Homework Notes
The Constitution of the Year 111 1795
-The Thermidorians wanted a new constitution that would guarantee the main features of the Revolution of 1789
Eg the abolition of the privilege, freedom of individuals and control of local and national affairs by an elected assembly and elected officials
*Wanted to ensure that a dictatorship like that of the CPS, would be impossible in the future and that it would be impossible in the future for the return of the monarchy or to popular sovereignty on the sans culotte model
-Main features of the constitution:
*All males over 21 who paid taxation were allowed to vote in the primary assemblies to choose electors
*Real power, was however exercised by the electors who actually chose the deputies.
–Electors had to pay taxes equivalent to 150-200 days labour. (This was high that the numbers of electors had fallen from 50,000 in 1790-2 to 30,000 in 1795
*Electors were therefore the very rich, those who had suffered from the Revolution in 1793-4
*To prevent a dictatorship arsing, the Thermidorians rigidly separated the legislature from the executive -The Legislature
*It was divided into two chambers:
1. Council of Five Hundred: all of whom had to be over the age of 30. Thus Council would initiate legislation and then would pass it on to a Council of Ancients
2. The Council of Ancients: 250 men over 40, who would approve or object to bills but could introduce or change them. There was no property qualification for the councillors of either chambers
Elections were to be held every year, when a 1/3 of the members retiredThe Executive;
-Was meant to be Directory of Five
*Chosen by Ancients from a list drawn by Five Hundred
-The 5 Directors would hold office for 5 years
*1 chosen by the lot had to retire each year
-Not allowed to be members of either Council and powers were limited
-Could NOT initate laws, veto laws, declare war or control the treasury
-YET still had authority
*In charge…