Skip to comments.Washington did not rescue Paine from French imprisonment
Posted on 04/16/2019 11:59:39 AM PDT by CondoleezzaProtege
George Washington refused to come to the rescue when the pamphleteer who put him on his high horse faced the guillotine...
Citizen Thomas Paine, whose pamphlet Common Sense helped ignite the American Revolution, was an enthusiastic early supporter of the French Revolution. He received a heros welcome when he arrived in Paris in 1792 and was even granted honorary French citizenship and a seat in the National Convention, the body charged with writing a constitution for the new republic. But Paine angered Maximilien Robespierre and other Jacobin extremists when he urged the Convention to spare the life of the deposed French king, Louis XVI. Instead, Jacobins brandished the kings severed head in front of a cheering crowd. Then they proceeded to round up thousands of suspected counterrevolutionaries who, Paine observed, fell as fast as the guillotine could cut their heads off. Now theyd come for him, too.
Paine believed two lucky circumstances might help him keep his own head: He was still officially an American citizen, and he was an old friend of President George Washington. Immediately after his arrest he penned a letter by candlelight to Gouverneur Morris, Washingtons envoy in Paris. Morris refused to intervene...
The president had little patience for revivals of the moods of 1776. He and members of his Cabinet believed that otherwise tractable Americans were being infected with dangerous French ideas about liberty and equality. The administrations foreign policy leaned toward England and excoriated French extremism.
Paine would not return to the United States until nearly a decade later, after Jefferson was elected president and the Republican Party was in ascendancy. But he had long since become a potential liability to any party in power, and his book The Age of Reason (written in part during his imprisonment) drew accusations of scandalous atheism.
(Excerpt) Read more at realclearhistory.com ...
This part is incorrect.
Paine would not return to the United States until nearly a decade later, after Jefferson was elected president and the Republican Party was in ascendancy.
The Republican Party was formed in the 1850s...no?
Just one example, Google the Citizen Genet Affair.
Poor ol' Tom didn't foresee the dark and violent turn the Revolution would take or the landmines it created in American politics.
I didn't know until I watched the program that Thomas Paine had lived for 6 years in the English town of Lewes, and it is said Lewes is where he formed his political views.There's a Thomas Paine Society UK, the house he lived in, in Lewes is a historical site, and there's also a statue of him in Lewes.
Right...The Republicans replaced the Whigs, IIRC.
Washington and Paine were unlikely comrades from the outset. In 1776, Washington was a Virginia planter with deep roots in America, august in manner if not yet experienced in military achievement. Paine was an English urbanite, a refugee from failure as tobacco shop owner and excise officer who had arrived in Philadelphia in 1775 and found a last-ditch vocation as writer and activist. Washington was reserved; Paine talked constantly. Washington was fastidious about clothes and cleanliness; Paine was not noted for hygiene. But during the War for Independence they became close allies and fast friends.
Jefferson was all on board with the French Revolution, and people were trying to warn him it wasn’t all it was cut out to be and that he was making a mistake to support it.
Eh. I appreciate what Paine did with “Common Sense”, and it is true he may have “saved the revolution”, but he didn’t put Washington on his “high horse”.
I think they meant the whigs. Jefferson was a Democrat.
Which would correspond to neither of the major parties in Lincoln's time nor in ours.
Yes, you are correct...the Republican Party came much later as a result of the abolitionist movement within the Whigs.
There was a Democratic-Republican Party early on, though:
” The Democratic-Republican Party was the political party organized by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison in 1791-93. It stood in opposition to the Federalist Party and controlled the Presidency and Congress, and most states, from 1801 to 1824, during the First Party System.” — www.definitions.net/definition/democratic-republican%20party
Jefferson’s party which we know today as the Democrat-Republican was often just called the Republican party. (Modern historians call it Democrat-Republican I doubt if they used the hyphenated moniker!) After Jackson it was pretty much the Democrat party, the use of the word Republican as a party label didn’t occur until a coalition of Free Soilers, Northern Whigs, & others picked up the name and formed the Republicans in Ripon Wisconsin roughly 1856.
Party names\labels come and go but its always the Federalist vs non-Federalist argument. How much central government is enough, how much is too much!
Jeffersons Democratic-Republicans later had their name shortened to Democratic, the forerunners of todays Democrats. The Republican name remained unused until the Republican Party was created as an abolitionist party in 1854.
"As it is a new generation that has risen up since the declaration of independence, they know nothing of what political state of the country was at the time the pamphlet Common Sense appeared; and besides this there are but few of the old standards left, and none that I know of in this city."
The Democratic-Republicans only lasted about 30 yrs but according to Britannica they did refer to themselves as “republicans” for short.
But they were not the same as the 1857 Republicans of the GOP, which were founded in the upper Midwest.
I admit, that always confuses me.
I tend to think of Jefferson Republican-Democrats onward as Democrats...at some point, they stopped being the Republican-Democrats and became the Democrats.
Was that in 1830 or 1850, or some other time? Do you know?
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