Tushar Jois AP European History Kinberg January 14, 2013
The Aristocracy The Middle Class (bourgeoisie) The Peasants and the Working Classes During this time period, a person’s or family’s social class and lifestyle was implied by the source of income (Chambers 683). A Social Class Hierarchy Click on a Social Class name to go to that section of the presentation… Nobles and Upper Gentry Upper level administrators Power dependent on population dynamic Power dependent on population dynamic Bankers, Merchants, Professionals Bankers, Merchants, Professionals Not a majority Believed themselves to be self made Believed themselves to be self made The Majority of the Population The Majority of the Population Peasants: tied to land Hungry for land, power Hungry for land, power Resistant to change Workers: tied to employers Meager Wages Inhumane Conditions
Return to Hierarchy Return to Hierarchy Included all nobles (with special formal titles – Lord/Lady/Sir etc.) and their blood relatives, along with the upper gentry (landowners) ◦ In the Low Countries and in the north: also the wealthy patrician families of the cities (jonkheers) Aristocracy on the decline because of threats to their privilege ◦ France: French Revolution (1789) abolished all hereditary titles, and the ones created by Napoleon were considered void (Smith) Members of French Parliament consider aristocrats as those who “consume without producing” (Richardson 4) Aristocracy still prevalent in upper-level governmental functions – diplomats, generals, advisors/councilmembers ◦ Were strongest in the least industrial areas = Russia, Eastern Europe Still stuck in the past – honor and chivalry still considered important (Sherman 87)
Return to Hierarchy Return to Hierarchy Centered in the least industrial places: the South and Eastern portions of Europe ◦ In addition, the most powerful aristocrats comprised less than 5% of a nation’s population Russia: three hundred seventy thousand aristocrats (1%) governing thirty-three million three hundred thousand serfs (90%) at the turn of the century (“Estimated”) ◦ The tsar of Russia used the aristocrats as a way of subjugating the peasant masses Most land was state-owned, but administered by nobles This gave the aristocratic class exceptional control over local affairs, making them autonomous over their own land and tyrants to their serfs (Chambers 683) Kingdom of the Two Sicilies (Kingdom of Naples): 87,000 (1%) aristocrats managing 5,221,800 (60%) manorial peasants (“Estimated”) ◦ After Napoleon was exiled, the aristocrats of Naples helped in reclaiming the lands for the original king As a result, their puppet king, the Bourbon Ferdinand IV, allowed them to be a part of administration (Pappas) A Russian noble court. Note the affluence in type of clothing. (Russian)
Return to Hierarchy Return to Hierarchy If the nobility composed a greater part of the population, the pattern was different ◦ In Poland, Spain, and Hungary, most nobles were poor Their indecisive position shifted constantly from supporting the government (usually for a title of some sort) or sympathizing with radicals and rebels The Magyars of Hungary ◦ Proud history as the founders and settlers of Hungary, with a long (and bloody) history (“Magyars”) ◦ Sought to the reinforce their influence through representative government and decentralization Cooperated with political/economic reformers Similar patterns in northern Italy and Belgium The most open-minded were the British aristocrats ◦ Proved willing to accept liberal programs in exchange for political power ◦ 1832-1867: 64/100 cabinet members were sons of nobles, and 80% of Parliament considered of nobles or their representatives The younger nobility were closely tied to the middle class, however (Chambers 683) (Magyar Noble)
Return to Hierarchy Return to Hierarchy The Junkers held the most influence in Prussia ◦ Powerful because of their unwavering position through times of change Crude by Europeans standards of elegancy, retaining a medieval-esque form of culture from the Middle Ages ◦ Proud tradition of fierce loyalty and service to their king and the realm Their actions and values, which were prevalent in Prussian society, were emulated by the common folk France is the only European nation where the old aristocracy was reduced to a minor role in politics due to the revolutions of 1830 ◦ However, the retained their former status in social life and local affairs All over Europe, the source of the aristocracy’s power was being put under question ◦ Lineage was once a matter state, but now it was only a private matter (Chambers 684) A typical Prussian Junker, outside his average home (Junker).
Return to Hierarchy Return to Hierarchy The most confident and emphatic class was the middle class ◦ The greatest of the bankers, industrialists, and merchants made up the top of the pecking order Office clerks, schoolteachers, and shopkeepers made up the bottom These two extremes formed the social division known as the bourgeoisie ◦ The most important part of the middle class: most merchants, upper bureaucrats, and professionals Professionals included doctors, lawyers, managers, engineers, and professors These peoples attempted to sever their ties to the aristocracy, opposed to their privilege and unearned wealth Saw themselves as the beacons for social welfare and change (Chambers 687) Their occupations tended to be based in cities, and as a result the middle class was an urban class ◦ Made up almost 25% of the taxpaying citizens of Paris in the 19 th Century In smaller cities, they formed around 15% of the general population (Smith) A bourgeoisie with his attendants (Bourgeoisie).
