“Robespierre, haunted by the ghosts of his female victims!”
The above image is meant to depict a scene in Victorien Sardou’s play, Robespierre. On a mission to rescue a victim from the Terror for the purposes of personal comfort, Robespierre gets hounded in the Concierge Prison and by the ghosts of his victims: Camille Desmoulins, Georges Danton, Madame Roland, and even Charlotte Corday all make cameos. Unfortunately for their republican sentiments, they also all bow to the ghost of Queen Marie-Antoinette, implying that they really did have monarchist sentiments all along and that Robespierre’s bloodhounds were right on the money with their accusations. (I mean, I’m just sayin’.)
There’s also some implicit misogyny, with Robespierre’s displays of fright and guilt being described as “womanly,” because only women get frightened of vengeful ghosts who are upset you decapitated them. Manly men like Danton would laugh it off. There’s actually a lot going on here and none of it is necessarily “good.”
The play was later novelized and the prose-version of the scene is under the cut. See for yourself!