Causes of the French Revolution
Louis XVI had inherited the throne at a very young age. As he inherited the throne, problems began to grow in France. The French government was already deeply in debt and Louis did not help at all. The poor could not afford the price of bread and peasants continued to pay most of the taxes. Although people were starving, the royal family continued to do nothing. The king called for a meeting of the Estates-General and the commoners finally presented their credentials, not as delegates of the Third Estate, but as “representatives of the nation.” What happened next?
Local revolutions started to break out all over France. Women rioted over the rising price of bread and marched on Versailles breaking into the palace and killing some of the guards. In response to this, Louis XVI was in fear and signed the Declaration of Rights of Man. The royal family was then forced to move to Paris where the people could watch them. The king and Queen then head to the Luxemburg border and try to escape to Austria. It didn’t work because the king was recognized. Many European rulers then feared that the revolution would spread to their countries and signed the Brunswick Manifesto which stated that “if the royal family is harmed, Paris would be leveled . Documents were then found at the Tuileries palace proving that the king was conspiring with the writes of the Brunswick Manifesto. He is arrested and soon after executed. Outcome of the French Revolution?
The French people finally overthrew the aristocracy of the day and took control. The Revolution swept away the French monarchy and nobility. Probably the best reforms to come out of the Revolution were the reforms that would be the cornerstone of a legal and administrative system. It may have been bloody and violent, but in the end it changed the economical, political, and social structure of France forever.
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