On This Day in Napoleonic History – 5 August 1794

5Napoleon hears about Robespierre’s death

After Robespierre had been arrested, he tried to kill himself but failed. The bullet shattered his lower jaw. On 28 July Robespierre was guillotined without trial in the Place de la Rรฉvolution, along with his brother Augustin, to whom Napoleon was very close, and other followers.

Napoleon had just returned from his brother Joseph’s wedding near Nice when he heard the news. ‘I was somewhat moved by the fate of the younger Robespierre, whom I liked and believed honest, but had he been my own brother, if he had aspired to tyranny, I would have stabbed him myself,’ he said.

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