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Characters of the French Revolution

Description: The horizontal composition includes detailed paintings of various people during the time of the French Revolution with captions.
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Date: unknown
Creator: Lesueur Brothers
Partner: UNT College of Visual Arts + Design

Toward an Ecological Understanding of the Vendée: Old Myths and New Paradigms

Description: This work explores the motivations of the two major parties in the civil war in the Vendée from 1793 to 1796. It suggests that traditional understandings overemphasize simplistic notions of the idealistic crusade; the Revolutionaries fought for Republican ideals, while the locals fought to defend traditional Catholicism. This thesis suggests that the major motive for both sides was a fight for survival that was framed and expressed in political and religious terms rather than motivated by them. The reason that these motives have been confused is a long misunderstood connection between the means of discourse, the structure of social values, and their connection to any individual’s perceived sense of safety, which suggests an ecological, or holistic, rather than a Manichaean framework.
Date: August 2011
Creator: Strietelmeier, Paul
Partner: UNT Libraries

Opera at the Threshold of a Revolution: Francis Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmélites (1953-1956)

Description: Francis Poulenc’s three-act opera Dialogues des Carmélites (1953-1956) depicts the struggles of the novice nun Blanche de la Force during the Reign of Terror of the French Revolution. The use of Latin liturgical music at critical points in the opera conveys the ritualistic nature of Catholic worship. The spiritual message of mystical substitution, along with the closely related notion of vicarious suffering, imbue the opera with a spirituality that offers a sharp contrast to earlier operatic settings of Catholic texts, particularly during the age of grand opera. Marian devotion also plays an important role in the opera. The final tableau of the opera stages the execution of Blanche and her sisters, complete with the sound of a guillotine, with the nuns singing the Salve Regina as they proceed to the scaffold. The multivalence of the final tableau highlights the importance of voice and its absence. While the nuns, onstage spectators, and the guillotine are audibly present in the scene, the priest participates solely through gesture. The surfacing of the Lacanian Real in the silent moment of traumatic shock that follows the guillotine’s first fall allows for intertextual references to the opera in Poulenc’s Sonate pour Flûte et Piano (1957) to function as a work of remembrance.
Date: December 2011
Creator: Beard, Cynthia C.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Purifying Pot of Jacobins

Description: The painting depicts a man straining the bourgeois from a pot of Jacobins.
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Date: 1793
Creator: Henriquez, Benoît Louis
Partner: UNT College of Visual Arts + Design

Marie Antoinette

Description: Biography of Marie Antoinette, starting with the death of Charles VI, emperor of Austria, in 1770. It includes a description of her childhood, her life as queen, and her trial and execution. Each chapter heading includes a short summary of events.
Date: unknown
Creator: Abbott, John S. C. (John Stevens Cabot), 1805-1877
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Enemy of My Enemy Is What, Exactly? the British Flanders Expedition of 1793 and Coalition Diplomacy

Description: The British entered the War of the First Coalition against Revolutionary France in 1793 diplomatically isolated and militarily unprepared for a major war. Nonetheless, a French attack on the Dutch Republic in February 1793 forced the British to dispatch a small expeditionary force to defend their ally. Throughout the Flanders campaign of 1793, the British expeditionary force served London as a tool to end British isolation and enlist Austrian commitment to securing British war objectives. The 1793 Flanders campaign and the Allied war effort in general have received little attention from historians, and they generally receive dismissive condemnation in general histories of the French Revolutionary Wars. This thesis examines the British participation in the 1793 Flanders campaign a broader diplomatic context through the published correspondence of relevant Allied military and political leaders. Traditional accounts of this campaign present a narrative of defeat and condemn the Allies for their failure to achieve in 1793 the accomplishments of the sixth coalition twenty years later. Such a perspective obscures a clear understanding of the reasons for Allied actions. This thesis seeks to correct this distortion by critically analyzing the relationship between British diplomacy within the Coalition and operations in Flanders. Unable to achieve victory on their own strength, the British used their expeditionary force in Flanders as diplomatic leverage to impose their objectives on the other powers at war with France.
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Date: August 2012
Creator: Jarrett, Nathaniel W.
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Revolution in Warfare? the Army of the Sambre and Meuse and the 1794 Fleurus Campaign

Description: During the War of the First Coalition, the Army of the Sambre and Meuse, commanded by Jean-Baptiste Jourdan, played the decisive role against Coalition forces in the Low Countries. Created in June 1794, the army defeated the Allies at the battle of Second Fleurus on 26 June 1794 and commenced the Coalition’s retreat to the Rhine River. At the end of the year, Jourdan led the army to winter quarters along the left bank of the Rhine and achieved France’s historically momentous “natural frontier.” Despite its historical significance, the Army of the Sambre and Meuse has suffered from scant historical attention. Based largely on archival research, this thesis provides a detailed examination of the army’s performance during the Fleurus campaign. In addition, this thesis pursues several broader themes. A detailed study of the Sambre and Meuse Army provides insight into institutional military change during the late eighteenth century. While historians traditionally argue that the French Revolution inaugurated an attendant “revolution in military affairs,” this thesis presents evidence of evolutionary changes and continuities. Another important theme is the question of the combat effectiveness of French field armies during the Revolutionary epoch. Although historians typically present the French armies as unique and superior to their Old Regime opponents, this thesis demonstrates the effective parity between the armies of Revolutionary France and the Old Regime on the battlefield.
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Date: August 2012
Creator: Hayworth, Jordan R.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Countess of Counter-revolution: Madame du Barry and the 1791 Theft of Her Jewelry

Description: Jeanne Bécu, an illegitimate child from the Vaucouleurs area in France, ascended the ranks of the Ancien régime to become the Countess du Barry and take her place as Royal Mistress of Louis XV. During her tenure as Royal Mistress, Jeanne amassed a jewel collection that rivaled all private collections. During the course of the French Revolution, more specifically the Reign of Terror, Jeanne was forced to hatch a plot to secure the remainder of her wealth as she lost a significant portion of her revenue on the night of 4 August 1789. To protect her wealth, Jeanne enlisted Nathaniel Parker Forth, a British spy, to help her plan a fake jewel theft at Louveciennes so that she could remove her economic capital from France while also reducing her total wealth and capital with the intent of reducing her tax payments. As a result of the theft, her jewelry was transported to London, where she would travel four times during the French Revolution on the pretext of recovering her jewelry. This thesis examines her actions while abroad during the Revolution and her culpability in the plot. While traveling to and from London, Jeanne was able to move information, money, and people out of France. Jeanne was arrested and charged with aiding the counter-revolution, for which the Revolutionary Tribunal sentenced her to death. Madame du Barry represented the extravagance and waste of Versailles and of Bourbon absolutism, and this symbolic representation of waste was what eventually inhibited Jeanne’s success.
Date: December 2015
Creator: Lewis, Erik Braeden
Partner: UNT Libraries