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1792 French National Convention election

1792 French National Convention election

← 1791 2 till 19 September 1792 1795 →

All 749 seats to the National Convention
  First party Second party Third party
  Portrait Lazare Carnot.jpg Robespierre.jpg Jacques Pierre Brissot de Warville.jpg
Leader Lazare Carnot Maximilien Robespierre Jacques Pierre Brissot
Party Marais Montagnard Girondin
Leader's seat Pas-de-Calais Seine Eure-et-Loir
Seats won 389 200 160
Popular vote 1,747,200 907,200 705,600
Percentage 51.9% 26.7% 21.4%

French National Convention, 1792.svg
Composition of the National Convention

President of the Assembly before election

Pierre-Joseph Cambon

Subsequent President of the Convention

Philippe Rühl

The French National Convention election elected the National Convention.

The election of the deputies was held in early September and lasted three weeks;[1] they were the first to be held under universal male suffrage; royalist and Girondin candidates were boycotted.[2][3] To be an elector a citizen had to over 21, resident one year in his department and not a domestic servant. An elector could stand as a candidate in any constituency. To be a delegate or a deputy an elector had to be over 25. If at the first ballot no candidate received an absolute majority of votes cast, there was to be a second ballot at which only the top two candidates of the first could compete.[4]

According to Malcolm Crook "Evidence of orchestrated attempts to intimidate rivals is not hard to find.[5][6]

An absolute majority of the male deputies elected belonged to the Marais party, a political faction of vague but largely moderate policies. The Montagnards or Jacobins received 200 seats and the republican, though more moderate Girondin faction 160 seats. According to Ian Davidson these are not hard numerical facts.[7] The election preceded the fall of the Gironde as a political faction, mainly because of the political and social unrest following the war started by the Girondist-dominated government in the spring of 1792.

Turnout was only 10%.


Party Votes % Seats
  Maraisards 1,747,200 51.9% 389
  Montagnards 907,200 26.7% 200
  Girondins 705,600 21.4% 160
Total ca. 3,360,000[8] 100% 749


  1. ^ Assemblée électorale de Paris 2 septembre, p. XI
  2. ^ Assemblée électorale de Paris 2 septembre, p. XVI
  3. ^ Elections in the French Revolution: An Apprenticeship in Democracy, 1789-1799 by Malcolm Crook, p.94-96
  4. ^ A. Cole & P. Cambell (1989) French electoral systems & elections since 1789, p. 38-39
  5. ^ Elections in the French Revolution: An Apprenticeship in Democracy, 1789-1799 by Malcolm Crook, p.94-96
  6. ^ Birth of Electoral Democracy by Melvin Edelstein, p. 266, 273
  7. ^ The French Revolution: From Enlightenment to Tyranny, p. xiv
  8. ^ Roger Dupuy (2005). La République jacobine. Terreur, guerre et gouvernement révolutionnaire (1792-1794). Le Seuil. pp. 35–40.