French revolution

French Revolution Timeline (1788-1815)

  • Robespierre elected as Deputy for the 3rd Estate

    He witnessed the onset of the Revolution that broke the power of absoulte monarchy two months later.
  • The Estate General Open at Versailles

    The Estate General was the legislative body that consisted of the three estates of the French realm.
  • The Third Estate declares itself the National Assembly

    National Assembly is an assembly not of the Estates but composed of the People. They invited the other orders to join them, making it clear that they intended to conduct the nation’s affairs with or without them.
  • The Tennis Court Oath

    The Estates General began to weaken when its framework led to a difference of opinion within the Third Estate. The Third Estate decided to stick with representing their right and opposed Louis XVI when he did not allow each delegate to vote. The Third Estate, which was made up of mostly Bourgeoisie, were locked out of a meeting of the Estates General, so they met inside a tennis court where they establish the National Assembly and reasoned to draw up a constitution based on popular sovereignty.
  • The Great Fear

    Political crisis and rural unrest was present in France. Peasants went hungry, grain prices rapidly increased, and people went broke trying to buy bread. Rumors also sparked the "Great Fear" when rumors led to panic within villages that governemnt troops were taking peasant crops. During hard times, peasants attacked the nobles when nobles tried to reimpose medieval dues by ransacking the castles of the nobles and destrying documents. Peasants fought against the unjust regime.
  • The Fall of Bastille

    When rumors spread about royal troops occupying Paris, many Parisians gathered outside the Bastille, a medieval fortress used as a prison to demand weapons and gun poweder. Chaos broke out, killing hundreds in the crowd. The mob broke through the barriers, finding no weapons. This event became a symbol of tyranny and a symbol of the French Revolution.
  • Jacobins clubs were created, main person was Robsepierre

    Over 900 Jacbins in Frence associated with the main club in Paris. Closed after Robespieree was killed in 1794
  • National Constituent Assembly

    The nobles surrender their feudal rights.
  • The Declaration of the Rights of Man- "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity"

    First step toward a constitution. It was based of of the structure of the American Declaration of Indpendence. It stated all men were, "born and remain free and equal in rights." Natural rights to, "liberty, property, security, and resistance to oppression." It also declared all male citizens equal before the law. French men were allowed to hold public office with "no distinctions on their virtues and talents." Asserted freedom of religions and taxed to be levied according to pay.
  • Women march on Versailles

    A large crowd of women began to riot over the scarce quantity of bread and the rising prices of it. The women marched for twelve miles from Paris to Versailles. These women were fed up with the extravagant living of the King and Queen, when they were going hungry. The women demanded for the King to return with them to Paris. He agreed. The women were taking action during the revolution. This signifies that the king was no longer in control to make decions. Favored the common people.
  • Civil Constitution of Clergy

    The Catholic Church was taken over by the National Assembly, in which they established a national church system with elected clergy. There were 83 bishops, one for each department. The French monarchy were in charge of making laws and regulations pertaining to the church. Many opposed.
  • The king accepts the new constitution

    The king accepted the constitutionn made by the clergy.
  • The Royal Escape

    King Louis XVI of France, along with his wife Marie Antoinette decided to escape their embarassing situation in Paris. Louis agreed. He disguised himself with his family. However, their disguises were revealed. They were returned back to Paris, this time confined to the Tuileries Palace. They were seen as traitors to the revolution.Reactions within France, as well as outside of France spurred about the king. Louis received threats from abroad.
  • Declaration of Pilnitz

    In response to Louis XVI’s capture the king of Prussia and the emperor of Austria (Marie Antoinette's brother), issued this. They warned that in order to protect the Fench monarchy, they will intervene if needed. This made French Revolutionaries make cautious actions. Subsequently, revolutionaries saw this and prepared for war.
  • The Constitution of 1791

    It abolished many “institutions which were injurious to liberty and equality of rights." It replaced the absolute mocarchy in France by a limited monarchy. Also, a new legislative Assembly was in charge of making laws, collecting taxes, and deciding on affairs concerning war and peace. Male citizens that payed taxes were allowed to elcet the lawmakers. Old provinces were replaced. It was important because it reflected the Enlightenment goals, ensuring equality before the law for all citizens.
  • The Legislative Assembly meets

    The Legislative Assembly facoured the abolition of the Monarchy and the establishment of a Republic.
  • France declares war on Austria

    Although the French fared poorly at first, the armies became more successful as the war progressed.
  • Jacobins clubs invaded the Tuileries

