French Revolution and Causes

Topics: French Revolution, United States Declaration of Independence, Age of Enlightenment Pages: 4 (1528 words) Published: April 24, 2013
Explain the causes of French Revolution: (15 marks)
The French revolution-1789 was one of the great revolutions of the world history. It brought about far reaching changes in Europe. It is an arch type revolution that occurred in the history. We are all heirs to its influence. Causes:

Dictatorship of bourbons:
The roots of the revolution can be traced back to the times of Louis X1V (1643-1715). He was through-going dictator. Though France gained importance in Europe during his time, the grandeur of his court, the extravagance in waging wars or in building palaces resulted in a financial crisis. The lack of freedom for the people made them political slaves to the monarchy. During the time of Louis- XV (1715-1774), the dictatorship continued resulting in increasing political discontentment among the people. The political discontentment scaled to further heights in Louis-XV1 time. They believed in divine right theory and claimed themselves to be the ones who derived authority from God and that were only responsible to God and not to the consent of the people. This made France miserable. There was no means by which people can represent their grievances to the government. The Estates General, the parliament of France, was not summoned for 175 years. Any person could be arrested and punished without trial. Such conditions of authoritarianism led to revolution. Conditions in the Ancient Regime:

The Ancient Regime or old regime, as the order in prerevolutionary France is commonly called, was characterized by many evils and weaknesses. Among these were confusion and incompetence in administration, favouritism before law and excessive regulation of industry and commerce. A bewildering variety of overlapping administrative divisions and subdivisions made the French administration a master piece of red-tape and confusion. This was evident from legal affairs. Justice was administered not only in the name of the King, but also in that of the Church, the feudal lords and...
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