Having lost his first employment - with a procureur - through dishonesty, he obtained a clerkship in the Paris octroi in 1789, but was dismissed for abandoning his post when the Parisians burned the octroi barriers on the night of the L2th-13th of July 1789.
Indifference and satiety spread speedily; the bourgeoisie forsook the reformers directly they had recourse to violence (February 1358), and the Parisians became hostile when Etienne Marcel complicated his revolutionary work by intrigues with Navarre, releasing from prison the grandson of Louis X., the Headstrong, an ambitious, fine-spoken courter of popularity, covetous of the royal crown.
As the country districts could yield nothing more, it became necessary to demand money from the Parisians and from the citizens of the various towns, and to search out and furbish up old disused edictsedicts as to measures and scales of pricesat the very moment when the luxury and corruption of the parvenus was insulting the poverty and suffering of the people, and exasperating all those officials who took their functions seriously.
Some twenty thousand Parisians signed a petition expressing sympathy with Louis.
They could count on the populace, because work was still scarce, food was still dear, and a multi- progress tude of Parisians knew not where to find bread.