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French Revolution 12

  • Date Submitted: 03/14/2011 04:21 PM
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Anthony Soto

The French Revolution began in May, 1789 and ended approximately in 1799.   Although France faced some hard economic times, it was one of the richest and most powerful nations of Europe.   Between 1789 and 1802, France was torn by a revolution which drastically changed the government, administration, military and culture of the nation. It also started Europe into a series of wars. France went from a largely feudal state under a monarch to a republic which executed the king. Then it went to an empire under Napoleon Bonaparte.
Louis XVI, his ministers, and the widespread French nobility had become very unpopular because peasants and the upper class were burdened with extremely high taxes which support wealthy aristocrats and their extravagant lifestyles. The Aristocrats were confronted by merchants, tradesmen and successful farmers who allied with upset peasants, common workers and some philosophers. As the revolution went on, the power slowly went from the monarchy to a more represented political bodies like legislative bodies. But soon they had major conflicts that ended in more bloodshed.
The first year of the French Revolution began when the “Third Estate” deputies of the Estates General declared themselves a National Assembly.   They discussed seizing sovereignty from the King while the citizens of Paris rebelled against the king’s control.   They also stormed the Bastille in search of arms.   The “Third Estate” proclaimed the Tennis Court Oath in June.   The Oath was a pledge signed by 576 out of the 577 members from the Third Estate who were locked out of a meeting of the Estates-General on 20 June 1789 in a tennis court. The oath was “not to separate, and to reassemble wherever circumstances require, until the constitution of the kingdom is established" (Wikipedia).   Other events that followed were the passage of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen in August, and an epic march on Versailles that forced the...


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