable estimate for the reign of terror, while the British allowed French prisoners to die on Carbrera. 10,000 is a good estimate of the death total there. Then on top of this, 10,000 likely also died in Devon, in British prisons and hulks there, of the high deaths rates. Surprisingly the French treated British prisoners a little better. So that puts the Ancien ahead on that total. Also in the Revolutionary war in the USA, the Loyalists and Patriots died in large numbers in Hulks, prison ships, the patriots more so. Also about 800 died in massacres in the US revolutionary war, more by loyalist sides that patriots. Plus there were some massacres in the Indian wars, of that time, but not on reign of terror levels at all. Though the USA trail of tears much later was a thing on that level, though I do not put it in the 1780 to 1820 timeframe. I think in total Russia's evictions of Crimeans in the 1790s, some of which was voluntary, and such mean that in Europe the massacres and prison and eviction democide total was roughly even between Ancien and Revolutionary sides, as of deaths totals from these forced evictions, with the second level of massacre causing them, the callous allowing people to die in prisons style deaths, putting the ancien equal or above in death totals. Also in 1812 Russia took Moldova, anbd fearing the bringing back of serfdom this caused populations to flee. I mean the Highland Clearances was occurring the 1790s and 1800s, and the people forced off the land, would have been dying in their thousands when you look at the conditions of ships and of where they ended up on the coast. No doubt. Even if they ended up in a British city, the life expectancies of some poorer parts mean that you can class the difference between their normal life expectancy as a democide.
You could say there was a democide in shipping convicts to Australia as most were petty crimes, or political crimes, so people dying in these voyages was democidal, you could put that at low thousands or even just hundreds, to be fair, for the 1790 to 1815 period. Yes prisons were also bad, but this was going beyond prison. I am not saying prisoners can not be punished but this goes a bit far.
Then what about Russia, when France sent that army in to Russia the Grande armee, and the Russians cleverly defeated them by withdrawal in the 1810s. Well tens of thousands of French died in captivity, but it was winter, and the Russians did make a huge attempt to keep the captured invaders alive, with many opting to live in Russia at the end of the war. Then again some were killed on the spot in surrender, I am not sure how many, and such, so we could add 1000 massacred by the Russians in that situation. Then again the french were invading the country, and there was no policy of killing the French, and if anything it would be suprising if the invaders did not do bad stuff as well. I am no expert on the subject but I think they were defending their country and treated the invaders comparitevly OK, not perfect, but OK.
I think it is fair to say 200 to 1400 died under Napeolon in Europe of massacres outside Southern Italy, like 100 por so in Switzerland. and 1,000 to 2,000 in France in 1795 in massacres and executions in 1795 to 1800, maybe 1 third rightist, the rest leftist massacres.
Also 600 masons were killed by the right in Portugal during the French rule. There was a French massacres in Iberia, but was all pretty much Ancien, and Revolutionary similar death totals, or is it Napoleon and Revolution.
There were also smaller scale executions and massacre totals from Transylvania to Austria and Germany which kind of in a small level were higher in kill totals by Ancien regimes. I read that in 1764 there were massacres that reached over 500 Hungarians by the AUstrian royal army, still tiny numbers compared to the reign of terror. A Wallachian Peasant revolt saw some numbers as well.
I am not going to mention Albanian blood feuds, the murders involved in the creation of castrati, or duelling as part of the comparision even though they were Ancien cultural ideas.
I think it is fair to say there were massacres in the Turks and Serbs wars of the early 19th Century, surely similar stats to each other.
Also Hungary killed some Jacobins in the revolutionary era, and Prussia did a massacre in a German Village.
Bucharest had a pogrom that murdered 128 Jews, and Britain hung some mutineers. I class these as kind of ancien.
I should add there were small numbers of French rioters deaths at the hands of the state just before the revolution saw the revolutionaries take power, but these are small numbers comparitevly, and did I say executions in small numbers of revolutionaries after the Napoleon regime. The WHite terror outside the Vendee surely executed just over 1000 in France, maybe including rioter deaths by the state 1789-1792. No, they add on a bit more.
1789 France, hundreds of landowners and elites killed in riots, and 33 peasants executed at least,
1799 certain 4000 massacred by Royalist sack on Naples, and 100 executed by the Royal Navy, sadly, a stain on a great institution that ended the slave trade,
Also you could say the royalist assasination attempt a bomb to call Napoleon in 1800 was the first terror attack, it was called the infernal machine, and killed some bystanders. 52 in total, though in honesty surely there were other things like that before.
