Essay on The French Revolution

1168 Words May 4th, 2016 5 Pages
At the backbone of European history, the French Revolution was an important sequence of events that changed world history with its ideas and outcomes. Before the commencement of the French Revolution, France was in a period called the Old Regime, which was an absolute monarchy ruled by Louis XIV ("The Old Regime in France: Absolute Monarchy."). Traditionally, in the Old Regime, society was broken down into three estates; the clergy (first), the nobility (second), and everyone else (third). The first and second estates were very rich because members of the second estate were the tax collectors, meaning they paid no taxes, and members of the first estate were part of the church, so they paid no taxes. During this time, France was in extensive debt as a result of spending numerous amounts of money on wars, such as the American Revolution and the French and Indian war. In the years leading up to the beginning of the Revolution, bad weather destroyed large portions of France’s food supply, causing food prices to be raised and widespread hunger to set in throughout the third estate. In addition to crisis in French financing, scholars and other citizens in the third estate who were influenced by the enlightenment began to question the king’s “god given right to rule” and the ideas of human rights. The French Revolution was a major turning point in world history, which underwent a number of important phases that eventually lead to the development of democracy in France and the…

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