Flight to Varennes

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apprehension of Louis XVI
the apprehension of Louis XVI at Varennes

Although the King reluctantly accepted the Constitution of 1791, he could not accept all the reforms, particularly those which hurt the Church. For this religious man, the Civil Constitution of the Clergy was the last straw. He decided to leave the country.

On June 20, 1791, the King and his family set out for the border in a carriage. The King was disguised as a steward and his son was wearing a dress. At the border village of Varennes, he was recognized and eventually apprehended. Word of his attempted flight spread quickly. Crowds lined the street to jeer at him when he was returned to Paris. The King remarked, "There is no longer a King in France."

Part of Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité: The French Revolution Exhibit

The French Revolution

The French Revolution Primary Sources

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