Journal Write What is a revolution? What conditions in a society often lead to revolution?
Feudalism – a political system in which nobles are granted the use of lands that legally belong to their king, in exchange for their loyalty, military service, and protection of the people who live on the land.
The Enlightenment Thinkers such as Rousseau and Voltaire wrote about government. Said that governments should have the consent of the governed and people should have freedoms. The people began using words like equality, liberty, and democracy.
The Old Regime The Old Regime – title of French government, system of feudalism. Old Regime divided into three classes, or estates. Two of the estates had privileges. – First Estate: Clergy of the Roman Catholic Church, owned 10% of land in France, paid little in taxes. – Second Estate: Nobles, though only 2% of population, owned 20% of land and paid almost no taxes. – Third Estate – 90% of French population.
The Third Estate 90% of French Population Bourgeoisie - merchants, artisans. Often very wealthy. Influenced by Enlightenment ideas. Urban workers. Peasants – 80% of French population, paid half their income in taxes. Third Estate desperate for change in France.
The Road to Revolution Enlightenment Ideas. Crop Failures. American Revolution. Weak leadership of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. French government went bankrupt, Louis XVI forced to call meeting of Estates General to reform the tax system.
The Estates-General Assembly of representatives of all three estates. Estates-General had not met in 175 years. Every estate had one vote, the two privileged estates could always out vote the third estate. The members of the Third Estate demanded change. Declared themselves the National Assembly – governing body of France, end of absolute monarchy. Third Estate delegates locked out of meeting hall. Broke down door to tennis court to hold meeting. – Tennis Court Oath: Third Estate delegates would stay in tennis court until they had drawn up a new constitution.
Storming the Bastille Louis XVI tried to make peace with Third Estate, but didn’t trust French soldiers, so he stationed Swiss mercenaries in Paris. Rumors spread through Paris that king had hired foreign soldiers to massacre French citizens. Mob attacked prison in Paris (the Bastille), freed the prisoners, stole gunpowder, destroyed prison. Symbolic act of revolution – citizens had torn down king’s prison.
The Great Fear Great Fear – wave of senseless panic in which peasants rioted against nobles after hearing rumors that nobles had hired outlaws to terrorize them.
Women’s March 6,000 Parisian women rioted over price of bread. Anger turned against king and queen – grabbed knives and axes and marched to Versailles. Broke into palace, killed two guards, demanded king and queen come to Paris. Three hours later royal family left Versailles, never to return again.
Reform in France The National Assembly adopted The Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen Olympe de Gourges: Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Citizen Assembly confiscated church lands. Mixed reaction from French people. June 1791: Louis tried to flee France.
Changes Made by the National Assembly Disbanded the National Assembly. Created limited monarchy with an elected Legislative Assembly. The Legislative Assembly had the power to create French law, although the King and his ministers could still enforce it.
War with Austria and Prussia The events of the revolution concerned other European nations. Austria and Prussia proposed that France put Louis back on the throne. In response the Legislative Assembly declared war on Austria in April 1792. Prussia joined Austria later. The Parisians invaded the Tuileries, where Louis and his Family were staying, and imprisoned the queen and her children in a tower.
Factions of the Legislative Assembly Radicals Moderates Conservatives Extremes – Émigrés – Sans-culottes
Outcomes of the War with Austria and Prussia September Massacres. Call for election of new legislature. National Convention established. France defeated the Austrians and the Prussians. Under the national convention the monarchy was abolished. France was declared a republic.
Execution of the King King Louis was considered another citizen and prisoner. Louis was tried and found guilty of treason. He was guillotined on January 21, 1793.
The Reign of Terror The Committee of Public Safety. Maximilien Robespierre attempted to rid France of all ‘enemies of the revolution.’ Marie Antoinette was one of the victims. People turned on Robespierre and he was beheaded in 1794. A third constitution was drafted in 1795, and created a moderate two- house legislature known as the Directory. The general commanding their army was Napoleon Bonaparte.
‘The People’s Friend’ Jean Paul Marat – Newspaper The People’s Friend – Became a martyr of the French Revolution Charlotte Cordet
Conclusion Causes – Old Regime Estates System – Spread of Enlightenment ideas – Crop failure (1780s) – Weak Leadership/Bankrupcy 1 st Stage(1789-1791): – Meeting of the Estates-General (1789) Tennis Court Oath – National Assembly (1789-1791) Storming of Bastille Women’s March – Legislative Assembly (1791-1792) War with Austria /Prussia 2 nd Stage (1792-1799): – National Convention (1792-1795) Reign of Terror (1793-1794) King and Queen Executed – The Directory (1795-1799) Napoleon as General