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Peasant Desperation and the French Revolution

            The quote "Life, liberty, fraternity or death " completely personifies the French Revolution. Men and women from all over the country of France rallied together to fight the injustice and cruelty of the French aristocracy. Their actions contributed to the fall of the aristocracy, although this allowed for a much crueler and more devastating system to arise. The French Revolution is the quintessence of a revolution's cyclical nature. The Revolution began with the injustice of ignorant rulers and ended with the maniacal tyranny of a paranoid revolutionary.
             The French society was highly based on social standing and occupation. The system was classified into three estates. The first estate consisted of the aristocracy and nobility of France. 130,000 French citizens were classified into the third estate and they owned twenty percent of the land in France. This estate included the French king, Louis XVI, and queen, Marie Antoinette. The second estate consisted of clerics and others heads of the church. 350,000 citizens were classified into this estate and they owned twenty-five to thirty percent of the land. The last and final estate consisted of the rest of France's population and they owned thirty-five to forty percent of the land. The third estate was mostly low class citizens and peasants. Although the third estate consisted of the majority of France they had little representative power. In most cases the Third estates complaints and concerns were outvoted by the first and second estate. This allowed for the first and second estate to control France even though they represented a small percent of the French population. The main concern of the Third Estate was the high amount of poverty that was plaguing the country of France. Bad harvests in 1787 and 1789 and a slowdown in manufacturing led to food shortages, rising food prices and unemployment. This added stress to an already fragile situation since France had already lost several thousands of livre in the past decades.

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