Lecture 2 The French Revolution - Lecture 2 Citizens The...

  • Drake University
  • HIST 002
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Lecture 2 -- Citizens: The French Revolution and Napoleon, 1789-1815 Timeline [----------------------------------------------------|---------------------------------------------] 1789 1799 1815 Fall of the Bastille Brumaire Waterloo I. The Significance of the French Revolution II. Long-term Origins III. Short-term Causes IV. The Revolution Phase 1: Moderates in Power V. The Revolution Phase 2: Radicals in Power and the Terror VI. The Revolution Phase 3: The Napoleonic Wars VII. The Legacy of the French Revolution I. SIGNIFICANCE OF THE FRENCH REVOLUTION. 1* This was the central event in the history of Modern Europe and Western Civilization. 2* It marked the point of transition between the Old Order and the New. 3* It also represented the most momentous upheaval of the Age of Revolution, 1775- 1848. 4* It inaugurated more changes than any other event in history. 5* To date it is the European event with the most enduring impact on the present. II. LONG-TERM ORIGINS. 1. The Population Boom. 6* France was the most powerful nation in continental Europe because it was the most populous nation in 1789. 1 out of every 5 Europeans was French. 7* Enormous population growth took place as France grew from 18-26 million from 1715-1789, a rise of 44%. 8* The population surge resulted from a decline in the mortality rate and drop in plague-and-disease-related deaths. 9* Advances in medicine and hygiene, including smallpox inoculation spread through western Europe. 10* There were more women of childbearing age and a decrease in the infant mortality rate. 11* The introduction of New World crops such as corn, beans, potatoes, and tomatoes brought better nutrition to European tables. 2. Urbanization.
12* The population growth led to a land squeeze that caused rural to urban migration. 13* Paris was a city of 500,000, Lyons had 135,000. 14* Landless peasants moved to the cities to eke out a living. 15* Unemployment increased. 16* The Revolution broke out because of lack of industrial employment in France. 17* On the eve of the Revolution there was a discontented, unemployed, and hungry urban proletariat 3. Power Struggle and Commercial Rivalry Between Great Britain and France. 18* War with Great Britain proved costly and contributed to public debt that brought down the monarchy. 19* France lost her American colonies in the Seven Years' War and sought revenge in the American Revolution. 20* Support of the American Revolutionaries cost her 2 billion livres. 21* While Britain built up its merchant marine and navy, France concentrated on building its land army and neglected its navy. 22* Britain was the dominant naval, colonial, and commercial power in the World 23* France was the strongest nation in continental Europe. 4. The Enlightenment. 24* Whereas the Renaissance began in Italy, the Enlightenment emerged in France. 25* Through the application of reason and science French publicists attacked church and state. 26* Philosophes called for the reformation or destruction of existing institutions. Descartes, Montesquieu, Voltaire, and Rousseau were the big four of the French Enlightenment.

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