A counter-revolution can be positive or negative in its consequences; depending, in part, on the beneficent or pernicious character of the revolution that gets reversed, and the nature of those affected. For example, the transitory success of Agis and Cleomenes of ancient Sparta in restoring the constitution of Lycurgus was considered by Plutarch to be counter-revolutionary in a positive sense. During the French Revolution the Jacobins saw the Counter-revolution in the Vendée as distinctly negative, whilst it was strongly supported by the exiled Royalists, the Catholic Church, and the people of the provinces.
In some ways, the supporters of Jacobitism may be placed in this category. The Jacobites were supporters of the Stuart house's claim to the English throne since 1688. The Jacobites survive to this day in their support for the Stuart family's claim to the English throne.
The word "counter-revolutionary" originally referred to thinkers who opposed themselves to the 1789 French Revolution, such as Joseph de Maistre, Louis de Bonald or, later, Charles Maurras, the founder of the Action française monarchist movement. More recently, it has been used in France to describe political movements that reject the legacy of the 1789 Revolution, which historian René Rémond has referred to as légitimistes. Thus, monarchist supporters of the Ancien Régime following the French Revolution were counter-revolutionaries, for example supporters of the Revolt in the Vendée and of the monarchies that put down the various Revolutions of 1848. The royalist legitimist counter-revolutionary French movement survives to this day, albeit marginally. It was active during the purported "Révolution nationale" enacted by Vichy France, though, which has been considered by René Rémond not as a fascist regime but as a counter-revolutionary regime, whose motto was Travail, Famille, Patrie ("Work, Family, Fatherland"), which replaced the Republican motto Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité.
After the French Revolution, anti-clerical policies and the execution of King Louis XVI led to the Revolt in the Vendee. This counter-revolution produced what is debated to be the first modern genocide. Monarchists and Catholics took up arms against the revolutionaries' French Republic in 1793 after the government asked that 300,000 Vendeans be conscripted into the Republican military. The Vendeans would also rise up against Napoleon's attempt to conscript them in 1815.
In Italy, after the conquer of the Napoleon's army in the late 18th century, there was a counter-revolution in all the French client republics. The most well-known was the Sanfedismo, reactionary movement led by the cardinal Fabrizio Ruffo, which overthrew the Parthenopean Republic and allowed the Bourbon dynasty to return to the throne of the Kingdom of Naples. A resurgence of the phenomenon happened during the Napoleon's second Italian campaign in the early 19th century. Another example of counter-revolution was the peasants rebellion in Southern Italy after the national unification, fomented by the Bourbon government in exile and the Papal States. The revolt, labelled as brigandage, resulted in a bloody civil war that lasted almost ten years.