Lastly there is the third scale of massacre, likely not a massacre in some senses. The shelling of cities for strategic and forced surrender methods. Well we Brits killed some thousands via our superior navy in that war, which really did not have much of a comparison. These were in Naples and Denmark, and south Frannce. This was all in the middle single figure thousands. So pretty bad there, but I would not rate it with prison deaths, and massacres. I mean what about wars and famines they are just as bad, really.
Then you get outside of Europe., Well on the one hand the revolution ended slavery in Haiti and some other colonies. Also on the same hand Britain killed a lot of people in places like Grenada in revolts. Napoleon's forces also restarted slavery but lost their war attempt and comitted massacres. There was a lot of bloodshed on both sides, but all in all, the ending the slave trade towards Haiti means that ancien slavers kills in Africa, and slave ships' deaths, saw surely the ancien slavery system kill more i terms of massacres and such in the long period of this time, in massacres and proper democides than the massacres by Napoleon and the Haitian slave rebelions. Also when the Revolution ended slavery Britain started ending the slave trade. There were also many deaths in other slave revolts like the Demerera revolt in Guyana, and the USA, which surely puts the ancien slaver regimes as worse in kills.
The total kills by Napoleon and the planters were huge in Gualope, and Haiti, while the British Empire, killed far less it did bad stuff in this era, such as evcting Jamaican Maroons, and St Vincent and Grenadines Africans and Arawak people, causing about a couple of thousand deaths due to no resources.
In Egypt Napoleon again was responsible for attrocities. 3,000 Albanians, a large number of criminals and also rebels, this all was pretty bad indeed. This was all part of the war to defeat the British Empire.
There is no defence for this kind of imperialism, I mean Egypot was in poverty but this was no help. The liberalising of the west did inspire some Egyptians overtime though, As it is is usually better to lead by example than invasion.
It can be said some Wahabis comitted massacres in this period, but even if you class them as Ancien, really imperialism is usually worse than ancien. Except for some things. The wahabis in Arabia likeley comitted as high a kills as France in Egypt. Although likely most would prefer to be ruled by their own ancien regime unless it was very despotic than a foreign imperial one.
On the other hand the European Ancien imperial moves were just as bad. Britain was seeing the Aborigines of Australia deplete in numbers from this period in evictions and some comparitivly smaler scale massacres. Also there were grim wars in India, Clive of India, and the Bengal famine, and massacres equivalent in Sri Lanka, to what occurred in Egypt in numbers. Though on the other hand the Indian princes did some massacres as well. So it is not fair to say the British were especially worse than anyone else there, except in relation to famines in India. Also some say the amount of Indians massacred in the crushing of the Indian mutiny may have compared with the reign of terror.
Also there were some pretty terrible massacres in the Americas at the time, such as the Spanish crshing of the Tupac Amaru rebellion of the 1780s, plus some in Mexico as well. Plus Portugal was doing some massacre style activity in Paraguay as well. With the Jesuit colonies in Paraguay depleted by slavers.
Also Brazil was seeing slavery and oppression of slaves and natives occur a6t this time.
I think Spain was also doing mean stuff in Chile, v the Mapuche, and the Philippines, and there was a form of slavery they had on natives.
Plus the Europeran South Africans were comitting bad deeds massacre style in South Africa, as well as some African South Africans as well. I am not going to try and not be mean to anybody there, as all people are good, There is a claim 3000 Bushmen were assasinated by colonial moves by the South African Europeans 1770 - 1790s in the era, which was bad, but no worse than what Britain as doing in places, but still horrible.
I think the Spanish royals massacred more than the the rebels in the indepdence revolts of South America but that is a different category anyway. I think the Llaneros massacres were the ones that made them the worse during indep revolts. These indep revolts were more European orgin rebels than natives, it took time for natives to reclaim power in lands or get a share.
China, India and Indonesia obviously are there own ctagory and the rest of the world.
The worst British execution totals were the witch killings in 1590s Scotland, and England in the civil war, like Aberdeen and Bolton, the 144 executed in 1685 in West England after some battles known as the bloody assisez, the killing times of covenanters in the 18th Century Scotland, by the king's forces that killed at least 80, and the Peterloo massacre of 18 dead in 1819, the 22 who died in the Newport Rising of 1839, and the 500 who died in the Gordon riots of 1780, of London, some say 1500 were executed after the peasants revolt in England in the 1380s, There were a number of executions after Culloden by the state as well, the number may reach the hundreds. Plus evictions of Acadians in the 7 years war that killed thousands from North America's French. Also in the Civil war in England, there were lots of parliamentarians who died after being sent out of West England, in ways that were cruel, as they had no resources, and parliament and the king did some level of extra judical killings. Also Henry VIII did a lot of executions of rebels, and the clans of the Highlands comitted a few nasty massacres against each other, just like the rest of Britain, had been doing in the Middle Ages. Also there were a lot of massacres in Ireland by parliament, Cromwell, and the royalists and Irish forces, and possibly Scottish forces. Also the massacre or sack of Berwick may have caused 15,000 deaths, and Bouddica and the Romans and who knows what may have done bad stuff, and the Vikings.
Hexham riots 1761 Cumbria, 50 killed by government milltia,
The most astonishing period of rebellion in Britain was the 1830s, when in 1831 20 people plus died in riots across England, the Swing riots, of executions and murders, Bristol in pro reform of parliament riots saw at least 4, and possibly 500 die in riots, surely a number in between. There were also deaths in other parts of England, with events in Nottingham and Derby and London. Plus the Merthyr rising of 1831 saw several killed, and a hanging by the state as well. Scotland had it's rebellions in the 1810s, of that level. All in all though there is no doubt Britain suffered much less badly from the kind of horrific violence that occurred in France in the revolution. Which as a British person I can be grateful for. Really Britain is among the most lucky lands in the world in recent history comparatively, with it's lack of recent civil wars and such. I like to think it was parliament and something, that made this so, and the British people having a safer political ideology. Some feel the French Revolution and 1831, made the great reform act occur, and so start Britain's move to democracy. Though likely it was also the success of the USA, and the moves of the Chartists.
The worst massacres in Western Europe in the 20th Century were in the Spanish civil war mostly by the right, and by the far right IN Germany Benelux, and France, and Italy. Which proves the left were nicest and best.
All in all, I think it is fair to say that the French Revolution is like the second world war, a war that occurred. For the second world war, it would be better if it never happened, both sides did bad things, and in the end the allies were 1000 times better than the Axis, and needed to fight and win, which we can all be proud of. For the French Revolution it would have been better if it had never happened, and all that good stuff it caused had just appeared, but it is much more debatable if it was worth it. Surely not to many people who lived then, but do we owe our freedoms as much to it, and other revolutions as we do to the allies winning WW2. It is a tough one, but best of all, the best thing to do is to have a society where revolutions do not need in any sense to occur as they do not need to, where world wars do not occur as they do not need to. Each are lessons from history in their own mad ways. The only thing we can do is learn from history, make sure we have a fair society, make sure we do not get too nasty and warring with each other and all that kind of thing. This is a very dark subject, but the joy to take from it, is that what a society we have in Britain, Scotland England Wales and Ireland, North and south where we do not do this kind of thing anymore. I give the credit to democracy, and pro peace pro jaw jaw people, and how we have a state that is for the people, not for a elite. So it is fair to be proud to be British or Scottish or English or Welsh, or Irish or Northern Irish as of these brilliant advances away from civil wars and massacres. Or even proud of the European Union as of it's pro peace pro freedom pro equality moves stuff I feel. as well. All against hatred and such likes. Also Britain helped abolish the slave trade and beat the Nazis, which makes up for all the bad. Seeing how much pain and war occurred in the 18th and 19th Century it does show Britain had something sorted by the time of the revolution except for Ireland, and the Highlands, and it is amazing how peaceful it was. So well done Britain. I think all this proves that equality fratnerity and liberty are the best way, but better even that is stability and order and fairness and sensible rule. Revolution ofr ths ake of it is not needed, democracy and functioning government and fairness and elections and free speech is what is best. Yes revolutionaries achieved great advances, but stability and many other things also. Stability is very key amd important. So the last thing I would want is a revolution, or a war, but I think we can be greateful for the advances made by Chartists and pro the people moves. Though we can not support executions any did. It shows we need tolerance and respect for eavfh other;s views, except for support for violence and oppression. So down with the reign of terror, and the Vendee etc, but long live the values, of freedom and equality and defending your rights. and democracy.