    Supported Execution of Louis XVI and during the Terroir turned theprovinces into mightmares pf fear and destruction as members took it upon themselves to be aganets of the Terror and sent thousands to the guilotine
  • Tuileries palace is stormed

    Louis the XVI takes refuge with the Legislative Assembly.
  • Danton's speech gave the world new sight

    Paris was threathen by foreign armies, people were petrified and Daton implored the mto be "ever bolder".
  • Creation of National Convention

    The National Convention was elected as a legislative body by radicals. It held executive power in France. The Convention voted to abolish the monarchy and declare France a republic. The Jacobins controlled the convention. They wanted to dissolve old order. They took lands and titles away that belonged to the nobility.
  • Monarchy is abolished

    The Legislative Assembly votes to abolish the monarchy and establish the First Republic. The measure came one year after King Louis XVI reluctantly approved a new constitution that stripped him of much of his power.
  • Execution of a Monarch

    The National Convention held Louis XVI on trial for being a traitor to France. The king was then sentenced to death by a single vote. His words before he was killed were ignored as the crowd and drums masked them. He was sent to the guillotine, where he was beheaded. This was significant because people were now making decisions and held the power.
  • Louis XVI is executed

    France declared war on Austria, Holland and England because of the hostility of the foreign monarchs, clergy and the nobles, and the fear that the émigré could spread the republican ideas outside France.
  • France declares war on Great Britain

    France declared war on Austria, Holland and England because of the hostility of the foreign monarchs, clergy and the nobles, and the fear that the émigré could spread the republican ideas outside France.
  • Committee of Public Safety is formed

    Originally consisting of nine members of the convention, it was formed as an administrative body to supervise and expedite the work of the executive bodies of the convention and of the government ministers appointed by the convention.
  • Constitution of 1793 is adopted

    The Constitution was based on the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen of 1789, to which it added several rights, proclaiming the superiority of popular sovereignty over national sovereignty, and various economic and social rights, such as the right of association, right to work and public assistance, and the right to public education.
  • The Reign of Terror

    Many executions took place against the enemies of the revolution. People who went against the ideas of the Revolution were instantly put in prison and killed. If any ordinary person said someting counter-revolutionary, they would end up at the guillotine, a blade that beheaded people. 40,000 died during this time, sparking a terror. Nobles and clergy, middle-class citizens, and peasants were killed. Robespierre was behind the Reign of Terror. He stated terror would lead to the Republic of Virtue
  • Queen Marie Antoinette is executed

    Marie Antoinette was the French Queen during the French Revolution. She was ultamatley beheaded because she did not look out for the rights of her people. She sat back and watched when her people were starving.
  • The Cult of Reason is proclaimed.

    The Cult of Reason was an attempt to organize a civic religion without gods, a kind of atheism, to replace Christianity during the French Revolution. Centered on humanity rather than divinity, the goal of the Cult of Reason was the perfection of mankind through the pursuit of truth and freedom.
  • The revolutionary calendar is adopted

    A year consists of 365 or 366 days, divided into 12 months of 30 days each, followed by 5 or 6 additional days. The months were:
  • Execution of the Hebertist leaders of the sans-culottes

    The leaders were killed because of thier differing political and religious beliefs.
  • The Fall of Robespierre

    The Fall of Robespierre began on March 30, 1794 when he sent his fellow citizens and friends Danton and Desmoulins to the guillotine for believing in something that Robespierre did not.
  • Execution of Danton

    Danton displayed such feelings before the revolutionary tribunal, that his enemies feared he would gain the crowd's favor.
  • Cult of the Supreme Being proclaimed

    The Cult of the Supreme Being was a form of deism established in France by Maximilien Robespierre during the French Revolution. It was intended to become the state religion of the new French Republic.
  • Law of 22 Prairial

    Allowed the Revolutionary Tribunal to declare the death penalty without need for a witness.
  • Robespierre is executed

    He was killed because he went too far with his revolutionary ideas. He killed thousands of people, sending them to the guillotine, just because they still believed in the monarchial system Maximilien Robespierre wanted to get rid of so desperately. He killed everybody that thought differently than him.
  • Constitution of 1795

    French constitution established during the French Revolution. This constitution was ratified by the National Convention. This constitution established the Directory. It also concentrated on governmental restructuring during this time period. "The Directory would have no legislative power, it would have the authority to appoint people to fill the other positions within the government."
  • The Directory

    The Constitution of 1795 established this five-man Directory and a two-house legislature elected by male citizens of property. It faced dissatisfaction. The leaders did not always succeed in solving problems. The Directory helped silence riots, like the san-culottes with increasing bread prices. They made a mistake when they turned to Napoleon Bonaparte for help in advancing their ideas when he ended up becoming ruler of France.
  • Treaty of Campo Formio

