Causes Of The French Revolution

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During the Eighteenth Century, France had an absolute monarchy with Louis XVI as king and Marie Antoinette as queen. In that time period, French society was based upon a system of Estates where the clergy made up the First Estate; the nobility comprised the Second Estate, and everyone else including professionals, peasants, and the bourgeoisie made up the Third Estate. The Third Estate was immensely unhappy with the old regime, the Estates General, and Louis XVI’s leadership. France was also in the midst of a fiscal crisis due to the American Revolution, Louis XVI’s lavish lifestyle, the Seven Years War, and the tax exemption of the First and Second Estate. Following the surge of new ideas and impactful philosophers from the Enlightenment, the Third Estate was ready to start a revolution and abolish the Estates system. The most important causes of the French Revolution were the social and economic inequality of the Estates, the influence of the Enlightenment and the American Revolution, and the political weaknesses of France. Due to the social and economic disparities between the estates, those in the Third Estate wanted to start a revolution. In 1789: the clergy and nobility, who were only 3% of the population, had possession of 45% of the land. This means that the Third Estate, despite comprising 97% of the population, only owned 55% of the land (Document 2). Those in the Third Estate other than the professionals and merchants relied upon their land for their income since
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