• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How far were the ideas of the Philosophers responsible for the outbreak of the French Revolution?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

´╗┐Jacob NobleHistory Essay How far were the ideas of the Philosophers responsible for the outbreak of the French Revolution? At the beginning of the 18th century, new ideas began to be spread across the country about new concepts such as science, which completely shook the church and the government as it discredited their ideas majorly. For years, the people of France had believed and accepted in established order and the idea of divine right, that the King had been chosen by God to become the leader of the country and to bring it forward, economically and socially. A strong sense of absolutism was enforced and people accepted their place in society, and worshipped under the strong Catholic Church. However, these were all debated by the new philosophers who believed it was time for social reform and significant changes in the way science was used and accepted at the time. One of the main criticisms made by the philosophers was the narrow mindedness of the Catholic Church and the way the population merely accepted their views and treated them as facts of the reason they existed and the way their lives were set out. ...read more.

Middle

Along with this, philosophers such as John Locke believed that all people were born equal with ‘natural rights’ of life, liberty, and property with disagreed with the idea of God giving everyone a set path that they must live, and rather that science affected the population and the way they evolved and led their lives. Diderot also brought forward new ideology in his book called the L’Encylopèdie which not only showed knowledge and insight of the past but also offered new ones of the philosophers. For many years, the ideas of divine right were accepted and strongly enforced, however the concepts of Montesquieu discredited this, and said that absolutism was not the way forward, and that the people should be able to support whom they desired. He also wished that the government was split into three branches, that would offer complete balance of the country and that the country was not to be ruled by one man who was to be completely depended upon just because he was ‘chosen by God’. This theory was to be proven later by the actions of King Louis XVI who failed to run the country and ...read more.

Conclusion

The philosophers strongly disagreed with the idea of class separation and how the third estate were taxed at a ridiculous way, compared to those who were exempt from such, like the Churchmen and the Nobles. They believed people should be made more equal and social reform should occur for the economy to recover and boom again. Overall, I believe that the philosophers played a huge role in the beginning of the French Revolution as their ideas provoked thought and completely disagreed with nearly everything the Church stood for. It brought new ideas which excited the people of France and led them to realise their narrow views and the evident need for social reform for France to move forward as a country. Many people had turned away from the monarchy and believed it was no longer efficient in running the country alone. Criticisms of the poverty of the third estate and the status of the Bourgeoisie led the young population to accept and indulge themselves in the new ideas that the philosophers began to uncover. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Major Causes of French Revolution

    4 star(s)

    rise in food prices to increase their daily expenditures on bread to level far beyond their means. Thus, peasants and urban tradesmen and workers- not to mention manufacturers- were drawn together in a connection of hostility towards the government, landlords, merchants and speculators.

  2. How far were the ideas of the "Philosophes" responsible for the outbreak of the ...

    France wanted to show Britain, their enemies how strong they were by helping the Americans fight British and win the war. However this competition against the British only led to financial ruin as France became bankrupt. The many wars France was included in the 18th century landed them in colossal debt which put them in crisis in the 1770s-80s.

  1. How far were the ideas of the philosophes responsible for the outbreak of the ...

    the old regime, built up of the three estates with an absolute monarch at the head. The First Estate, made up of the clergy, enjoyed many privileges such as tax exception and tithe collection. These privileges made the clergy appear corrupt with wealth and many bishops did not even visit their diocese.

  2. In the process of consolidating his position, Napoleons reforms, had by 1808, destroyed the ...

    Accordingly, this showed Napoleon's neglect in fulfilling the Revolution's 'equality' principle. This inequality was furthered by the reform's negligence of the education of girls as well as of the subject of Science. Moreover, an 'Imperial University' was also established - this was like a Ministry of Education and ensured the

  1. Why did the French Revolution end in 1799?

    For his accomplishments with the "whiff of grapeshot", Napoleon received, as gratitude, a promotion to commander of the Army of Interior. Upon seeing this as a threat to their power, the Directory changed the promotion to the French army of Italy were he would fight against Austria.

  2. Russian Revolution Sources Questions

    be head of the communist party .Its almost certain, if Zinoviev had not spoke up and informed the other party members that Lenin was in the final stages of his illness and was not clear on what was going on at the time, that Stalin would have been removed from his position as General Secretary to the party.

  1. Russian Revolution Sources Question

    But there is no doubt that Lenin had a huge impact on Russia and the Russian people. Without Lenin Russia would probably not of become a communist country in November 1917. He was the main person who encouraged the Russians to seize power, many thought they had to wait.

  2. To what extent were the Bourgeoisie responsible for the outbreak of Revolution in 1789?

    the financial crisis it is very unlikely that the ideas of the philosophes would have led to revolution. However, with the the ideas of Enlightenment, they managed to succeed in creating a new state across the ocean called the USA, showing that the ideas of critiquing religion and a separation

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work