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Rob Wilhite- AM

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FC: PORTFOLIO | French Revolution | Delcaroix, Eugene. "Liberty Leading the People" Digital image. The French Revolution. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Nov. 2012. .

1: Causes of the French Revolution | Nain, Le. Famille De Paysans. Digital image. Homelife in Peasantry. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Nov. 2012. . | David, Jacques L. The National Assembly. Digital image. Teach Net. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Nov. 2012. | There were four main causes to the French Revolution. One problem was money. France was in great debt due to war and the extensive spending on luxuries by the royal family This caused the king to impose even greater taxes, which made many people angry. usually, the first two estates were exempt from paying taxes, but when France went into great debt, the king tried to make the first two estates pay taxes, but they refused.The third estate resented the first two The second cause was years of bad weather, causing bad harvests to the crops.The peasants and farmers had smaller incomes, while food prices rose sharply. Many farmers became unemployed and often starved.Meanwhile, the nobly, clergy, and royalty were still living in royalty,which caused great anger from the peasants, who made up about 97% of the population. Another cause was Louis XVI calling the estates general. France was split into 3 estates: the first made of the clergy, the second made of the nobles. and the third estate made of everyone else. At the estates general, the third estate was unfairly represented, as always, and were treated unfairly, while the first and second estates had their rights. This caused the third estate to resent the first two even more.The third estate broke off into the fourth cause, and made the national assembly. THe national assembly was made of 97% of the population, and now all those people who were treated unfairly for years had a voice and an opinion, which could be dangerous for the resented upper estates. they wanted to draw up a true constitution for FRance, and considered themselves the true parliament. On June 20, they met at the royal tennis court and took the tennis court oath, pledging not to leave until the king agreed to meet their commands.

2: Louis XIV. Digital image. How Stuff Works. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2012. . | Ill start with our reigning monarchs. While we, the third estate were living in poverty, the upper classes and our monarchs live in luxury, tax free, and without a care in the world. We the people, resent the upper two classes and the monarchs. King Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, (Madame Defecit), Lived in their wonderful Versailles Palace some ten miles away from the city of Paris. Maybe if they lived in the city they'd notice the poor conditions. The first and second estates also lived in luxury. During the Estates General, our King didn't speak one word and we were unfairly treated and represented. Sick of the rule, we as a people broke off to form the National Assembly, and be the true governing body of France.

3: Marie Antoinette. Digital image. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Nov. 2012. . | hghjh

5: The assembly had all supplies needed to ensure a good revolt if needed. We had large ranks, weapons, food, and more. The only thing we lacked was gun powder, and Bastille Prison was the place to get it. So on July 14, 1789, we stormed the prison, taking down any guards in our way and grabbed any supplies we wanted. This officially sparked the French Revolution and showed that we weren't scared to revolt.Soon after, on August 27 we adopted the Declaration of the Rights of Man, and made our first constitution. The declaration guaranteed us "liberty, property, security, and resistance to oppression." Finally, we had rights. Soon the legislative Assembly took over with the new documents and government

6: While the Assembly was growing more and more powerful, the upper classes and royalty were growing weaker and weaker. The Legislative Assembly soon changed yet again, and became the National Convention. By this time many of upper class residents decided to join our cause and our government. In April of 1792, France declared war on Austria. I don't know much about it but i know that it further weakened the Monarchs and caused us more debt. Outraged, we the people forced the king and queen to move into Paris and soon imprisoned them. The convention ended the monarchy and soon after the king and queen fled with their family, afraid of what was to become of them. They were stopped right before the end of their journey and brought back to Paris. The people tried King Louis XVI for treason and had him beheaded by the guillotine, the favorite tool used for execution throughout the revolution. Louis XVI is executed in 1793. Digital image. Bastille Day and the French Revolution. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2012. .

8: While France was still confused on power and everything was still hectic, a influencial speaker they called Maximilien Robespierre, who had spread many ideas on the new France, and was President of the National Convention took over the Committee of Public Safety. I don't quite understand this guy, because before he became the leader of this terrible thing, he wanted to rid France of the death penalty, and give natural rights. What he actually did was the complete opposite. He had thousands of people executed for saying or doing anything that went against the law, or what he thought was right. This caused the Reign of Terror. It was so called, because it caused mass terror throughout France because at any moment your name could be called and the Committee could come take you away and have you killed for expressing your opinion.I remember remaining dead silent anytime I feared someone to turn my name in. This terror lasted from July 1793 to July 1794. The last prisoners awaiting execution during the Reign of Terror in 1794, undated engraving. Digital image. Britannica. Credit: Photos.com/Jupiterimages, n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2012. .

