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Database: Newspaper Stands and Printing Presses

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One of the most spectacular aspects of commerce during the revolutionary period was the boom in printing driven by the explosion in the number of publications. Before 1789, censorship tightly controlled the production of literary works, including periodicals. With the Revolution, however, the printing industry blossomed. In June 1789, only 5 newspapers were on sale. By December of the same year, the figure had risen to 130. Among the most important papers of the Revolution were Camille Desmoulins' "Le Vieux Cordelier," Jacques Brissot's Girondist "Le Patriotte Français," Jacques-René Hébert's "Le Père Duchesne," and Jean-Paul Marat's "L'Ami du Peuple." These papers reached a huge number of Parisians, even those who were unfamiliar with reading, since it was not uncommon to find individuals who read articles aloud in the middle of the street to persuade others.

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