Return to Hierarchy Return to Hierarchy The middle classes did not necessarily make up a majority of the population, so their true power was in economics and in society ◦ The people who comprised the ranks of the middle class controlled much of the trade and commerce that took place within the urban centers of the time ◦ Their values and styles set the tone for the rest of society (aka the lower classes) The Big Idea: The middle class of this time period all believed that they were self-made (Chambers 688) ◦ They valued hard-work, judiciousness, resilience, and self- reliance They despised the aristocracy for their laziness and contempt for work (Smith) Because of the intermediate social position of this class, it was possible to fall out of it ◦ The middle class had a distinctive social style The Home contained ornately crafted furniture and colorful wall decorations Rise of the factory system allowed women of the time to purchase more dresses with ornamental frills and with different colors All middle class men work the same, plain garb – a symbol of unity (Chambers 687-688) A middle class woman. Note the ornamental frills of her gown (Woman).
Return to Hierarchy Return to Hierarchy More than seventy percent of all Europeans were still peasants ◦ They reflected the lower half of traditional society Their fates were intertwined with that of the aristocracy The most important social change of the 19 th century was the emancipation of peasants and serfs from manorial obligation ◦ Manorial Obligation included certain concessions given to the lord as rent, like labor on the lord’s land or payment to the lord for use for the mill These changes were set in motion with the French Revolution (August 4, 1789) and spread to the rest of Europe with the conquests of Napoleon and the later revolutions of 1848 ◦ However, this prevented peasants from accessing traditional means of protection against hardship No manor meant no common land to farm in case of harvest failure and famine and no common wood to forage for firewood ◦ Allowed peasants to enter the commercial market for the first time Peasant farmers started to produce food for surplus/commerce, not just subsistence for the family Utilized better machinery and cultivation techniques that allowed for maximum crop output (Chambers 684) Poorer peasants working in the field (Millet).
Return to Hierarchy Return to Hierarchy The peasants were the most tenacious social group, as they clung on to their old ways ◦ Opposed to reformers and change, unless it yielded them with immediate benefits ◦ Resented government control: taxes and military service They hungered for land and political power The government knew that the peasantry’s sheer size could be the deciding factor in revolutions and wars – the French Revolution, Spanish resistance, etc. (Chambers 684) Galician Slaughter: an example of the peasant violence that rocked Europe from 1820-1848 ◦ Centered around the city-sate of Krakow in the Austrian partition of Poland in 1864 They were set to lead an insurrection against the government, resulting in independence ◦ Instead of combating this violence directly, the Austrians gave information to the power-hungry peasants of the region In exchange for their fighting, the peasants were promised land and gold The insurrection ultimately failed as a result, but helped add to the kindling toward the revolutions of 1848 (Benarz) Polish peasants and Austrian troops in Galicia exchanging booty for money (Lewicki).
Return to Hierarchy Return to Hierarchy Fusion of the agrarian and industrial sectors was ongoing c. 1850 ◦ In Britain: the peasantry was eliminated due to enclosures reducing the peasants to free agent laborers ◦ In France: the peasants owned ≈30% of arable land, and gradually gaining more ◦ In Central Europe: Larger farms were consolidated, also reducing them to peasants In Germany: Freedom from feudal obligations included a fee to the nearby lord ◦ Meanwhile, in Russia… Landowners still held claims to unpaid labor and total control over their serfs This system was abolished circa 1860 to allow for administrative efficiency (Chambers 684 – 685)
Return to Hierarchy Return to Hierarchy The workers, a minority (even in Britain), were the most notable class of this time ◦ They indicated a new age, where the employer (who sets the wages) held control over the tasks done and the length of said tasks French workers had a special restriction, a passport known as a livret which recorded the past jobs of a person ◦ An entire family would have to be employed because wages were meager The workday was long and hard, with occupational hazards (machinery) and fines for the smallest error ◦ The only free of the working class were the artisans They were free from guild restrictions after 1848 (Chambers 685-686) Industrial Workers (Factory).
Return to Hierarchy Return to Hierarchy Workers were usually uneducated and too exhausted to concentrate energy on reform ◦ Anyway, after 1824, trade unions were banned everywhere but England Local originations did form for mutual help, though Confraternities (France)/Friendly Societies (Britain) ◦ Skilled workers that met in secret with elaborate rituals Its members would help one another in times of illness or disaster Cooperatives began to spring up ◦ Attempted to increase the workers’ control over their lives Labor movements (i.e. strikes) usually petered out after some weeks due to the defenselessness of the working class ◦ In Britain, many trade unions formed because of this condition Origination against their common enemy was the only way to defeat it ◦ Newspapers, pamphlets calling workers to action became more prevalent during this time (1830s) Common themes: natural rights, pride in work, social justice ◦ The millions of employed rallied behind radical reformers as hope for the future (Chambers 686-687) The banner of a local friendly society (Tuthill).
An informative website about 19 th Century Paris An informative website about 19 th Century Paris More information on friendly societies More information on friendly societies The Role of Women in Urban Society The Role of Women in Urban Society A Pictorial view of English Society A Pictorial view of English Society All Links Used Under a Fair-Use Licence
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