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THE FRENCH REVOLUTION The French Revolution was one of the greatest rebellions of the people against the government but what were the issues that caused it to happen What possessed the citizens of France to rise up against such a powerful monarchy Long- term issues relating to the economy and social structure the new philosophies in France and the decreasing power of the king were the main reasons that this uprising precipitated It is a common misconception that the French Revolution was an uprising of the peasants against the aristocrats In actuality the French Revolution was a revolt started by the middle-class and finished by the peasants In the eighteenth century trade and commerce was growing in France This economic change brought a rise to the Bourgeoisie or middle-class Although many members of the middle-class had a larger income than members of the nobility the taxes they were required to pay prevented them from moving up in society Throughout time and empires problems with the economy have ruined civilizations and eighteenth century France was no different Preceding the revolution France had taken active roles in many wars These wars included the Wars of Louis XIV Seven Years War and the American War for Independence In the Seven Years War France lost many of its colonies to Britain this caused resentment in France All these wars over time had put the French government in large debt The only way for the government to return borrowed money was to increase taxes The government created tension in the social system because a vast majority of French society thought the taxation was unjust because only a certain group of people was taxed The social system in France was divided into what was called Estates The first estate was the Roman Catholic Church the second estate was the aristocracy and the third estate consisted of both the peasantry and the bourgeoisie middle-class Another characteristic of French society
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