The Day of the Tiles (French : Journée des Tuiles) was an event that took place in the French town of Grenoble on 7 June in 1788. It was one of the first disturbances which preceded the French Revolution, and is credited by a few historians as its start.
French is a Romance language of the Indo-European family. It descended from the Vulgar Latin of the Roman Empire, as did all Romance languages. French evolved from Gallo-Romance, the spoken Latin in Gaul, and more specifically in Northern Gaul. Its closest relatives are the other langues d'oïl—languages historically spoken in northern France and in southern Belgium, which French (Francien) has largely supplanted. French was also influenced by native Celtic languages of Northern Roman Gaul like Gallia Belgica and by the (Germanic) Frankish language of the post-Roman Frankish invaders. Today, owing to France's past overseas expansion, there are numerous French-based creole languages, most notably Haitian Creole. A French-speaking person or nation may be referred to as Francophone in both English and French.
Grenoble is a city in southeastern France, at the foot of the French Alps where the river Drac joins the Isère. Located in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region, Grenoble is the capital of the department of Isère and is an important European scientific centre. The city advertises itself as the "Capital of the Alps", due to its size and its proximity to the mountains.
The French Revolution was a period of far-reaching social and political upheaval in France and its colonies beginning in 1789. The Revolution overthrew the monarchy, established a republic, catalyzed violent periods of political turmoil, and finally culminated in a dictatorship under Napoleon who brought many of its principles to areas he conquered in Western Europe and beyond. Inspired by liberal and radical ideas, the Revolution profoundly altered the course of modern history, triggering the global decline of absolute monarchies while replacing them with republics and liberal democracies. Through the Revolutionary Wars, it unleashed a wave of global conflicts that extended from the Caribbean to the Middle East. Historians widely regard the Revolution as one of the most important events in human history.
Grenoble was the scene of popular unrest due to financial hardship from the economic crises. The causes of the French Revolution affected all of France, but matters came to a head first in Grenoble.
The causes of the French Revolution can be attributed to several intertwining factors:
Unrest in the parlementary town was sparked by the attempts of Cardinal Étienne Charles de Loménie de Brienne, the Archbishop of Toulouse and Controller-General of Louis XVI, to abolish the Parlements to work around their refusal to enact a new tax to deal with France's unmanageable public debt.
Étienne Charles de Loménie de Brienne was a French churchman, politician and finance minister of Louis XVI.
A parlement, in the Ancien Régime of France, was a provincial appellate court. In 1789, France had 13 parlements, the most important of which was the Parlement of Paris. While the English word parliament derives from this French term, parlements were not legislative bodies. They consisted of a dozen or more appellate judges, or about 1,100 judges nationwide. They were the court of final appeal of the judicial system, and typically wielded much power over a wide range of subject matter, particularly taxation. Laws and edicts issued by the Crown were not official in their respective jurisdictions until the parlements gave their assent by publishing them. The members were aristocrats called nobles of the gown who had bought or inherited their offices, and were independent of the King.
Tensions that had been rising in urban populations, due to poor harvests and the high cost of bread, were exacerbated by the refusal of the privileged classes — the Church, and the aristocracy, who insisted on retaining the right to collect feudal and seignorial royalties from their peasants and landholders — to relinquish any of their fiscal privileges. This blocked the reforms of the king's minister Charles Alexandre de Calonne and the Assembly of Notables of January 1787. Added to this, Brienne, appointed as the king's Controller-General of Finance on 8 April 1787, was widely regarded as being a manager without experience or imagination.
Charles Alexandre de Calonne, titled Count of Hannonville in 1759, was a French statesman, best known for his involvement in the French Revolution.
An Assembly of Notables was a group of high-ranking nobles, ecclesiastics, and state functionaries convened by the King of France on extraordinary occasions to consult on matters of state. Assemblymen were prominent men, usually of the aristocracy, and included royal princes, peers, archbishops, high-ranking judges, and, in some cases, major town officials. The king would issue one or more reforming edicts after hearing their advice.
Shortly before 7 June 1788, in a large meeting at Grenoble those who attended the meeting decided to call together the old Estates of the province of Dauphiné. The government responded by sending troops to the area to put down the movement.
The Dauphiné or Dauphiné Viennois, formerly Dauphiny in English, is a former province in southeastern France, whose area roughly corresponded to that of the present departments of Isère, Drôme, and Hautes-Alpes. The Dauphiné was originally the County of Albon.
At roughly 10 in the morning of Saturday, 7 June, merchants closed down their shops as groups of 300 to 400 men and women formed, armed with stones, sticks, axes, bars.They rushed to the city gates to prevent the departure of judges who took part in the Grenoble meeting. Some rioters attempted to cross the Isère but faced a picket of 50 soldiers at the St. Lawrence bridge, while others headed to the Rue Neuve.
