[97], On 17 January 1793, the Assembly condemned Louis to death for "conspiracy against public liberty and general safety", by 361 to 288; another 72 members voted to execute him subject to a variety of delaying conditions. [75], Despite calls to replace the monarchy with a republic, Louis retained his position but was generally regarded with acute suspicion and forced to swear allegiance to the constitution. After about 800 years of rule by a king, the French staged a revolution in 1789 and proclaimed the first republic in 1792. The American Revolution was very similar to the many revolutions that have gone on in many countries that are fights for independence and democracy. [100], The crisis led to the creation on 6 April 1793 of the Committee of Public Safety, an executive committee accountable to the convention. [103], Meanwhile, a committee led by Robespierre's close ally Saint-Just was tasked with preparing a new Constitution. Dalton, Susan. [211], The French Revolution had a major impact on western history, by ending feudalism in France and creating a path for advances in individual freedoms throughout Europe. On 16 July 1789, two days after the Storming of the Bastille, John Frederick Sackville, serving as ambassador to France, reported to Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs Francis Osborne, 5th Duke of Leeds, "Thus, my Lord, the greatest revolution that we know anything of has been effected with, comparatively speaking if the magnitude of the event is considered the loss of very few lives. However, radicals led by Jacques Pierre Brissot prepared a petition demanding his deposition, and on 17 July, an immense crowd gathered in the Champ de Mars to sign. [76], The massacre badly damaged Lafayette's reputation; the authorities responded by closing radical clubs and newspapers, while their leaders went into exile or hiding, including Marat. The Revolution initiated a series of conflicts that began in 1792 and ended only with Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo in 1815. [140] Nevertheless, by 1799 the economy had been stabilised and important reforms made allowing steady expansion of French industry; many remained in place for much of the 19th century. Deputies argued over constitutional forms, while civil authority rapidly deteriorated. [107], The Reign of Terror began as a way to harness revolutionary fervour, but quickly degenerated into the settlement of personal grievances. Tallien, in August 1794, to explain the appearance of the regime of terror, said that it presumed a power that was at once "arbitrary", "absolute" and "endless": "The system of terror presupposes not only [] arbitrary and absolute power, but also endless power"[152]. [161], By February 1795, France had annexed the Austrian Netherlands, established their frontier on the left bank of the Rhine and replaced the Dutch Republic with the Batavian Republic, a satellite state. [136] Although these criticisms were certainly valid, it also faced internal unrest, a stagnating economy and an expensive war, while hampered by the impracticality of the constitution. [227], Two thirds of France was employed in agriculture, which was transformed by the Revolution. "[120], After the Convention authorised his arrest, he and his supporters took refuge in the Hotel de Ville, which was defended by elements of the National Guard. From its early stages, the Revolution therefore displayed signs of its radical nature; what remained unclear was the constitutional mechanism for turning intentions into practical applications. The revolutionaries had, at first, tolerated languages and dialects other than French. From this moment we may consider France as a free country, the King a very limited monarch, and the nobility as reduced to a level with the rest of the nation. [147] On 9 November 1799, the Coup of 18 Brumaire replaced the five Directors with the French Consulate, which consisted of three members, Bonaparte, Sieys, and Roger Ducos; most historians consider this the end point of the French Revolution.[148]. [209] It also abolished the highly inefficient system of tax farming, whereby private individuals would collect taxes for a hefty fee. The French Revolution didn't just take place in 1789. [222], Over the centuries, charitable foundations had been set up to fund hospitals, poor relief, and schools; when these were confiscated and sold off, the funding was not replaced, causing massive disruption to these support systems. [258] Most emigres settled in Montreal or Quebec City, although French nobleman Joseph-Genevive de Puisaye and a small group of Royalists settled lands north of York, modern day Toronto. Martinique remained under British occupation, while colonial landowners in Runion and the les Mascareignes repulsed the republicans. These policies were promoted by the atheist Hbert and opposed by the deist Robespierre, who denounced the campaign and replaced the Cult of Reason with the Cult of the Supreme Being. 1991. Having started in Versailles in May 1789, the French Revolution saw its first concrete act here in October of the same year with the departure of the king. [43] The breakdown of law and order and frequent attacks on aristocratic property led much of the nobility to flee abroad. By 1799, much of its property and institutions had been confiscated and its senior leaders dead or in exile. In May 1789, Louis summoned the Estates-General for the first time in over a hundred and fifty years. [274], Recent studies of the French colonies have largely abandoned the Jacobin-Marxist approach of classic studies such as C. L. R. James' The Black Jacobins (1938) and Aim Csaire's Toussaint Louverture: La Rvolution franaise et le problme colonial (1960). 