When dangers external and internal began to threaten the newborn liberty of France, the women not only encouraged their husbands, brothers, and lovers bravely to defend their country, but they exerted themselves to the utmost to contribute toward its defense. After the example of the women of our own country during the war of American independence, many thousands of zealous female patriots laid their trinkets, their pin-money, or the fruits of their economy upon the altar of the country. Many women, inspired with enthusiastic patriotism and love of liberty, renounced the character of their sex, and taking their posts among the combatants for freedom, gained the laurels of victory, or died the death of heroines in the field of blood.
But the heads of ruling parties forgot the proofs of patriotism and courage which the French women had displayed from the beginning of the Revolution, as readily as they did the voluntary sacrifices of the king, the nobles, and the clergy. The fair sex was never treated in so cruel and shameful a manner, nor did it ever display such great and at the same time such odious qualities as during the Reign of Terror, which began
August 10, 1790, and in the course of the succeeding year spread its unexampled horrors over all France During these days of blood, incited by party leaders, the rabble learned to trample upon justice, innocence, humanity, decency; to pay respect neither to rank, nor sex, nor age.
One of the first and most shocking atrocities of these days was the massacre of the Princess Lamballe, with the horrid indignities that were afterwards offered to her body, and the carrying of her head on a pike through the streets, and even to the Temple, for the express purpose of exhibiting it to the view of the queen and royal family.
Reference: Woman: Her Position, Influence and Achievement Throughout the Civilized World. Designed and Arranged by William C. King. Published in 1900 by The King-Richardson Co. Copyright 1903 The King-Richardson Co.