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In response to the economic and political crisis in France, Louis XVI decided to call a meeting of the Three Estates to seek advice and, hopefully, assuage.

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Presentation on theme: "In response to the economic and political crisis in France, Louis XVI decided to call a meeting of the Three Estates to seek advice and, hopefully, assuage."— Presentation transcript:

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2 In response to the economic and political crisis in France, Louis XVI decided to call a meeting of the Three Estates to seek advice and, hopefully, assuage some of the concerns of the people. Who can identify the Three Estates? Estate 1: Upper Clergy Estate 2: Nobility Estate 3: Everyone else (peasants, paid laborers, and the bourgeoisie)

3 At the Estates General Meeting the Third Estate began to push for major changes to the voting system, including voting by head.

4 At the Estates General Meeting the Third Estate formed a new representative assembly “for the people” (rather than for the estates) which they called the National Assembly.

5 Screw this! I’m locking the Third Estate out and we are voting by estate. Stupid peasants! Stupid workers! Stupid bourgeoisie! I don’t have to listen to them! I’m King!

6 I. The Estates General Meeting – May & June 1789 A. Louis XVI called a meeting to discuss the financial crisis B. 3rd Estate wanted to change the voting system to allow for voting by head rather than by order (by estates) 1. formed the National Assembly to set up a representative government “for the people” not composed of the Estates like the Estates General 2. eventually locked out of the meeting in June

7 Despite being locked out of the Estates General, the National Assembly decided to meet anyway, and so they barricaded themselves inside a nearby tennis court and vowed to remain until they had created a new constitution for the French people.

8 I don’t like this at all! I need to get some of my people inside that meeting… So, Louis XVI urged the nobles and the clergy to join the National Assembly, and some did. But, some of those members of the 1 st and 2 nd Estate actually supported the Assembly. Fearing a coup d'état Louis put the military on high alert and ordered them to prevent the Assembly from meeting, but he was unsuccessful, and on July 9 th was forced to accept the authority of the Assembly.

9 II. The Tennis Court Oath – June 20, 1789 A. Despite being locked out, the new National Assembly met in a nearby tennis court and pledged to continue to meet until they wrote a new constitution for the French people B. Louis XVI got nervous 1. urged nobles and clergy to join the National Assembly; some did, and some of those who did began to support the Assembly over Louis XVI 2. put troops on alert and tried to have them prevent the Assembly from meeting, but they failed C. On July 9, Louis XVI was forced to acknowledge the authority of the National Assembly

10 Following several weeks of general rebellion in Paris and attempts by the royal guard to crack down on these protestors, a group of protestors decided to attack a mainly empty old prison (The Bastille) which was housing the guard’s ammunition, including 30,000 pounds of gunpowder.

11 As the rebels attacked the prison (which only housed seven inmates: four forgers, two “lunatics”, and one “deviant aristocrat”), the Royal Guard fired at the crowd and 98 of the attackers were killed; nevertheless, the prisoners were liberated and the Bastille was taken.

12 As news of the Storming of the Bastille spread, the French peasants began to revolt against the Nobles

13 The prisoners were insignificant, but the medieval prison itself was a symbol of the monarchy…its fall marked the flash point of the French Revolution!

14 III. Storming of The Bastille – July 14, 1789 A. Angry mob stormed old prison looking for gunpowder 1. Royal Guards opened fire on the mob – 98 die 2. crowd captured the Bastille – 7 prisoners freed B. News of the revolt spread – peasants revolted against nobles C. Event symbolized the beginning of the French Revolution

15 Meanwhile, the National Assembly had been working hard to create a document which guaranteed the freedoms, rights, and equality of all French people (except, of course, women & slaves). That document was the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen.

16 IV. Declaration of the Rights of Man – August 27, 1789 A. Revolutionary ideals adopted by the National Assembly B. Reflected ideas of freedom and equality for all French people (except women and slaves)

17 Though the revolution was in full force (Storming of the Bastille, Declaration of the Rights of Man, etc.), many of the French peasants were still starving.

18 So, on October 5 th, around 6,000 women took up arms and marched to Versailles to demand bread.

19 When they arrived, they invaded the palace, killed guards and nobles, and eventually reached the Queen’s bedroom. Contrary to the painting, she and her family had already escaped and barricaded themselves in the King’s bedroom.

20 As the crowd became more restless and agitated, they began to demand the queen appear and address them. Marie Antoinette stepped out onto the balcony with her two children to address the crowd. The crowd, armed with muskets, demanded that the children be sent inside, and they were. The queen stood stoically facing the crowd for around 10 minutes. Though the crowd had settled, they still demanded that the royal family depart for Paris and deal with the political situation.

21 Louis XVI, fearing for his family’s safety and believing that he could meet with the National Assembly and ease the tensions in France and end the Revolution, made the decision to return to Paris.

22 V. March on Versailles – October 5, 1789 A women marched from Paris to Versailles for bread B. Women invaded the palace – killed guards and nobles C. Marie Antoinette came to the balcony and calmed the crowd D. Louis XVI was scared – returned to Paris to meet with the National Assembly hoping to ease the tension


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