Date of Award


Degree Type

Master's Essay - Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




When the French Revolution began in 1789, it was, for the most part, welcomed by the people of Britain, for it was perceived as a possible means to weakening a habitual enemy and perhaps even effecting an English-style Glorious Revolution.1 Throughout the eighteenth century, France and Britain had been enemies in an economic, political, and religious sense.2 The newspaper, the London Times, came out for the French uprising, but began to balk in 1789, as did many Englishmen, when the Third Estate in France presumed to represent the nation and pushed such ideas as a separate legislative body and an ending to the privileges of aristocracy.3 The English upper class was. surprised by such occurrences but had not yet developed a fear of the French Revolution.4 They, like the Prime Minister, William Pitt, saw the internal fracturing of France and the decline of the Bourbons as desirable, but they worried about a propensity towards anarchy.5