Impact of the French Revolution essay

The great French Revolution occurred in Europe from 1789-1799. It is referred to as the “great Revolution” because there are other French Revolutions which occurred in Europe. It commenced after the States general had met in May. King Louis the 16th and his family were forced to go to Paris. The King made many attempts to go to Varennes but he did not succeed. He faced a trial which led to his execution in 1793. (Guizot, 1896). This was a period of disturbance and turmoil in France and Europe as a whole. Terror reigned in the whole land with leaders ruling with tyranny and domination.

The Revolution resulted in to other events like Napoleonic wars and two more Revolutions. The Revolution brought so much disorder in Europe and civil wars were further encouraged by the Parisian mob. The French government had to change drastically from its status of absolute monarchy to a structure founded on Enlightenment principles. Dictatorship was the form of governance at this time. The ancient regimes’ old aristocratic order formed an alliance with the rich, oppressed peasants and people who depended on wages to make a living.

This is thought to have been the cause of the Revolution. There are also other historians who assert that the Revolution was caused when the ancient regime of the old aristocratic order came in to logger heads with the poor, and the low-wage earners in the society. However, one thing is quite clear. The ancient regime of the old aristocratic order was responsible for the French Revolution. The changes that the Revolution brought upon Europe include: Social, economical, cultural, political and liberal changes.

The other Revolutions which took place in Europe, between 1830 and 1871, were spearheaded by the same goals as those of the great Revolution. There was the desire by the people for the standards of living to improve and also many people wanted to acquire citizenship. (Samuel, 1913) Impact of the French Revolution The French Revolution had various impacts on France and the whole of Europe. It had a very important effect on the intellectual and the political life of Europe. There were economic impacts which were experienced due to the Revolution.

France suffered huge bad debts which were quite unmanageable. This forced the country to go in to a level where it could not meet the needs of its citizens. This was very unfair to the citizens as their standards of living had to go really down. The psychological and social burdens of wars which had occurred in the 18th century had been borne stoically by the citizens. However, the Revolution seemed to make the burdens heavier for the citizens to bear. There was also a system of taxation which was not favorable to the country due to the Revolution.

The taxes were considerably very high for the country to do well in any commercial dealings. The Revolution was made worse by the absence of support of the monarchy rule to the veterans of war. This resulted in to a huge national debt. The poor people in the country did not have enough resources to put food on the table. Worse still, they could not afford a balanced meal. This made many of them suffer from malnutrition. At the time, most land in the country was owned by the Roman Catholic Church. The church did not support the people in their plight. Instead it levied a high tax on crops.

This did not work in the best interest of the people who continued to suffer due to lack of food. The Revolution had a great influence on the development of Europe economically. (Tyler, 1825). The Revolution was accepted by some English radicals like, William Godwin and Thomas Paine who regarded it as a vehicle through which humanity could regain its perfection and be restored in to glory. Politically, Europe had to undergo great changes due to the Revolution. The idea of political legitimacy being linked to domestic social structures was also supported by the Revolution.

It believed that this was what was responsible for determining the way a state will be structured politically. The Revolution brought a difference in the amount of resources that Europe was allowed to channel in the International market. Thus the international competition was also put in check. This totally changed the way Europe related with the international society. The Revolution actually brought reactions in the governments throughout Europe in the field of intelligence gathering. Hence, the political order of the governments of countries throughout Europe had to be restructured.

The Revolution was able to overturn the monarchy rule and it constituted a constitution republic. Although, this was only made possible, through chaos. The world considers the Revolution as a model for change and inspiration. (Guizot, 1896). Foreign wars in Europe resulted due to the Revolution. This is because the France citizens and people all over Europe did not understand the importance of the Revolution. They were unclear on the fact that it was a fight for change of the poor living styles many people were exposed to.

The first Republic that came up as a result of Revolution did not last for long as it was eventually overthrown in 1799 by Napoleon. This was not done peacefully, as it was characterized by the guillotine, angry Paris crowd and many disturbances. (Samuel, 1913) Conclusion In conclusion, the French Revolution was thought to be a symbol of change and a war through which the living standards of many people would be improved. However, quite a large segment of Europe’s population suffered as a result of the Revolution. Alexander Tyler had mixed feelings about the Revolution.

Due to this, he decided to write a book viewing out his opinions of the same. (Tyler, 1825). The French Revolution can be compared to the American Revolution as both resulted in to a constitution set up of the government. Similarly, both of the Revolutions came up for the same cause. That is, to improve the living standards of citizens in both of the regions.


Guizot, F. (1896): General History of Civilization in Europe. New York Harding & Samuel B. (1913): New Medieval and Modern History. New York Tyler F. (1825): Elements of general history. Prentice Hall. New York