The french revolution and napoleon
The French Revolution and Napoleon by Charles Downer HazenThe years from 1789 to 1815, the years of the Revolution and of Napoleon, effected one of the greatest and most difficult transitions of which history bears record, and to gain any proper sense of its significance one must have some glimpse of the background, some conception of what Europe was like in 1789... One thing, at least, it was not: it was not a unity. There were states of every size and shape and with every form of government. The States of the Church were theocratic; capricious and cruel despotism prevailed in Turkey; absolute monarchy in Russia, Austria, France, Prussia; constitutional monarchy in England; while there were various kinds of so-called republics – federal republics in Holland and Switzerland, a republic whose head was an elective king in Poland, aristocratic republics in Venice and Genoa and in the free cities of the Holy Roman Empire...
Contents: The Old Regime In Europe - The Old Regime in France - Beginnings of the Revolution - The Making of the Constitution - The Legislative Assembly - The Convention - The Directory - The Consulate - The Early Years of the Empire - The Empire at Its Height - The Decline and Fall of Napoleon
Bonaparte was optimistic about bringing French revolutionary politics to Corsica. We see him there handing out cockades, and he helped found a political club. His family bought nationalized church lands. By , he got himself elected as the lieutenant colonel of the National Guard. Learn more about Young Napoleon.
When he invited his subjects to express their opinions and grievances in preparation for this event—unprecedented in living memory—hundreds responded with pamphlets in which the liberal ideology of gradually began to take shape. Exactly how the Estates-General should deliberate proved to be the pivotal consciousness-raising issue. Each of the three Estates could vote separately by order as they had in the distant past, or they could vote jointly by head. Because the Third Estate was to have twice as many deputies as the others, only voting by head would assure its preponderant influence. If the estates voted by order, the clergy and nobility would effectively exercise a veto power over important decisions.