QUEBEC-RESEARCH-L ArchivesArchiver > QUEBEC-RESEARCH > 2004-10 > 1096729152
Subject: Excerpt Of History
Date: Sat, 2 Oct 2004 10:59:12 EDT
January 21, 1793 Paris, France
"King Louis XVI of France was guillotined in his 39th year. Upon the
scaffold, he addressed the crowd, " I die innocent of all the crimes of which I am
charged. I forgive those who are guilty of my death, and I pray God that the
blood which you are about to shed may never be required of France."
Revolutionary authorities had assembled a large body of drummers whose drumming
obliterated the rest of the king's comments lest he sway the crowd to rescue him.
Louis was shoved into position under the knife. Some heard him cry, "May my
blood cement the happiness of France." Then the blade fell.
Louis and his Queen, Marie Antoinette, had nearly escaped the
revolutionaries two years earlier, but when Louis stuck his head out of his carriage
window, a postmaster recognized the king by comparing his face to the king's
profile on a coin. Just then, the wheel of the carriage struck the side of a
bridge, the frightened horses reared and broke their harnesses. Before repairs
could be completed, a mob captured the king.
Louis and Marie's marriage had remained unconsummated for seven years. Louis
had an anatomical defect, phimosis, which, until it was corrected by
surgery, made him impotent."