9: Carnavalet, Mussee. Robespierre. Digital image. Wikipedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2012. .

10: David, Jacques L. Napoleon Crossing the Alps. Digital image. Wikipedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2012. . | Napoleon as Emperor. Digital image. Georgian Index. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2012. .

11: After the Reign of Terror, once again France was left without true leadership, and was in need of a general. This is where our leader Napoleon Bonaparte took over.In October of 1795, royalists rebels marched on the National Convention, and Napoleon and his gunners caused the attackers to panic and fled with confusion. He soon became known as 'hero of the hour and savior of the French Republic.' After being made general, Napoleon's friends urged him to take political power, and he soon did. His troops surrounded the national legislature and drove most of the members out. The remaining members voted to dissolve the directory, which was an executive governing body of five men, my cousin being one of them.France was then ruled by three consuls, Napoleon being the first and claimed all the powers of a dictator. The people, excited by this new found leader took on the phrase coup d'etat, which meant "blow to the state.' Which was the case here because the states power was suddenly seized.. Napoleon did many great things for us and for the country. He set up an efficient method of tax collection and established a national banking system.He dismissed corrupt officials, and set up lycees, what we called public schools. Finally he signed a concordant with the pope that separated church and state power. H e gained support of the organized church and support of a lot of people including myself, until his downfall. Soon he became greedy and made the Napoleonic Code. It limited our liberty and promoted authority of our individual rights. It also brought slavery back into the French colonies. I know me and hundreds of others started to doubt our ruler, but didn't do much about it and trusted in our leader. In 1804, Napoleon took his rule the highest step up and crowned himself Emperor of France, taking the crown from the Pope's hands himself. Napoleon forged an empire in less than 10 years, and had the love of many people, until he brought upon his downfall...

13: Napoleons greatest weakness was his greed for power. I remember hearing of three costly mistakes he made that led to his downfall and defeat. The first mistake was the continental system. This system was made to make continental Europe more self-sufficient, by cutting off all trade and communication with Britain, and creating a blockade on Great Britain. It was not nearly tight enough, and many items were still smuggled. And due to Britain's navy, they were better able to setup a blockade to crush ours. His second mistake was fighting in the Peninsular War. Portugal was ignoring the continental system, so our emperor sent forces through Spain to invade Portugal.While the Spanish protested these actions, Napoleon removed their king and replaced him with his brother. Spanish guerillas fought against us for 6 years. With the help of Britain, France lost 300,000 men, which greatly weakened the empire. Many people were big on nationalism, and soon Spain, Germany, and Italy. His last mistake was the invasion of Russia. At times i felt I, a peasant could've governed France better at times. The army was already brutally weak and Napoleon was getting us into yet another battle. i feared for my county. Apparently the Czar of Russia refused to stop selling grain to Britain. Also both Napoleon and the Czar were fighting over Poland. Out of greed Napoleon invaded Russia with 420,000 troops and it proved to be his biggest mistake yet. Being smart, Alexander refused to be engaged in unequal battle, and pulled back his troops. He soon activated the scorched earth policy- burning grain fields and slaughtering livestock to leave nothing for our soldiers, my sons, to eat. I heard a great story that when Napoleon marched into Moscow, he found it burning . The Czar burned his city that he loved so much so it wouldn't be taken by the our soldiers. As soon as Napoleon wanted to turn back to France, the cold and harsh weather came and Russian raiders took advantage and mercilessly attacked the ragged and tired army.At the end some 10,000 soldiers were left. At this point everyone knew of Napoleon's weakness, and took advantage.With Austria, Britain, Russia, Prussia, and Sweden against France, our generals refused to fight. Napoleon soon raised a new army within a month but it was unexperienced and weak. In April of 1814, our leader finally accepted defeat. He was exiled to a small island named Elba. Louis XVI 's brother assumed the throne. We as peasants soon suspected him of undoing the revolution's land reforms, and Napoleon took this as a sign to regain power. So he escaped from Elba, raised another army, and ruled France again as emperor for 100 days, known as the 'Hundred Days.' Napoleons final stand was the battle of Waterloo. Napoleon attacked opposing forces but was soon beat by the Prussian and British forces. Napoleon was shipped to St. Helena, and lived there in exile for 6 years until he died in 1821 with stomach problems. This marked the end of the French Revolution. In the end, many lives were lost, many forms of governments were tried. The only perk I've seen through this is a sense of freedom for the people, and self government.

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