It took several months for the frimaire law to take effect because remote towns and villages, where rain and snow disrupted transport in the winter, did not get the legislation for weeks. Even when it did arrive, many representatives on mission ignored it because it restricted their freedom and some provincial revolutionary armies operated in defiance of it well into the early months of 1794 . Claude Javogues, one of the more colourful and violent representatives, had been in his native department of the Loire since September, imposing forced loans on the rich, arresting suspects and terrorising local administrators. He carried on as if nothing had happened, ignoring letters from Paris and even setting up a new revolutionary army until the Committee of Public Safety finally lost patience and recalled him in early February . Yet the fact that he, and several others like him, were pulled back to Paris, reflected the Committee of Public Safety’s growing control over the terror in the provinces. Controlling Paris was more difficult because in mid-December, shortly after the frimaire law was passed, a dispute erupted which threatened the Committee’s authority and threw a large question mark over the future of the terror.
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