Kingdom of France (1791–92)

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Kingdom of France
Royaume de France (French)
State Coat of arms
State Coat of arms
La Nation, la Loi, le Roi
"The Nation, the Law, the King"
Marche Henri IV (1590–1830)
"March of Henry IV"
French Kingdom before its demise
Capital Paris
Languages French
Religion Constitutional Church
Government Constitutional monarchy
King of the French
 •  1791–1792 Louis XVI
Legislature Legislative Assembly
 •  Constitution adopted 3 September 1791
 •  Storming of the Tuileries 10 August 1792
 •  Republic proclaimed 21 September 1792
Currency Assignat
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Kingdom of France
French First Republic
Constitutional Cabinet of Louis XVI
Flag of France (1790–1794).svg
Cabinet of Kingdom of France
Antoine-François Callet - Luís XVI.jpg
Date formed 3 September 1791 (1791-09-03)
Date dissolved 21 September 1792 (1792-09-21)
People and organisations
Head of state King Louis XVI
Head of government King Louis XVI
No. of ministers 5
Ministers removed
Total no. of ministers 24
Member party Independents, Feuillants, Moderate Jacobins (1792)
Status in legislature Legislative Assembly
Opposition party Jacobins
Opposition leader Georges Couthon, Pierre Victurnien Vergniaud and others
Election(s) 1791
Legislature term(s) 6 September 1791 – 2 September 1792
Successor Government of the National Convention

The Kingdom of France as remnant of the preceding absolute Kingdom of France, was a constitutional monarchy that governed France from 3 September 1791 until 21 September 1792, when this constitutional monarchy was succeeded by the First Republic.

On 3 September 1791, the National Constituent Assembly forced king Louis XVI to accept the French Constitution of 1791, thus turning the absolute monarchy into a constitutional monarchy.

After the 10 August 1792 Storming of the Tuileries Palace, the Legislative Assembly on 11 August 1792 suspended this constitutional monarchy.[1] The freshly elected National Convention abolished the monarchy on 21 September 1792, ending 203 years of consecutive Bourbon rule over France.


France had been undergoing a revolution in its government and social orders. A National Assembly declared itself into being and promulgated their intention to provide France with a fair and liberal constitution.[2] Louis XVI moved to Paris in October of that year but grew to detest Paris and organised an escape plot in 1791, the escape plot known as the Flight to Varennes ultimately failed to materialise and destroyed any positive public opinion for the monarchy.[3] Louis XVI's brothers-in-exile in Coblenz rallied for an invasion of France. Austria and Prussia responded to the royal brothers' cries and released the Declaration of Pillnitz in August, the declaration stated that Prussia and Austria wished to restore Louis XVI to absolute power but would only attempt to do so with the assistance of the other European powers.[4]


Louis XVI was forced to adopt the Constitution of 1791 by the National Assembly in the aftermath of his Flight to Varennes to the Austrian Netherlands,[5] the Constitution of 1791 which established the Kingdom of the French was revolutionary in its content. It abolished the nobility of France and created all men equal before the law. Louis XVI had the ability to veto legislation that he did not approve of as the legislation still needed Royal Assent to come into force.[6]


Louis XVI reluctantly declared war on Austria on 20 April 1792 bowing to the assembly's wishes. Prussia allied with Austria and therefore France was at war with Prussia as well,[7] the Brunswick Manifesto of August 1792 issued by the Duke of Brunswick, Commander of the Austrian and Prussian military brought about the Storming of the Tuileries on 10 August 1792. The manifesto explicitly threatened the people of Paris with dire repercussions if they in any way harmed Louis XVI or his family,[8] the Legislative Assembly was inundated with requests for the monarchy's demise. The President of the National Assembly responded by suspending the monarchy on 11 August pending the outcome of elections for another assembly,[1] the newly elected National Convention elected under universal male suffrage abolished the monarchy on 21 September 1792. The convention proclaimed a republic.[9]

Government composition[edit]

Portfolio Minister Took office Left office Party
King of the French   Louis XVI 6 September 1791 2 September 1792 Independent
Minister of Finances   Louis Hardouin Tarbé 29 May 1791 24 March 1792 Feuillant
  Étienne Clavière 24 March 1792 13 June 1792 Girondin
  Antoine Duranton 13 June 1792 18 June 1792 Girondin
  Jules de Beaulieu 18 June 1792 29 July 1792 Independent
  René Delaville-Leroulx 29 July 1792 10 August 1792 Independent
Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs   Claude Antoine de Valdec de Lessart 29 November 1791 15 March 1792 Feuillant
  Charles-François Dumouriez 15 March 1792 13 June 1792 Girondin
  Pierre Paul de Méredieu 13 June 1792 18 June 1792 Independent
  Victor de La Garde de Chambonas 18 June 1792 23 July 1792 Girondin
  François Joseph de Gratet 23 July 1792 1 August 1792 Feuillant
Secretary of State for War   Louis de Narbonne-Lara 7 December 1791 9 March 1792 Feuillant
  Pierre Marie de Grave 9 March 1792 9 May 1792 Feuillant
  Joseph Servan 9 May 1792 13 June 1792 Girondin
  Charles-François Dumouriez 13 June 1792 18 June 1792 Girondin
  Pierre August Lajard 18 June 1792 23 July 1792 Feuillant
  Charles d'Abancour 23 July 1792 10 August 1792 Feuillant
Secretary of State of the Navy   Claude Antoine de Valdec 18 September 1791 7 October 1791 Feuillant
  Bertrand de Molleville 7 October 1791 16 March 1792 Feuillant
  Jean de Lacoste 16 March 1792 21 July 1792 Independent
  François Joseph de Gratet 21 July 1792 10 August 1792 Feuillant
Keeper of the Seals   François Duport-Dutertre 21 November 1790 23 March 1792 Feuillant
  Jean-Marie Roland 16 March 1792 14 April 1792 Girondin
  Antoine Duranton 14 April 1792 4 July 1792 Girondin
  Étienne Dejoly 4 July 1792 10 August 1792 Feuillant

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Fraser, 454
  2. ^ Hibbert, 63
  3. ^ Hibbert, 130
  4. ^ Hibbert, 143
  5. ^ Jones, 426
  6. ^ The Constitution of 1791 Archived 17 December 2011 at the Wayback Machine.
  7. ^ Hibbert, 145
  8. ^ Jones, 459
  9. ^ Jones, 462


  • Fraser, Antonia: "Marie Antoinette: the Journey", Orion Books, London, 2001, ISBN 978-0-7538-1305-8
  • Hibbert, Christopher: "The French Revolution", Penguin Books, Great Britain, 1982, ISBN 978-0-14-004945-9
  • Jones, Colin: "The Great Nation: France from Louis XV to Napoleon", Columbia University Press, New York, 2002, ISBN 0-231-12882-7