The Isère is a river in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region of southeastern France. Its source, a glacier known as the Sources de l'Isère, lies in the Vanoise National Park in the Graian Alps of Savoie, near the ski resort Val d'Isère on the border with Italy. An important left-bank tributary of the Rhône, the Isère merges with it a few kilometers north of Valence.
The cathedral’s bells were seized by French peasants at noon.The crowd swiftly grew, as the bells provoked the influx of neighbouring peasants to creep in the city, climbing the walls, using boats on the Isere and for some, pushing open the city gates.
Other insurgents boarded the ramparts and rushed to the hotel (L'hôtel de la Première présidence) the Duke of Clermont-Tonnerre was staying in at the time. The Duke had two elite regiments in Grenoble,the Regiment of the Royal Navy ( Régiment Royal-La-Marine) whose colonel was Marquis d'Ambert and the regiment of Austrasia (Régiment d'Austrasie) which was commanded by Colonel Count Chabord. The Royal Navy was the first to respond to the growing crowds and was given the order to quell the rioting without the use of arms. However, as the mob stormed the hotel entrance, the situation escalated. Soldiers sent to quell the disturbances forced the townspeople off the streets. Some sources say that the soldiers were sent to disperse parliamentarians who were attempting to assemble a parliament. During an attack, Royal Navy soldiers injured a 75-year-old man with a bayonet. At the sight of blood, the people became angry and started to tear up the streets. Townspeople climbed onto the roofs of buildings around the Jesuit College to hurl down a rain of roof-tiles on the soldiers in the streets below, hence the episode's name. Many soldiers took refuge in a building to shoot through the windows, while the crowd continued to rush inside and ravage everything.
A noncommissioned officer of the Royal Navy, commanding a patrol of four soldiers, gave the order to open fire into the mob. One civilian was killed and a boy of 12 wounded.To the east of the city, the Royal Navy soldiers were forced to open fire in order to protect the city's arsenal, fearing that the rioters would seize the weapons and ammunition. Meanwhile, Colonel Count Chabord began deploying the regiment of Austrasia to aid and relieve the Royal Navy soldiers.
Three of the city's four consultsgathered at the City Hall and attempted to reason with the crowd. However, their words were silenced amidst the clamour of the mob. Through great difficulty, the consults made their way through the crowds and eventually took refuge with the officers of the local garrison. Later that evening, the Duke of Clermont-Tonnerre withdrew his troops from the streets and hotel to prevent further violence from escalating the situation. The Duke managed to narrowly escape the hotel before the crowd completely looted the inside. With control of the hotel lost, the Royal Navy troops were ordered to return to their quarters.
At six, a crowd estimated at ten thousand people shouting "Long live the parliament" forced the judges to return to the Palace of the Parliament of Dauphiné (Palais du Parlement du Dauphiné) by flooding them with flowers.Throughout the night, carillons sounded triumphantly, a large bonfire crackled on Saint-André square surrounded by a crowd that danced and sang "Long live forever our parliament! May God preserve the King and the devil take Brienne and Lamoignon. "
On 10 June, the local commander attempted to appease the spirits of the crowd, with no success.Under the orders of exile pronounced against them by the King, the parliamentarians were forced to flee from Grenoble in the morning of 12 June. It wasn’t until the 14th of July that order was fully restored in the city by Marshal Vaux, who replaced the Duke of Clermont-Tonnerre.
The commander of the troops found the situation so alarming that he agreed to allow the meeting of the Estates to proceed, but not in the capital.A meeting was therefore arranged for the 21 July 1788 at the nearby village of Vizille. This meeting became known as the Assembly of Vizille.
In all, six outbreaks of rioting have been identified in the city on 7 June.
The event was commemorated by Alexandre Debelle's The Day of the Tiles, 13 July 1788, painted in 1889.He painted it a century after the event and got the date wrong, but it undoubtedly attempts to depict the events described by the title.
The meeting of the three Estates which had been agreed to took place at Vizille on 21 July. Several hundred people assembled, representing the three Estates, the nobility, the clergy and the middle class (the bourgeoisie), who were granted double representation. The meeting was led by a moderate reformist lawyer, Jean Joseph Mounier, and passed resolutions:
These demands were accepted by the King. Brienne left office during August 1788, but before doing so issued a decree convoking the Estates-General for 1 May 1789.It is not clear whether this decree was prompted by the demands from the Assembly of Vizille or the Day of the Tiles, because at least one source puts the date of the decree at 7 July 1788 after the Day of the Tiles, but two weeks before the Assembly of Vizille.
