Were the French Right to Execute Their King?

Topics: French Revolution, Louis XVI of France, Guillotine Pages: 2 (497 words) Published: November 30, 2010
Were the French Revolutionaries Right To Execute Their King? Over the years since the execution of Louis 16th there have been several different discussions as to whether it was right for the French revolutionaries to execute their king. There are a number of reasons to lead people to think that it was right that Louis 16th was beheaded by the blood stained blade of the guillotine. The defendants of the revolutionaries state that Louis 16th was a horrific traitor to the majority of his people. The first was that he believed in feudalism, “slavery and all sorts of things that were genuinely satanic.” The French Revolution saw peasants in the third estate rebel against an extremely corrupt tax system that caused millions of deaths and years of famine. French society was organised into three estates. The first two estates (church and nobility) enjoyed great privileges. The third estate, which had no privileges had to pay all the taxes. This system was called “The Ancient Regime.” The third estate consisted of ninety six percent of the population and the remaining four percent were the first and second estates. In 1700s the cost of living was rising fast but wages remained low. This, along with the corrupt tax system plunged the third estate deep into a huge economic crisis which left them fighting over scraps of food. There were also new ideas spreading in 1700s. For example the American Declaration of Independence in 1776 included ideas such as; all people are born equal, people have rights and the government should govern in the interests of the people. None of these were happening in France. Lastly, King Louis spent a lot of the money that he had collected from the third estate on luxuries. On the other hand, there are people with contrasting views who believe that the French king should not have been executed. There first and most important argument is that Louis did ask the first and second estates to pay taxes but they refused. As a result it was not his fault...
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