1799 - Napoleon . "[112] [b], At the height of the Terror, the slightest hint of counter-revolutionary thought could place one under suspicion, and even its supporters were not immune. One of the most significant was the Jacobin club; originally a forum for general debate, by August 1790 it had over 150 members, split into different factions. [157], From 1701 to 1801, the population of Europe grew from 118 to 187million; combined with new mass production techniques, this allowed belligerents to support large armies, requiring the mobilisation of national resources. [78], Based on a motion proposed by Robespierre, existing deputies were barred from elections held in early September for the French Legislative Assembly. Camille Desmoulins asked his followers to wear green cockades on 12 July 1789. This led to the "Constitutional Act 1791", which split the Province into two separate colonies, each with its own electoral assembly, the predominantly French-speaking Lower Canada and predominantly English-speaking Upper Canada. September 20-21, 1792 A new assembly, the National Convention, meets, abolishes the monarchy, and establishes a republic. Hostile to the federalist system, the right to autonomy and the right to independence for the peoples of the empire, the Jacobins conceived power only concentrated in Paris. [163], Despite these concerns, the Directory never developed a realistic peace programme, fearing the destabilising effects of peace and the consequent demobilisation of hundreds of thousands of young men. They ransacked the palace, killing several guards. [66], When clergy were required to swear loyalty to the Civil Constitution in November 1790, it split the church between the 24% who complied, and the majority who refused. [18], Two ministers followed in quick succession before the Swiss banker Necker took over in July 1777. The French Revolution As French soldiers returned home from the Seven Years' War, they came home to a nearly bankrupt monarchical regime. While all wars are political to some degree, this period was remarkable for the emphasis placed on reshaping boundaries and the creation of entirely new European states. The French Revolution, which lasted from 1787-1799, Turned France upside down. [108], Fixed prices, death for 'hoarders' or 'profiteers', and confiscation of grain stocks by groups of armed workers meant that by early September, Paris was suffering acute food shortages. These revised symbols were used to instil in the public a new sense of tradition and reverence for the Enlightenment and the Republic.[183]. Its cultural influence was also under attack, with efforts made to strip civil life of religious elements such as Sundays, holy days, saints, prayers, rituals and ceremonies. [239]" Yet in Britain the majority, especially among the aristocracy, strongly opposed the French Revolution. Other units loyal to the Convention stormed the building that evening and detained Robespierre, who severely injured himself attempting suicide. Abolition was also proclaimed on Guyane. [189], Cockades were widely worn by revolutionaries beginning in 1789. The short answer is three, but the long answer is three proper revolutions and a number of near-revolutions. Among the most significant were Marat's L'Ami du peuple and Elyse Loustallot's Revolutions de Paris[fr]. [154] They remain little addressed by most historians. Napoleon as emperor set up a constitutional system (although he remained in full control), and the restored Bourbons were forced to go along with one. [145], It has been suggested the Directory did not collapse for economic or military reasons, but because by 1799, many 'preferred the uncertainties of authoritarian rule to the continuing ambiguities of parliamentary politics'. The song is the first example of the "European march" anthemic style, while the evocative melody and lyrics led to its widespread use as a song of revolution and incorporation into many pieces of classical and popular music. However, the British blockade virtually ended overseas and colonial trade, hurting the cities and their supply chains. Prelude to Revolt By the late 1780s, the French monarchy was on the brink of collapse. [74] The royal family left the palace in disguise on the night of 20 June 1791; late the next day, Louis was recognised as he passed through Varennes, arrested and taken back to Paris. Leading soldiers like Hoche, Pichegru and Carnot wielded significant political influence and often set policy; Campo Formio was approved by Bonaparte, not the Directory, which strongly objected to terms it considered too lenient. [258] The influx of religious migrants also reinvigorated the local Catholic Church, with exiled priests establishing a number of parishes throughout the Canadas.