WAIT, WAIT, DON’T GUILLOTINE ME! Question 8
Test – and refresh – your knowledge of the French Revolution and the Reign of Terror with this simple multiple-choice quiz!
8. The national motto of France includes which of these terms?
A. Joie de Vivre
Answers: B. Liberté, C. Fraternité, and E. Equalité
The motto of the French Republic is "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity" (Liberté, Equalité, Fraternité).
The notions of liberty, equality, and fraternity were linked at the end of the 17th century, and the linkage became widespread during the Age of Enlightenment. At the time of the French Revolution, "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity" was one of the many mottoes in use, but was by no means the only contender as a motto for the revolutionaries.
Robespierre advocated in a speech on the organization of the National Guards (in December 1790) that the words "The French People" and "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity" be written on uniforms and flags, but his proposal was rejected.
From 1793 onwards, Parisians painted the following words – “Unity, indivisibility of the Republic; liberty, equality or death" – on the façades of their houses. This was imitated by the inhabitants of other cities, but they were soon asked to erase “or death” as it was too closely associated with the Reign of Terror.
Although it was often called into question, the familiar motto finally established itself under the Third Republic, and was written into the 1958 Constitution.
March 8 – 24, 2019