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work from being reprinted in less awkward volumes and on paper which will bring out clearly the numerous and highly interesting illustrations. It would then easily take its place in our libraries among the very best general histories of the French Revolution.
Much more concise than the volumes of Jaurès is M. Aulard's “Political History of the Revolution ” (1901), written by one who has given years of attention to the sources of the period and who naturally treats the whole republican movement with the utmost sympathy. This compact and admirable book should be speedily translated into English.
Among the more special accounts of the work of the Revolution may be noted the later volumes of Gomel's Histoire Financière, covering the period of the Constituent and Legislative Assemblies (4 vols.) and ultimately to include the Convention. The sterling merits of this work have already been emphasized. It is by no means a narrowly technical treatise, but takes into consideration all the bearings of the financial policy of the assemblies. This may be supplemented in some respects by Sagnac, La Législation Civile de la Révolution Française, 1789-1804 (1898). This is devoted largely to the land question and to the laws affecting the family relations, marriages, inheritance, etc. Lastly, the new edition of Levasseur's
History of the Working Classes and Industry from 1789 to 1870” (1903–1904) gives much attention to the assignats and other important topics.
Besides the general and special treatments of the Revolution from the religious, educational, and economic or social standpoint, two other classes of contributions are becoming more and more numerous as the demand for accurate and intensive historical investigation develops. One is the monograph which confines itself to the events of a single noteworthy day or some one factor in the general situation, the other class is the local history which exhibits the origin and course of the revolutionary movement in a small district. We have books on the Fourteenth of July, the Tenth of August, the theatres, the press, the émigrés, the buildings occupied at different times by the parliamentary assemblies, the "grand' peur " in Dauphiné. Ferdinand-Dreyfus has written on public relief under the Legislative Assembly and the Convention; Seligman on the administration of justice, 1789-1792 (1901); Lenôtre on the guillotine' and arrests during the Revolution.
1 I think that some years ago M. Sorel remarked that he considered Louis Blanc's Histoire de la Révolution Française (Paris, 12 vols., 1847-1862) on the whole the best general account of the Revolution. That of Jaurès is far superior in all respects except in his omission of exact citations, which would have encumbered his text with foot-notes which few of those readers to whom he wished especially to appeal would have appreciated.
2 See page 538, note 2. The attitude of the modern sympathizer with the Revolution is well expressed by M. Seligman as follows: “Les souffrances des victimes innocentes (of the Revolutionary tribunals] furent la rançon des progrès qui nous furent légués. Il nous appartient, à nous qui les voyons de loin, de réconcilier ces grands ancêtres dans une pieuse et filiale reconnaissance"whatever that may mean. From an address at Liége, June, 1905, reported in La Révolution Française, October, 1905 (XLIX. 361).
3 See page 542, note 7.
4 There is a remarkable chronological table of the edicts, decrees, ordonnances, laws, etc., issued in regard to economic matters (I. Ixxxi), which gives a vivid impression of the range and activity of the Revolutionary legislation compared with that of the earlier period.
Of the local histories recently published, that of Bruneau, Les Débuts de la Rézolution dans les Départements du Cher et de l'Indre, 1789-1791 (1902), is a study of the old province of Berry. By means of investigations such as this one can form a very exact idea of the collapse of the old government, the advent of the new provisional substitute, the progress and effects of the sale of the public lands, the issuing of the assignats. The third part of Bussière's “ Historical Studies on the Revolution in Périgord " has appeared (1903). There is now a long list of similar works, some of them in several volumes. A well-chosen group of them should be in every library that aims to keep pace with the literature of the Revolution ; for it is in such works, as has already been said, that one may discover the true secret of the Revolution in its influence upon the life of the common lot.?
Before bringing to a close this rather arid but perhaps useful review of the vast range and compass of activity in the field of Revolutionary history, it is natural to ask whether in view of all that has been done and all that is planned in the way of special investigation it is possible even to conceive of an adequate general review of the Revolution such as used to be undertaken with a light heart. As early as 1797 a writer on the causes and results of the Revolution declared that it was “a complete change of manners, customs, conditions, and possessions ”.? Such a proposition could only be proved or disproved, as we now clearly see, after a. detailed examination of the manners, customs, conditions, and property-holding not only of the Revolution but of the Ancien Régime. Material for such an examination is only beginning to be collected, and it seems therefore impossible to determine for a long time to come what exactly were the effects of the Revolutionary changes.
* In his interesting studies, Paris Révolutionnaire : Vieilles Maisons, Vieux Papiers (2 vols., 1904).
* The appearance of local histories and of other monographs can be conveniently followed in La Révolution Française, and in the admirable Répertoire Méthodique de l'Histoire Moderne et Contemporaine, edited by Brière and Caron, which, beginning with an account of the output of the year 1898, has been appearing annually since 1900.
3 Lezay-Marnézia, Des Causes de la Révolution et de ses Résultats (Paris, 1797), 6, quoted by Chassin, Le Génie de la Révolution, vii.
