Economy of France During French Revolution

Topics: Louis XVI of France, Louis XIV of France, Louis XV of France Pages: 1 (368 words) Published: October 25, 2010
ΕΧΟΝΟΜΨ ΟΦ ΦΡ“ΝΧΕ ΔΥΡΙΝΓ ΦΡΕΝΧΗ ΡΕςΟΛΥΤΙΟΝ Along with massive unchecked spending on the part of the monarchs themselves before the French Revolution, there were a number of other issues that had a dramatic impact on the French financial situation. For one thing, the national debt was quite large in the years before the French Revolution. In addition to the fact that there were several bad decisions made by officials and advisors as they tried to improve the financial situation after the Seven Years’ War and the American Revolution, both of which almost decimated the treasury because of the size of the armies required. Besides the costs of the wars, King Louis XVI built a giant palace called Versailles which was a testament to unchecked spending with vast amounts of gold decorating the interior. Estimates suggest that over 7 to 10 percent of the national treasury was spent on the palace. “By 1685, the effort engaged 36,000 workers, not including the thousands of troops who diverted a river to supply water for fountains and pools. Royal workshops produced tapestries, carpets, mirrors, and porcelains” The King (and those before him as well) also had large courts and there was a large amount of money spent on entertainment and courtly expenses.      Aside from the debt issues plaguing France in the years prior to the French Revolution, there was also the issue of provincial corruption which had a devastating effect on the financial situation of the already floundering French economy. Throughout the succession of rulers during the Bourbon reign, corruption among minor and regional authorities was a rampant problem, especially considering that the tax system wrung money out of the peasantry (which was a majority of the French population under the monarchial system) and went into the hands of nobles rather than back into state funds. Like many other revolutions with similar motivations, these financial issues were at the forefront. Although the Sun King held the reins...
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