Searchable database of those who were condemned to death before, during and after the Reign of Terror
The French Revolution was a horrific time filled with madness, mutilations, massacres, murder, and mass executions between 1792-1796. It took the lives of roughly 14,000-17,000 people. Not all of the condemned were executed by the guillotine. Drownings, hangings, shootings and other heinous acts of killing people also occurred. Mass executions and massacres were daily occurrences, conducted in Nantes and other surrounding towns during the ‘Reign of Terror’ 1793-1794.
Who were these unfortunate people? What horrible crimes did they commit that warranted such an heinous death sentence? Why should we care?
From nobility to lower classes, military leaders to foot soldiers, lowest of clergy to priests and nuns, servants to actors, criminals and next door neighbors, women and children, it seems none were spared from accusations of seemingly senseless and suspected crimes that led people to be arrested, executed or murdered . The city of Lyon was destroyed, genocide at Nantes, and thousands murdered from over-populated prisons. Even those who started the Revolution such as Georges Danton were executed by the rising of those who were trying to usher in the Reign of Terror. Robespierre and his followers who were the force behind the Reign of Terror 1793-1794, were executed. Politician and attorney Jean-Baptiste Carrier , who carried out the drownings of 4 thousand men, women and children , were eventually executed. This is history albeit the carnage, anarchial and horrible. We know about the notable people and their lives of the French Revolution, but what about the other garden variety of victims? Should they be set aside? What were their names? How can I find out about them?
The answer comes with the “DICTIONNAIRE DES INDIVIDUS ENVOYÉS A LA MORT JUDICIAIREMENT” (the whole title is longer than this) recorded and penned by French historian and journalist Louis-Marie Prudhomme provides this information. The two volumes online books contains the names, places of birth, residence and trial, age, some biographical info, and charges the accused were said to have been committed. A lot of exciting events; description of the crimes, conspiracies, assassination attempts, as well to breakers of the law, counter-revolutionists, trivial crimes, such as hiding a priest or made up charges of passing ‘fake information”. Unfortunately, these dictionaries are all in French. You will need an online translator. You can easily highlight and paste the information into an online translator to give you understanding of what happened. Need to know what the French Occupations were? FamilySearch provides this tool
|This is what you might find:||What you need to know:|
|· Last Name|
· First Name
· Profession & Position
· Place of Birth (Name of town, and department.
· Place of Residence (Name of town, and department)
· Charges against the accused
· Date of Trial (Republican Calendar)
· Type of Court
· Either town or department of execution
|· This is a MASSIVE ONGOING PROJECT (check back regularly)|
· All the data is in French (you’ll need an online translator)
· There will be French departementales mistakes and spelling errors
· The database is from 1792-1796
· Not all of the condemned were executed by guillotine
· Blanks fields means there was no recorded information
· ‘Natif de’ doesn’t necessarily mean a person was born in that town
ex-vicomtesse of Baralle
age: 92 years
executed: 27 May 1794
Enter name to search, click on a result, brings up form page with all available information found
Source and Citations: Prudhomme, L. M. (1796). Dictionnaire des individus envoyés à la mort judiciairement: révolutionnairement et contre-révolutionn, pendand la révolution France (n.p.)Tome 1 & 2- Google Books