But however incomplete and provisional our histories of the Revolution may be until the whole range of changes is examined and the results of the examination digested, they will hereafter be free from the influence of four fallacies which have wrought much evil in the past: first, the long-cherished belief that the Revolution began on May 5, 1789; second, that it culminated in the Reign of Terror; third, that it was confined mainly to the city of Paris; and lastly, that its history can be written from that older form of historical fiction, personal memoirs. All these convictions are being surrendered by careful scholars. The Reign of Terror no longer claims the attention of many investigators; and the provinces, as has been abundantly shown, are vying with Paris in bringing to light material relating to local history and in producing monographs and elaborate histories of all parts of the ancient kingdom. Memoirs are regarded now with rooted suspicion, and preference is always given to strictly contemporaneous reports and proceedings. The fatal date 1789 continues, however, to bar the way to a complete grasp of the unity of the revolutionary movement. Histories still close or commence with that year, although it was assuredly in 1786, when Calonne threw up his hands and summoned the Notables, that the Revolution as an unbroken political movement took its beginning.
It is high time that we had a general account of the Revolution regarded simply and solely in its most fundamental aspects as a reformation, social, political, and economic. This is what Chassin evidently had in mind when he began his never-completed " Genius of the Revolution”. He dreamed of an "histoire positive ”, in which the personal, anecdotal, transient, and fantastic should give way to the permanent achievements of the time. By the term “Revolution" Chassin understood not the upbubbling of disimprisoned anarchy, but quite prosaically the way in which the reformers transformed their ideas into acts: how they substituted for a polity based upon privilege, the régime of equality; for despotism, a free state; for divine right, the sovereignty of the people; for favor, justice. "Assuredly, as Chassin ventured to think, "cette histoire ne gagnerait-elle pas en certitude ce qu' au premier aspect elle semblerait perdre en intérêt ? ” But no apologies are necessary.
This ideal, it seems to the present writer, is most nearly realized by M. Gomel. Although he claims to deal only with the financial
* Le Génie de la Révolution (1864-1865), introduction. Only the first part, on the cahiers of 1789, in two volumes, ever appeared.
? See above, page 542, note 7, and page 544.
history, he really furnishes an admirable review of the whole reform movement beginning with the period of the Seven Years' War and coming down without a break through the administrations of Turgot, Necker, and the later contrôleurs to the National Assembly and the Convention. There is no break; the stream is perfectly continuous. Sagnac's "History of the Civil Legislation ",' while dealing with only a few subjects of reform, is in the same line, as is Levasseur's “ History of the Working Classes " and the little volume of essays on the Social Task of the Revolution”, which has a very suggestive introductory essay by Émile Faguet.
In short, we need a pragmatic history of the Revolution. We long to know just what was actually accomplished. But in order to learn what was done and so appreciate properly the place of the Revolution among the great transformations of history, it will be necessary to bring the history of France from 1789 to 1800 into organic relation not only with the Ancien Régime but with the developments throughout Western Europe of the half-century immediately preceding the assembling of the Estates General. The older writers tended to give preference in their study of the Ancien Régime to the spectacular abuses and the eccentricities of speculation, which may indeed serve to explain the attitude of some of the more fantastic terrorists, but which will never account for the abrupt and permanent betterment. This must remain a mystery to those who have not traced the more or less abortive reforms and the irresistible demands for improvement which lie back of the cahiers of 1789. The Revolution will some day be recognized as fundamentally the most decisive and general readjustment to meet new and altered conditions of which we have any record. To tell the story of this rebirth, not only in France but in Western Europe, by first following out with scrupulous care the process of gestation, is the aspiration which, it is safe to prophesy, will dominate the historiography of the future.
JAMES HARVEY ROBINSON. 1 See above, page 544. ? See above, page 542, note 5, and page 544. * See above, page 541, note 2.
DR. S. MILLINGTON MILLER AND THE MECKLENBURG
[In the exposure of Dr. Miller's interesting fabrication there have been two marked stages. In the period from the time of its publication to December 30, 1905, the leading part in the attack was taken by Mr. A. S. Salley, Jr., Secretary of the Historical Commission of South Carolina, who assailed it in the Columbia State of July 30, and in the pamphlet mentioned below. From December 30 on, in consequence of Dr. Miller's exhibition of his document on that day, the leading part naturally fell to Mr. Worthington C. Ford, Chief of the Division of Manuscripts in the Library of Congress. At the request of the managing editor, these two gentlemen have kindly furnished the Review with accounts of the first and second acts of the comedy respectively. The ancient question of the Mecklenburg Declaration, it is perhaps needless to say, remains where it stood before, except that Dr. Miller's efforts have resulted in awakening renewed interest in it and in eliciting some new bits of evidence. Our thanks are due to the editor of Collier's for permission to reproduce the original photograph first printed in their pages (plate 1., post)?; to Mr. Salley for plate 11.; to the authorities of the Public Record Office, Messrs. B. F. Stevens and Brown of London, and Mr. Alexander Graham of Charlotte, North Carolina, for plates III. and iv.-ED.]
I. On April 30, 1819, the Raleigh Register and North Carolina Gazette,? of Raleigh, North Carolina, published a set of resolutions that were alleged to have been passed in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, by a convention, on May 20, 1775, and that had been rewritten from memory by John McKnitt Alexander, terming them a “Declaration of Independence". A controversy over their genuineness was immediately started and has never ended. The latest attempt to prove them genuine was made by “S. Millington Miller, M.D." in an article on the Mecklenburg “Declaration " which he contributed to the issue of Collier's for July 1, 1905. It was an elaborate but vain attempt to deceive the public by a fac
We regret to find that the reduction in size has entailed some loss of clearness. 2 On file in the Library of Congress.
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