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Overture to RevolutionThe 1787 Assembly of Notables and the Crisis of France's Old Regime$
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John Hardman

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199585779

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199585779.001.0001

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Delayed Opening of the Assembly

Delayed Opening of the Assembly

(p.91) 3 Delayed Opening of the Assembly
Overture to Revolution

John Hardman

Oxford University Press

The opening of the Assembly was delayed by a month which gave opponents time to concert action, whilst the death of Vergennes robbed Calonne of his only ministerial supporter. There was also an exchange of letters between Calonne and Necker about the status of the latter's published budget for 1781, the famous Compte rendu which was to prove Calonne's nemesis. Calonne's long speech to the Notables made two controversial points: 1. that there was a deficit in 1781 not a surplus as Necker had claimed. (If Calonne was right, Necker, the hero of many Notables, was a charlatan, if Necker was right Calonne was a robber.) 2. That the king had personally adopted Calonne's programme, leaving the Notables to discuss only how best to implement it. (In which case public opinion would consider that the Notables were stooges.)

Keywords:   Vergennes, Calonne, delay, Necker, Compte rendu, opening speeches, deficit

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