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The decade spanning from 1789 to 1799 is remembered in history for the French Revolution. French citizens took to the streets, razed and redesigned the political landscape, uprooting the feudal and monarchy system in the process. Age-old institutions topped as a result and just as any other historical revolution, it had in its heart inalienable rights and popular sovereignty as desires. While the movement itself was difficult and chaotic, unable to achieve its goals, it did show the world what the will of the commoners can do to a country.
Something must have spark the French revolution and it is understanding this prelude that matters a lot in comprehending the revolution itself. In short, the fault lies with the bankruptcy France experienced owing to extravagant spending by King Louis XVI, plus France’s involvement in the American Revolution. Add to this the fact that the country was already ravaged with cattle disease, poor harvests and inflation never before seen. It led to unrest among the poor and peasants ultimately culminating in resentment towards the heavy taxes being levied by the state.
Eventually, the Revolution claimed over 17,000 lives after official trials and numerous more who perished without a trial or even in prison.