The French Revolution brought fourth many new ideas and concepts rarely before imaginable. While the country would end the revolution in somewhat of the same spot it began, with an overarching monarch, there were some key subtle differences from the old regime. While still a dictator, Napoleon Bonaparte was, unlike Louie the XVI, chosen by the people to rule France. Due to an influx of enlightenment ideas and “radical” thinking during the time, the thought that the king was ordained by god to hold his position of power was much less believable and commonly accepted then it had been years before. Taxes, one of the original instigators of the revolution, were now split much more evenly. The new system put in place taxed people based on personal …show more content…
Law could no longer be changed or reinvented on the spot by members of government for their own benefit. Now, it could only prohibit actions which were hurtful to society. These new concepts brought fourth during the revolution would greatly influence not just France, but the entirety of Europe and its direction in the decades to come. Perhaps the most important of these new concepts was Nationalism which encompassed the ideas of pride in one’s nation, fair, nonbiased law, comradery, and a still skewed, but, better version of equality. Nationalism would also bring fourth the concept of legitimate violence which was essentially the thought that war was ok and murder was not. This important concept would be the driving force behind the Napoleonic Wars to come. While the concept of nationalism was most definitely progressive, highly influential, and constructed of good intentions and values it did not always play out as such in soldiers and citizens daily lives during the revolution. Far too often nationalism turned away from its pure ideals and instead lead to prejudice in all types of different people, which was not its conceptual …show more content…
These feeling of superiority can also clearly be seen in civilians of the time like Friedrich Ludwig Burk. Burk was “a prosperous farmer, from Wiesbaden, the capital of the western German principality of Nassau-Usingen” (B & L, 101) who wrote on and off about the Napoleonic Wars and his situation due to the wars in his diary. During the years of 1813 and 1814 Burk apathetically billets many Russian soldiers who are now allied with his country. In his diary Burk writes “November the 2nd. We had to billet Russian dragoons, an evil type of human from the Turkish border, previously a Turk himself” (B & L, 115). This quote depicts Burks prejudice towards the Russian soldiers he is billeting when he refers to them as “an evil type of human” solely based on nationality and assumptions. As if this wasn’t enough to drive my point home Burk also states “Even if the Russians come as friends and allies to Germany, we should still take all our guns and stop these barbarians” (B & L, 116). First, the fact that he is willing to suggest using violence to stop friendly Russian soldiers who are helping his nation out shows how deep his animosity lies. Secondly, referring to the Russian’s as barbarians suggests that he believes himself to be above them by definition of the word barbarian which is used to talk about a primitive and undeveloped human. Two of
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The French Revolution was a time of great social, political and economic tumult in the closing years of the Eighteenth Century. The motivators pushing French citizenry toward revolution are varied in scope and origin. They range from immediate economic woes to an antiquarian class structure. Modern historians still debate the value of the changes that the revolution brought to modern society. The middle class made gains that would never be rescinded, but do revolutions always end in tyranny? In the years before the revolution citizens were rigidly constrained by the estates of the realm. These social strata had been in place since the medieval ages. The people were divided into three groups; clergy, nobility and everyone else. The clergy
Just about any country that one can name has some history of civil unrest, class issues, rioting in the streets, and outright warfare. These patterns of behavior are common denominators for most civilization in the world. The names, faces, and places may change, but the motivations are generally the same, because of the need for change and the willingness to do whatever is necessary to achieve it. In contrast to the United States, which was in the process of freeing itself from British colonial rule, France was working to free itself from royal absolutism. This period is historically known as the French Revolution. Many scholars do not agree on the chronology of the French Revolution; some scholars suggest that the Revolution took place between 1789 to 1799 while others feel that it did not end until Napoleon lost power in 1815. To better understand the history of the French Revolution it is necessary to discuss the causes, major events, significant figures, and the outcomes associated with these political developments. Without this uprising, that changed the face of the entire country and influenced local political life in many countries in Europe, in all likelihood the France we know today would never have existed.
Before the revolution France was ruled under the Ancien Regime system, meaning the country and all its people were under the reign of an absolute monarch. This was a tradition that had been upheld through the years and the Royal family had enjoyed a life funded by the people of France, the royal family’s lifestyle unaffected by the situation outside their palace. The Palace, Versailles, was built by king Louis XIV and the expenses for building this “village” was very high, and in later years the cost for its upkeep would play a significant role in Frances financial difficulties. In order for these difficulties to be overcome France needed a tax reform. The government had a very high tax rate on the poorest of their people, the Third Estate, and they were still not getting enough money to get out of their
First, one primary factor of the French Revolution was the Enlightenment. Specifically, the Enlightenment was an age of “scientific and philosophical thought” in the 18th century (An Analysis 1). The ideas that came from this age were natural rights, the sovereignty of citizens, and equal rights for everybody under the law along with questioning the divine right of the king (An Analysis 1). The Enlightenment was one primary factor because it provided ideas that the commoners wanted as it placed them at a fair and basic level in comparison to the other classes alongside questioning the validity of the monarchy. Another example was it inspired the American Revolution, where the colonists fought and won the right to govern themselves from England (An Analysis 1). This proved that a winning a
The French Revolution was a period of social and political turmoil in France from 1789 to 1799 that greatly affected modern and French history. It marked the decline of powerful monarchies and the rise of democracy, individual rights and nationalism. This revolution came with many consequences because of the strive for power and wealth, but also had many influential leaders attempting to initiate change in the French government and the economy. In 1789 the people of France dismissed King Louis XVI of his title, took apart his monarchy and executed him, his wife Marie Antoinette and thousands of nobles. The French set up a new system of government with specific revolutionary ideals, including liberty, equality and fraternity. This was a
