The Estates General Background By 1787, France’s economy is in ruins for several reasons



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The Estates General


Background

  • By 1787, France’s economy is in ruins for several reasons

    • Lavish spending by Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette
    • Poor taxing policies
    • Seven Years War (1756-1763) and the American Revolution (1775-1783)


  • King Louis XVI promises to call together the Estates General, which had not met since 1614

  • Hopefully this will solve France’s problems

  • The Estates General is scheduled to meet on May 5th, 1789 at Versailles



  • Louis XVI, king of

  • France



What Was the Estates General?

  • This was a legislative assembly for the different French classes (Congress)

  • The Estates General was made up of three classes

    • Clergy-1st Estate
    • Nobility-2nd Estate
    • Bourgeoisie (peasants)-3rd Estate


Clergy

  • By 1789, the 1st Estate (Clergy) was made up of 100,000 people

  • Owned 5-10% of the land

  • All property was tax-exempt



  • Clergy



Nobility

  • The 2nd Estate (Nobility) was made up of 400,000 people

  • Enjoyed the better government jobs

  • Was also tax-exempt



  • Nobility



Bourgeoisie

  • The 3rd Estate (Bourgeoisie, peasants) was made up of 25 million people

  • The 3rd Estate paid all of the taxes

  • This means the burden fell on France’s poorest

  • Each Estate had one vote

  • The 1st and 2nd Estates usually voted together





  • The 3rd Estate had to sit by themselves at the Estates General

  • They had to wear black robes

  • Had to enter the Estates General through a side door

  • The 3rd Estate (98% of France) is getting fed up…



2008-2009 Academics Mid-Term

  • 1-25 Geography (there will be a map) 26-40 Countries and capitals (no map) 41-55 Middle Ages (matching) 56-62 Roman Numerals 63-71 Middle Ages 72-96 Renaissance 97-121 Absolute Monarchs 122-144 Reformation 145-180 French Revolution

  • There will also be an essay



2008-2009 Honors Mid-Term

  • 1-25 Geography (there will be a map) 26-40 Countries and capitals (no map) 41-55 Middle Ages (matching) 56-62 Roman Numerals 63-71 Middle Ages 72-96 Renaissance 97-121 Absolute Monarchs 122-144 Reformation 145-180 French Revolution 181-200 Scientific Revolution/Enlightenment There will also be an essay



Perform a Skit (10 points)

  • In groups of three, perform a skit about today’s material so everyone is involved

  • Some ideas include the following:

    • A meeting between Louis XVI and his advisors to discuss the economy crisis
    • The clergy and nobility ganging up on 3rd Estate (NO violence!)
    • Re-enact voting in the Estates General
    • Pretend you are a 3rd Estate family. What might you complain about?
    • 3rd Estate complaining about treatment at the Estates General



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