    Stabalized France still as a European power.
  • Napoleon becomes Consulate

    Napolean had demonstrated made successes early on in his life. His military career was prevelant when he drove out British forces out of the French port of Toulon and when he won victories against Austrians. His successes made him ambitious. He became popular in France as a hero. He became a political leader, and installed a Coup d'Etat. He later overthrew a Directory and set up a Consulate. He then took up a title of First Consul for life.
  • Constitution of the Year Vill

    Made Napoleon the leader of France without question and backed him up with his Consulate
  • Concordat of 1801

    An agreement between Napoleon and Pope Pius VII that strengthened the Roman Catholic Church as the superior church in France. Napoleon was making peace with the Catholic church, once an enemy of the Revolution. The church was also made in favor of the state, but also recognized religious freedom for catholics. This allowed him to win favor with Catholics, and peasantry.
  • Constitution of the Year X

    Established Napoleon as First Consul for life.
    Pretty much made him Supreme Power of France.
  • Organice Articles

    Made France the official "protectors" of the Papacy.
    Outlawed the public practice of religions in France besides Roman Christianity.
  • The Coronation of an Emperor- Napoleon

    Napolean had gained much power now to seize the title Emperor of the French. Napoleon held plebiscites to vote for in favor of his strong leadership. He promised to bring "order and stablilty." He invited the pope to Notre Dame cathedral in Paris for his coronation. Napoleon take the crown from the pope and places it on his head. He shows he wants to be the most powerful in Europe. He knew people supported him on his rise to power.
  • Battle of Trafalgar

    The Battle of Trafalgar was fought off of Cape Trafalgar on the Spanish coasts. Napoleon and his French army decided to invade Britain. Admiral Nelson tried to stop him. When they all met, Nelson's Royal Navy had 27 ships while the Spanish and French had 33 vessels. The British captured and destroyed most of their vessels. This was a mjor victory for Britain.
  • The Battle of Austerlitz

    This is known as one of Napoleon's greatest victories. The battle took place near Austerlitz. Napoleon received threats from both Russia and Austria, so he abandoned his ambitions to invade England. Napoleon told his enemies he wanted a truce, since, his army was weak, however, this was his plan to join with his allies. The armies of Napoleon's enemies, Russia and Austria were destroyed.
  • Invasion of Spain/ Peninsular War (Iberian)

    France had dominated most of Europe by now. Napoleon replaced the king of Spain with his brother, Joseph Bonsparte. Napoleon decided to invade Portugal because they did not pay any attention to the Continental System. So, he moved troops through Spain in order to invade. However, many Spaniards were angered by the replacement of their former king. French forces fought against the resistance, however, Spanish guerilla warfare killed a lot of the French forces. Britain helped Spain defeat France.
  • Invasion of Russia (3rd Mistrake)

    His Russian ally was not agreeing with his Continental System, so he made the decision to invade Russia, a mistake. He led many of his troops, the Grande Armee, into Russia. However, the Russians had a tactic of schorched-earth-policy that they used, in which the Russians burned everything as they moved East, leaving nothing for the French. Napoleon captured Moscow, but it was also destroyed. The weather was an element that did not help. The winter Killed thousands of his army. He was defeated.
  • Exile to Elba

    The new alliance of Russia, Britain, Austria, and Prussia went against weak France. Napoleon was forced to step down from power as his enemies confined France. The winners exiled him to an island in the Mediterranean Sea called, Elba.
  • Congress of Vienna

    Diplomats sat down at the Congress of Vienna to restore Europe's stability after the Napoleonic and Revolutionary Wars. The diplomats dined at parties, however, spied were paid to seek information of what people were saying. Tha main goal of the decsion makers was to establish a balance of power and protect the system of monarchs. This would help create peace. Balance of power took place when map of Europe were redrawn.
  • A hundred Day's

    Napoleon escaped his exile on Elba with his intentions of ruling France again when Louis XVIII was renewed as king. Napoleon was successful in his triumphant advance. However, the allies resetablished their troops. Opposing armies met near the town of Waterloo in Belgium. The British and the Prussians managed to defeat Napoleon. Napoloean was once again exiled, but this time to St. Helena.
  • Battle of Waterloo

    This battle took place in Belgium near the town of Waterloo. The United Kingdom, Russia, Austria, and Prussia organized their armies to defeat a French army under the control of Napoleon, when Napoleon wanted to be emperor again. This defeat ended Napoleon's rule as Emperor of the French and exiled him again, this time to an island called, St. Helena.