The Factors And Causes Of The French Revolution

1202 Words 5 Pages
“He wanted to be a good king and help his subjects, but he faced enormous debt and rising resentment towards a despotic monarchy . . . Louis lacked sufficient strength of character and decisiveness to combat the influence of court factions or give support to reformers in their efforts to improve France 's government” (qtd. in “Louis XVI). The last king of France, King Louis XVI ruled during the French Revolution until he was eventually overthrown and executed. The French Revolution occurred due to the dissatisfaction among the citizens of France (mostly the peasants) regarding the government and the monarchs. Absolute monarchy was established in France for about a century and was in place before and during the beginning of the French Revolution. …show more content…
The first factor that contributed to the beginning of the French Revolution was the extraordinary debt France collected. In the 17th and early 18th century, France was a powerhouse, dominating Europe at it’s height. But, by 1815 France was in a economic turnwell. Most of the debt was accumulated due to the poor decisions made by the French Monarchy, specifically the cost of war and unfair taxation. Four years prior to the beginning of the French Revolution, another revolution began in the United States. The war did not just end with military and diplomatic triumphs for France, the war also resulted in another million livres which was added to France’s already enormous debt. Another reason France had so much debt was the unfair taxation on the common people or the third estate. Although combined together the first estate (made up of the clergy) and second estate (made up of the nobility) only made up about 2% of the total French population, they held about 35% of the total land …show more content…
Louis XVI was not the ideal king people imagined when they imagined a king. A king was expected to be strong, for a strong king meant a strong government. But instead King Louis XVI is described as the opposite of a strong ruler based on characteristics such as how he “lacked self-confidence and depended on others for advice on how to rule” (qtd. in Nardo). The people saw him as weak and unable to handle a country. As the views of the enlightenment grew popular, absolutism was growing out of favor. The people wanted a new government in place of an absolute monarch. In addition, his lack of self-confidence and weak appearance also affected how decisions were made. When Louis and his advisors tried to put in place a more distributed system of taxing, the nobles resisted. This shows how absolute monarchy was not as a threat or valued as much as it was centuries earlier. The kings who pre-succeeded Louis had unrestricted power as what they said was the law and the people accepted it, but in this situation they’re resisting his power and undermining his authority. Throughout the course of the French Revolution, starting at the event of the bread riots or known as the “flour wars” and the storming of Bastille, the monarch were unable to control riots and protests against the government/monarch. And because they were unable to control riots and protest, the people became stronger and

Related Documents