Who was Jean-Paul Rabaut de Saint-Étienne?
Known as the principal author of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, which still gathers around it in the world advocates of freedom of conscience, this pastor, son of the great pastor Paul Rabaut, was forced to die on the scaffold. Champion of the rights of the Protestants, he had obtained from King Louis XVI, with the support of La Fayette, the right of Protestants to have a civil status. It was a big step towards the Revocation of the Edict of Fontainebleau, which made off-the-law during more than a century the Protestants of France and caused the death or exile of the vast majority of advocates of the Reformation. Shortly after, member of the Constituent Assembly, directed by him for a short time, he was able to continue the work he had undertaken. Opposed to any form of repression, he was an opponent of king's death, and the Terror put an end tragically to its action. The last work he had begun to write, “Précis de l’Histoire de la Révolution Française,” remained largely unfinished, was published in Lausanne in 1822, introduced by a notice of his friend François-Antoine de Boissy d'Anglas describing the life, personality and ideas of Rabaut-Saint-Étienne. This is the document that we invite you to discover on our site. Spelling, grammar and layout are strictly in accordance with the original: