Sunday, July 14, 2013

Bastille Day 1789

2 July 1789

The Bastille - Paris

A prisoner cried from his window.

"Ils tuent les prisonniers."

The guards subdued the inmate and the incarcerated Marquis de Sade was transferred to the insane asylum at Charenton. His words were a spark.

14 July 1789.

A wine wagon overturned on the Rue de La Roquette.

The wine flooded the gutter. The people drank their full. The Bastille loomed in the near distance. The prison symbolized the power of the ancien regime. Fortified by alcohol the mob stormed the Bastille.

Nearly 100 attackers were slain in the assault before the deluge flooded through the gates to massacre nine soldiers and free seven prisoners; four counterfeiters, two madmen and a perverse nobleman, the Comte de Solages, on charges of incest.

The Comte, 32 years a prisoner, returned to his homeland a stranger. He died in poverty and sleeps in anonymity, while the Marquis de Sade lives in our memory.

A bas la Bastille.

A bas l'ancien regime.

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