LEGENDRE, LOUIS (1752-1797), French revolutionist, was born at Versailles on the 22nd of May 1752. When the Revolution broke out, he kept a butcher's shop in Paris, in the rue des Boucheries St Germain. He was an ardent supporter of the ideas of the Revolution, a member of the Jacobin Club, and one of the founders of the club of the Cordeliers. In spite of the incorrectness of his diction, he was gifted with a genuine eloquence, and well knew how to carry the populace with him. He was a prominent actor in the taking of the Bastille (14th of July 1789), in the massacre of the Champ de Mars (July 1791), and in the attack on the Tuileries (loth of August 1792). Deputy from Paris to the Convention, he voted for the death of Louis XVI., and was sent on mission to Lyons (27th of February 1793) before the revolt of that town, and was on mission from August to October 1793 in Seine-Inferieure. He was a member of the Comile de S&rete Generale, and contributed to the downfall of the Girondists. When Danton was arrested, Legendre at first defended him, but was soon cowed and withdrew his defence. After the fall of Robespierre, Legendre took part in the reactionary movement, undertook the closing of the Jacobin Club, was elected president of the Convention, and helped to bring about the impeachment of J. B. Carrier, the perpetrator of the noyades of Nantes. He was subsequently elected a member of the Council of Ancients, and died on the 13th of December 1797.
See F. A. Aulard, Les Orateurs de la Legislative et de la Convention (2nd ed., Paris, 1906, 2 vols.) ; " Correspondance de Legendre " in the Revolution française (vol. xl., 1901).
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)