La Marseillaise

Something for the weekend.  In line with the Our Oldest Ally post earlier this week, the la marseillaise scene from Casablanca.

10 Responses to La Marseillaise

  1. How many were slaughtered and martyred by people singing this song?

  2. Donald R. McClarey says:

    No doubt far fewer French Catholics than died in wars fostered by French kings often for dubious reasons. The heroic revolt in the Vende was far in the past by WWII, and de Gaulle, a serious Catholic, and other French Catholics fully embraced La Marseillaise which had been banned by the Vichy regime. De Gaulle sang the song at the liberation of Paris in 1944. The Republican regime of the Terror was an evil regime. The Vichy regime that the Free French forces fought against was likewise an evil regime. The wheel of history turns and old symbols can become attached to new causes.

  3. “No doubt far fewer French Catholics than died in wars fostered by French kings often for dubious reasons. ”

    Such as the American War of Independence?

    I don’t mean to be too snarky, but there is a deep paradox in the American Republic’s dependence upon the French Monarchy.

    The sentimental revolutionary spirit unleashed by the French Revolution has also done untold damage to the world, even to this day. Brief but regular acknowledgment of its victims might be warranted.

  4. Donald R. McClarey says:

    Monarchies can commit evil just as republics can. I do not regard revolution against tyrannical governments to be a sin, no matter what the tyrannical government calls itself. The idea that Catholic monarchy is some sort of ideal form of government is amply refuted by history. Napoleon was a tyrant, but so was the Sun King. Poor Louis XVI, excellent family man, good Catholic, hapless and feckless monarch, was living proof of the limitations of hereditary monarchy. The Altar and Throne combo has no charms for me.

  5. It’s one of the ironies of history that the French monarchy and Tsarist Russia fell to revolutions during the reign of basically well intentioned (if ineffective) rulers. And that while many reasonable people could have wished to see those regimes reformed or abolished, it was the very worst people available who took the opportunity to take power.

  6. Donald R. McClarey says:

    Quite right. There were decent elements in both revolutions: Lafayette in the French Revolution and Kerensky in the Russian Revolution that deposed the Tsar. Unfortunately they proved singularly ineffective in the internecine struggles that ended in Napoleon and in Stalin. America was very fortunate indeed in the Founding Fathers.

  7. Bret Ramsey says:

    I know one brave group of soldiers that fought the people who began singing that terrible song…

  8. Tito Edwards says:

    I’d have to respectfully disagree with Donald on this one.

    But the Sun King did not systematically kill frenchmen such as the Committee of Public Safety did. I hope you were just making generalizations and not making “moral equivalency” charges between the Sun King and the anti-christ that was Napolean.

    I’m not a monarchist nor am I a proponent of the Bourban line, but I would like to see the French Republic less hostile to the faith and make some reperations to the Church. Granted there was the concordant between Napolean and the Church, but it would be nice to see the Fleur-de-lis replace the tri-color to represent Catholic France (not necessarily the Bourbons).

  9. Donald R. McClarey says:

    The comparison actually Tito was between the Sun King and Napoleon. In their indifference to liberty and their faith in authoritarian rule I find little to choose between them. Napoleon actually modeled his policy towards the papacy on the Gallicanism of the Sun King. The Declaration of the Clergy of France of 1682 definitely has a Napoleonic ring to it.

    “Kings of France had the right to assemble church councils in their dominions.
    Kings of France had the right to make laws and regulations touching ecclesiastical matters.
    The Pope required the king’s consent to send papal legates into France.
    Those legates required the king’s consent to exercise their power within France.
    Bishops, even when commanded by the Pope, could not go out of the kingdom without the king’s consent.
    Royal officers could not be excommunicated for any act performed in the discharge of their official duties.
    The Pope could not authorize the alienation of landed church estates in France, or the diminishing of any foundations.
    Papal Bulls and Letters required the Pareatis of the king or his officers before they took effect within France.
    The Pope could not issue dispensations “to the prejudice of the laudable customs and statutes” of the French cathedral Churches.
    It was lawful to appeal from the Pope to a future council or to have recourse to the “appeal as from an abuse” (“appel comme d’abus”) against acts of the ecclesiastical power. ”

    The “Eldest Daughter of the Church” has been in rebellion for a very long time indeed.

  10. Tito Edwards says:

    I knew there had to be more than just a disagreement. That makes more sense. Again I like the democratic structure of France over an absolutist rule.

    My only point was the many killed during the French Revolution.

    The French still don’t get it right after so many centuries in my opinion.

    Thanks for the document, I’m a history buff so this is certainly enlightening.

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