Since 1984, the Château de Vizille houses the Musée de la Révolution française.
Some historians, such as Jonathan Sperber,[ citation needed ] have used the Day of the Tiles to demonstrate the worsening situation in France in the buildup to the French Revolution of 1789. Others have even credited it with being the beginning of the revolution itself. The events as related by R. M. Johnston provide an apparently clear link between the Day of the Tiles, the Assembly of Vizille and the start of the revolution proper.
Antoine Pierre Joseph Marie Barnave was a French politician, and, together with Honoré Mirabeau, one of the most influential orators of the early part of the French Revolution. He is most notable for correspondence with Marie Antoinette in an attempt to set up a constitutional monarchy and for being one of the founding members of the Feuillants.
Jean Joseph Mounier was a French politician and judge.
The Storming of the Bastille occurred in Paris, France, on the afternoon of 14 July 1789.
The Romanche is a 78-kilometre (48 mi) long mountain river in southeastern France, right tributary of the Drac. Its source is in the northern part of the Massif des Écrins, Dauphiné Alps. It flows into the Drac in Champ-sur-Drac, south of Grenoble. The road from Grenoble to Briançon over the Col du Lautaret runs through the Romanche valley. There are several mountain and ski resorts in the valley, including Alpe d'Huez, La Grave and Les Deux Alpes.
Tonnerre is a commune in the Yonne department in Bourgogne-Franche-Comté in north-central France.
Jean-Pierre-André Amar or Jean-Baptiste-André Amar was a French political figure of the Revolution and Freemason.
Vizille is a commune in the Isère department in southeastern France.
The Assembly of Vizille or Estates General of Dauphiné was the result of a meeting of various representatives in Grenoble. Its purpose was to discuss the events of The Day Of The Tiles, one of the first revolts preceding the French Revolution.
Events from the year 1788 in France.
Claude-Nicolas Perier was assured an important place in French history when he opened his Château de Vizille near Grenoble to the famous meeting of the estates of the Province of Dauphiné heralding the coming of the French Revolution. He is notable also as the founder of the remarkable Perier family "bourgeois dynasty" that rose to economic and political influence and prominence in France during the 19th century. Claude's descendents became leading Paris bankers, regents of the Bank of France and owner-directors of Anzin, the major coal mining company of France in the Department of Nord. They were mayors of towns, prefects of departments and members of municipal tribunals and chambers of commerce. Many were elected representatives of departments to the Chamber of Deputies in Paris and appointed to France's Chamber of Peers. Most notably, Casimir Pierre Perier (1777-1832), the fourth of Claude's eight sons, became Prime Minister of France in 1831-32 during the Orleanist monarchy of Louis-Philippe I. Claude's grandson, Jean Casimir-Perier (1847-1907), was elected president of the Third Republic in 1894. Claude Perier was sufficiently wealthy before 1789 to be known as "Perier-Milord" in Grenoble and surroundings, but it was mainly during the decade of revolution 1789-99 that he created the financial underpinning of the Perier dynasty. His eight sons and two daughters would share his legacy of 5,800,000 francs.
Louis François, marquis de Monteynard was a French soldier and statesman.
Louis-Marie-Athanase de Loménie, comte de Brienne was a French officer and politician, who was guillotined during the French Revolution.
Noël Jourda de Vaux, comte de Vaux, seigneur d'Artiac was a French nobleman and General. He oversaw the conquest of the Corsican Republic in 1769. He was given command of land forces in the planned Franco-Spanish Invasion of Britain in 1779, but this was abandoned. He became a Marshal of France in 1783. He was the son of Jean Baptiste Jourda de Vaux, seigneur de Retournac and Marie Anne de Saint-Germain.
The Musée de la Révolution française is a departmental museum in the French town of Vizille, 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) south of Grenoble on the Route Napoléon. It is the only museum in the world dedicated to the French Revolution.
The Château de Vizille is a castle in the French town of Vizille near Grenoble. It is one of the most prestigious and important castles of the Dauphiné Region. Traditionally since the 14th century the Dauphiné was the homeland of the inheritor of the French throne. Today the Château de Vizille houses the Musée de la Révolution française.
François-Henri, comte de Virieu (1754-1793) was a French nobleman and a statesman of the French Revolution, at first a supporter of its efforts, later an agent of counter-revolution. His direct descendant is the journalist fr:François-Henri de Virieu.
The Régiment Royal–La Marine was an infantry regiment of the Kingdom of France, established in 1669. The regiment was directly involved in the Day of the Tiles, which took place in Grenoble on June 7, 1788. The last unit of the regiment was incorporated into the 23 demi-brigade on March 21, 1797 and the regiment ceased to exist.
The following is a timeline of the history of the city of Grenoble, France.