French Emigres in Europe and the Struggle against Revolution, 1789-1814


The Emigration during the French Revolution has often been treated with scorn. It is time to redress this imbalance and to examine the Emigration in more detail. Were the emigres the failures they were styled, by Balzac among others - tired remnants of a lost civilisation? This book seeks to explore the Emigration as both a cultural and political phenomenon, underpinned by the ideas of the Enlightenment and supported by some of the most brilliant writers and artists in France at the end of the eighteenth century. It shows that among the emigres was a much broader cross-section of French people than has previously been represented. Not all wanted to restore the absolute monarchy but few wanted a republic. The emigres were political refugees, caught between the domestic turmoil of France and the international rivalries of the European powers. Many subsequently achieved power both within and outside France. This is their story.

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