history, the terro

history, the terro - Bobby Krivitsky Michael Ebner History...

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Bobby Krivitsky Michael Ebner History 112 February 10, 2011 Can the Terror be Justified? In 1789, we saw the beginning of the French Revolution. Here, we saw the beheading of a king, numerous riots and acts of rebellion, and the abolition of the feudal system. However, let us first look at life before the French Revolution and the events leading up to it. Prior to the French Revolution, France was under Ancien Regime. One of the key features of Ancien Regime is the fact that it preaches absolutism. Absolutism states that all power should be vested in one ruler or one authority figure. (dictionary.com). At the time, France was led by king Louis XIV a member of the French group known as the Bourbons. King Louis XIV had married Catherine the Great of the Romanovs of Russia. (Lecture January 24th). In doing so, Louis XIV and Catherine the Great had united two absolutist dynasties. France was a monarchy and monarchies were absolutist. In addition to this, Ancien Regime is autocratic. (Lecture January 24th). What this means is that from war to laws to taxes, King Louis XIV controlled all aspects of France. At the time, France featured a representative institution known as the estates general. The estates general consists of three estates that deliberate and vote. However, the estates general power was consultative and they did not possess any genuine authority. The first estate is the clergy who levy taxes on peasants, this tax is known as the tithe. The second estate consists of the nobility, while the third estate features the commoners. The commoners made up ninety-five to ninety-eight percent of the
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community. (Lecture January 24th). Thus was France’s social structure. Sadly, peasants made up eighty percent of the population and despite being the lowest and poorest class had to pay the most taxes. Peasants had to pay fifty percent of their harvest for feudal obligations. For example, peasants had to pay rent to their seigneur, a state tax known as the taille and had to pay one thirteenth of their harvest to the church in a tax known as the tithe. There were also the everyday taxes they had to pay on things such as milling and grain. (Lecture January 24th). While the first two classes did not have to pay taxes, the peasants the lowest class were forced to pay a significant amount of the small salary they made in taxes. The Ancien regime was a system that was unjust and unfair and due to the fact that it placed the largest burden on the lowest class, the class that also featured majority of the population, it was a system that was destined to be overthrown regardless of the length that people would have to go to.
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This note was uploaded on 01/30/2012 for the course HISTORY 112 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '10 term at Syracuse.

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history, the terro - Bobby Krivitsky Michael Ebner History...

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