July 14, 2014

Le quatorze juillet

Happy Bastille Day! France today is celebrating the most famous and irrelevant jail-break in history.
On this day in 1789, the medieval fortress and prison in Paris known as the Bastille in the center of the city was stormed by angry citizens. The prison contained only seven inmates at the time but, its fall was the flashpoint of the French Revolution. The Revolution ended 10 years later when Napoleon took over. Hey, they tried.
(After Napoleon abdicated, it was another 30 or so years of monarchy before that was overthrown in the revolution of 1848. Again, they tried. Another Napoleon (III) popped in for 18 years as emperor.)
You can't really blame the French for getting all jazzed about the Storming of the Bastille. At that moment in time, they were on top of the world. And the "four forgers, two 'lunatics' and one 'deviant' aristocrat" were eternally grateful.

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