French Revolution Essay: Causes and Effects

17/11/15 9:36 AM

Majority of historians commonly concur that the “French Revolution” was a turning point event that transformed the entire European continent irreversibly. Although, the causes of the “French Revolution” are hard to identify, however the significant ones are rooted on the past data that exists, a reasonably forceful case could be made concerning any number of elements.

Depiction of the storming of the Bastille, Paris – the event that triggered the French Revolution

The Storming of the Bastille in July 1789 is widely regarded as the most iconic event of the Revolution.

Generally speaking, the majority of major wars that took place in the 40th years bringing about the Revolution, and France took part, to some level, in the majority of them. The “Seven Years’ War” in Europe and the “American Revolution” all over the ocean had profound effects on the French and showed the Western world an unpredictable future that the French could not deny. Besides, inciting the French public, the time of war background deeply impacted the French Government. In addition, the cost of undertaking the war, supporting the allies, and the maintenance of the French troops rapidly exhausted the French banks because of the royal lavishness. Lastly, according to secularized Enlightenment idea of King Louis XVI who had assumed absolute powers in his hand was responsible to the culmination of the catastrophe.

Finally, there were various troubles in the late-1700s. In fact, the authoritarian French class system had long put the clergy and aristocracy far more prominent than the common citizens. In addition, a number of far surpassed the nobles in terms of prosperity and standing.

English cartoon attacking the excesses of the Revolution as symbolized by the guillotine; between 18,000 and 40,000 people were executed during the Reign of Terror.

Furthermore, the exclusive titles—most of which had been bought and passed down using the families—essentially placed their holders above the law and except of them from various taxes. In 1789, when France’s ancient legislative body was reconvened, it became clear that the aristocracy refused to give up their special privileges for the sake of the country. Hence, “The French Revolution” became a battle to realize equality and eliminate subjugation. In fact, that was far more deep-rooted and widespread than the direct economic commotion France experienced at that time.

Apparently, the instant results of the “French Revolution” were unimportant, for the next leader following the Revolution was Napoleon Bonaparte, who enforced a dictatorship and negated the supreme democracy of the Revolution. However, the French Revolution was able to win many other victories, both substantial and insubstantial. Consequently, no French leader following the French Revolution challenged the property and rights possession realized in the French Revolution; hence the people who bought church land were permitted to keep it.  As well, the new tax system of France remained free of the influence of privilege, in a way that all people paid his share in proportion to individual wealth. Besides, the collapse of church and feudal bond gave freedom to the people from tithes and other gained fees. It however, does not imply that everything was well. The French industry endeavored for years following the Revolution to salvage a grip in such a severely diverse situation. In general, however, the French people had noted the effects they could have against their government, and that liberating, inspiring spirit was unlikely ever again to be covered up.

Depiction of the storming of the Tuileries Palace on 10 august 1792

The French Revolutionary Army defeated the combined armies of Austrians, Dutch and British at Fleurus in June 1794.

On the other hand, other European regimes and leaders were not too pleased with the French following the Revolution. The governments knew that their own people had seen the power that the French public held, and consequently, the governments were never again capable to feel safe in their rule after 1799. Besides, there had been other domestic revolutions in European countries, few were as enormous and complicated as the French Revolution, which empowered citizens everywhere and resulted in a considerable leap toward the end of oppression throughout Europe.

Posted by Janele Frederick | in Essays | Comments Off on French Revolution Essay: Causes and Effects

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