French Revolution Vocabulary Estate- one of the 3 distinct social classes in France in the 1700’s Estates General



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French Revolution Vocabulary

Estate- One of the 3 distinct social classes in France in the 1700’s
Estates General- meeting of the three estates to vote on new taxation laws
Absolute Monarchy- king or queen with total power
Louis XIV- Known as the sun king, he lived an extravagant lifestyle and waged many wars against Great Britain and Spain which depleted France’s treasury
Louis XVI- King during French Revolution, he called the Estates General together.
Palace of Versailles- Extravagant building that represented Louis XIV’s lifestyle.
Tyranny- Unrestricted use of power.
Taxation- When people are made to pay a certain amount that is put on income, property and sales.
Marie Antoinette- Wife of Louis XVI
Lack of Social Mobility- Inability to move out of your social class.
Crop Failures- Unsuccessful crop growth.
National Debt- The amount of money a government owes.
Bastille- Prison is Paris that was overtaken by the third estate, symbol of royal tyranny.
Robespierre- (Radical) Leader of Jacobins and Committee for Public Safety.
Committee of Public Safety- Group who ruled France during the reign of terror and promoted radical ideas.
National Assembly- The gathering of the third estate to set up a new constitution.
Radical- Group favoring extreme changes in government policy.
Moderate- Group open to minor changes in the government.
Conservative- Group that favors maintaining the status quo.
Guillotine- Device designed to behead people during the reign of terror.
Liberty, Equality, Fraternity”- Slogan of the radicals.
Reign of Terror- Period in France during the revolution when opposition was killed.
Directory- Council of 5 men who tried to restore order to France.
Girondins- Moderate group who felt the revolution had gone far enough.
Jacobins- Extreme radicals in favor of the reign of terror.
Declaration of the Rights of Men- Document created in 1789 stating all men are equal before the law. Today it is the French Constitution.
Tennis Court Oath- Agreement among the third estate to keep meeting until a new constitution was formed.
National Convention- Met from 1792-1795 and wrote the first democration constitution
Constitution- Created in 1791 which kept a monarchy but limited loyal powers.
Old Regime- French society before the revolution.
Bourgeoisie- Top educated members of the third estate (middle class)
1789- Start of the French Revolution.
Napoleon- French dictator at the end of the Revolution.
Napoleonic Code- Unified law  Made French law clear and concise.
Coup d’etat- Overthrow of the government.
Scorched Earth Policy- Burning everything of use when retreating, The Russians did this as they retreated from Napoleon.
Nationalism- Pride in ones country.
Plebiscite- Popular vote.
Continental System- Napoleon ordered all European nations to stop trade with British, he wanted to use economic warfare against the British.
Metternich- Chief Minister of Austria who wanted to restore Europe to Pre-Revolution status.
Congress of Vienna- Powerful European aristocrats gathered to discuss way to prevent political and social unrest in Europe.
Reactionary- Favors to return past/traditional policies.
Status quo- The existing state or condition (the norm)
Concert of Europe- The regular meetings held to settle international problems.
Prussia- Originally one of Napoleon’s allies, but revolted after the Spaniards overthrew them.



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