[258]. Relaxation of price controls and rampant inflation caused increasing unrest among the sans-culottes, but the improved military situation reduced fears the Republic was in danger. The assemblies refused to implement the decree and fighting broke out between the coloured population of Saint-Domingue and white colonists, each side recruiting slaves to their forces. [256] This made it increasingly difficult to justify the withholding of electoral rights, with the British Home Secretary William Grenville remarking it was difficult to deny "to so large a body of British Subjects, the benefits of the British Constitution". Deprived of political rights under the Ancien Rgime, the 1791 Constitution classed them as "passive" citizens, leading to demands for social and political equality for women and an end to male domination. In response to this measure, women in many areas began circulating anti-oath pamphlets and refused to attend masses held by priests who had sworn oaths of loyalty to the Republic. In an effort to mobilise popular support, the government ordered non-juring priests to swear the oath or be deported, dissolved the Constitutional Guard and replaced it with 20,000 fdrs; Louis agreed to disband the Guard, but vetoed the other two proposals, while Lafayette called on the Assembly to suppress the clubs. The socio-economic analysis of the revolution and focus on the experiences or ordinary people dominated French studies of the revolution after World War II. '[185], The guillotine remains "the principal symbol of the Terror in the French Revolution. The Girondists attempted to form a constitutional monarchy as was done in England, but ultimately lost out to the Jacobins , who abolished the Monarchy and established the First Republic. [36], In an attempt to prevent the Assembly from convening, Louis XVI ordered the Salle des tats closed down, claiming it needed to be prepared for a royal speech. [21], By 1788, total state debt had increased to an unprecedented 4.5 billion livres. [47], Assisted by Thomas Jefferson, then the minister to France, Lafayette prepared a draft constitution known as the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, which echoed some of the provisions of the Declaration of Independence. Rates varied widely from one region to another, often bore little or no relation to the amounts set out in official decrees, and were collected inconsistently. Was the French Revolution Successful or Unsuccessful? Fist fights broke out in the streets between the two factions of women. During this period, French citizens. The army recruited former slaves and eventually numbered 11,000, capturing Guadeloupe and other smaller islands. Emboldened by this, on 22 September the Convention replaced the monarchy with the French First Republic and introduced a new calendar, with 1792 becoming "Year One". [202], Counter-revolutionary women resisted what they saw as the increasing intrusion of the state into their lives. The Reign of Terror was the most violent phase of the French Revolution, a year-long period between the summers of 1793 and 1794. In return, the state assumed responsibilities such as paying the clergy and caring for the poor, the sick and the orphaned. Above all the antagonism helped stimulate and shape German nationalism. On 25 September 1792, Lasource, of Brissot's party, told the convention: "I fear the despotism of Paris, and I do not want those who dispose there of the opinion of the men they mislead to dominate the national convention and the whole France. One suggestion is that after a century of persecution, some French Protestants actively supported an anti-Catholic regime, a resentment fuelled by Enlightenment thinkers such as Voltaire. Jefferson became president in 1801, but was hostile to Napoleon as a dictator and emperor. Her publications emphasised that women and men are different, but this shouldn't prevent equality under the law. [70], On 14 July 1790, celebrations were held throughout France commemorating the fall of the Bastille, with participants swearing an oath of fidelity to 'the nation, the law and the king.' To change the laws, the king called a representative body known as the Estates General in 1788. In August, new conscription measures were passed and by May 1794 the French army had between 750,000 and 800,000 men. By the mid-nineteenth century, more scholarly histories appeared, written by specialists and based on original documents and a more critical assessment of contemporary accounts. In October, thirty bishops wrote a declaration denouncing the law, further fuelling opposition. The Revolution Controversy was a "pamphlet war" set off by the publication of A Discourse on the Love of Our Country, a speech given by Richard Price to the Revolution Society on 4 November 1789, supporting the French Revolution (as he had the American Revolution), and saying that patriotism actually centers around loving the people and principles of a nation, not its ruling class. Organised women were permanently shut out of the French Revolution after 30 October 1793. [72], The traditional force for preserving law and order was the army, which was increasingly divided between officers, who largely came from the nobility, and ordinary soldiers. Executive power was in the hands of five Directors, selected by the Council of Ancients from a list provided by the lower house, with a five-year mandate. [104] In mid-October, Marie Antoinette was found guilty of a long list of crimes and guillotined; two weeks later, the Girondist leaders arrested in June were also executed, along with Philippe galit. Although rumoured to hold many prisoners, the Bastille held only seven: four forgers, two noblemen held for "immoral behaviour", and a murder suspect. [212][2] The revolution represented the most significant challenge to political absolutism up to that point in history and spread democratic ideals throughout Europe and ultimately the world. [225], The Concordat of 1801 established the rules for a relationship between the Catholic Church and French State that lasted until it was abrogated by the French Third Republic on 11 December 1905.
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