The events leading up to the French Revolution were many things, but the biggest and most recognized by historians is the fact that the French government was bankrupt due to funding the American Revolution. This lead for the king, King Louis XVI to raise taxes just like any country would. The only problem with what he did, was he was not taxing everyone. He was just taxing the poor, the people with the least amount of money. This left more wealth for the clergy and the
Pre-Revolution France Up until 1789, France was an absolute monarchy ruled by a King who claimed his total power to govern to be God-given. In 1775, that divine King became 19-year-old Louis XVI of the House of Bourbon. The new French King was initially happily welcomed to the throne by his subjects, as he “wanted to do well by his people, including the poor, if only he could determine what it meant”; but he was not able to do so due to circumstances that “made him more of a prisoner than a prince, and far removed from his subjects.” Indeed, Louis XVI inherited one of the world’s most powerful and wealthy dynasties, but he also governed a nation that was choked by mounting debt, rampant fiscal mismanagement, and a highly inequitable system
The French revolution which is also referred to as the Revolution of 1789 was a period characterized by both social and political upheaval that span close to a decade in France. It was during this period that the country’s political landscape was redesigned and it involved
The development of the French Revolution was greatly influenced by the philosophies of the French Enlightenment period. Interestingly, disparate to the English and American Revolutions, the French Revolution did not evolve in a linear fashion. Instead, it progressed in a series of conflicting phases, each of which could be considered almost as a revolution in itself. Political theorists – such as Montesquieu, Rousseau and Voltaire – were sources of inspiration for key revolutionaries throughout the Revolution’s three major phases. As the revolutionists occupying the leading roles changed, the principles of the Revolution’s former phase were abandoned in favour of another policy, essentially antithetical to the previous one. Ultimately, in shifting between various Enlightenment philosophers, France was able to subject its government to massive structural change - from being an absolute monarchy (prior to the Revolution), to a constitutional monarchy (1791-1792), then a republic (1792-1804), and finally a dictatorship (under Napoleon Bonaparte).
The French Revolution directly affected the nineteenth century through the creation of many ideologies, one important one being nationalism. Nationalism is a very controversial ideology because of the many diverse approaches towards its true definition. A broad definition of nationalism could be perceived as a strong devotion towards the culture and identity of a nation. As well as the idea that nations will benefit more from acting as an independent nation opposed to multiple states working together as a collective. Its emergence completely changed the political map of Europe and resulted in the birth of many new nations. There are many different views towards the true reason for the emergence of Nationalism in Europe. Many historians believe the emergence can be credited to the French Revolution and later the continuation of ideas under Napoleon Bonaparte. While others believe the Industrial Revolution held more importance for the widespread arrival of nationalism. It seems better to encompass both and argue that the emergence of nationalism in Europe was caused by the French Revolution, Napoleon Bonaparte’s rule, and the Industrial Revolution.
During the eighteenth century there was one central political cause for the French Revolution. King Louis XVI was a weak ruler who endured a lavish lifestyle. He disregarded the people’s needs, leaving much of the French population in discontent. Prior to the revolution the form of government was Absolute monarchy led by Louis XVI. The problem with absolute monarchy was that people were denied basic rights, and a say in government because the divine right theory was abused. The King ruled by the divine right of theory which
Liberté, égalité, fraternité was the cry of freedom that countless people used to propel them through, and to the end of the French Revolution. This long period of social, political and economic change in France lasted 10 years, starting in 1798 and ended with Napoleon Bonaparte. The French Revolution greatly affected all of Europe at the time and continues to represent the embodiment of revolution to this day. This constant struggle between the heavily taxed, burdened, and unrepresented third estate and those higher created an environment of monumental change for everyone. In the years leading up to the French Revolution, new beliefs and ideas were reaching every corner of Europe creating the thought that men should live free of oppression. However, in France the leader Louis XVI lead like a tyrant leaving the people impoverish and angry. Through the analysation of numerous circumstance present during the Ancien Régime, such as an inferior fiscal leadership, massive debt, and the forthcoming of new ideas during the Enlightened period, it can be concluded that the means for this revolution were justified as it is in our essence to revolt for a change.
Economics also played an important role in the French Revolution. In France there was an abundance of debt and taxation. The French monarchy managed their fiscal affairs by using an unequal system of taxation, borrowing money, or selling noble titles and other privileges. This led to a long running fiscal debt. France could not solely rely on tariffs to generate income. Although other countries had higher taxation rates, the burden on the common people was greater in France. Peasants and other third estates were taxed harshly which in good times was burdensome and in bad times it was devastating. Nobility and clergy were exempted from paying taxes. This left the peasants, wage earners, and the professional and business classes with the burden of taxes. This burden caused the unrest, which eventually led to the French Revolution.
Revolutions are a common occurrence throughout world history. With the amount of revolutions in history, there are those that get lost and those that are the most remembered or well known. One of the well known revolutions is the French Revolution which occurred in the years 1789 to 1799. Before the French Revolution, France was ruled by an absolute monarchy, this meaning that one ruler had the supreme authority and that said authority was not restricted by any written laws, legislature, or customs, a definition given by wikipedia.com and the feudal system, which was a system that said a peasant or worker would receive a piece of land in return for serving under a king, a definition given by vocabulary.com. Those who opposed the, then
The French Revolution began as an expression of rebellion against centuries of absolute rule in France. After an interim of experimental liberalism under the rule of Jacobins and Girondins and then the infamous reign of terror, the people of French were drawn to a man who promised them a return to stability, and honor through the expansion of empire. France and it’s people had long yearned for this sens eof honour, it had seemed, and could finally sens eit in a lasting rpesence under the rule of their prodigious, unbeatable general, Napoleon Bonaparte. He would soon take the reigns of civil government as well and become yet another Absolutist ruler, yet this