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French Social Class System

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Ronak M

on 3 March 2014

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Transcript of French Social Class System

French Social Class System (1700-1800's)
First Estate- Clergy
Second Estate- Nobles
Third Estate- Commoners
Determined how hard people worked, lived, interacted and traveled
First Estate- Clergy
Priests, who ran Catholic Church and aspects of France
Kept registers of birth, death, and marriage
Power to levy 10% tax on people
Highest on social ladder (powerful)
.5% of population and owned 10% of land
Not required to pay taxes
Didn't want to change anything in France unless they would be gaining more power
Second Estate- Nobles
Inherited money
Included members of the Royal family, except for the King
Special privileges like wearing swords and hunting
Didn't have to pay taxes
Collected taxes from third estate
1.5% of population
Held top jobs in government, army, and courts
Didn't want anything to change unless they would be gaining more power
Third Estate- Commoners
From peasant farmers to the bourgeoisie (business middle class)
98% of population and had none of the rights and privileges of the other 2
Wanted a more equal distribution of wealth and power
Required to pay taxes
Top- Bourgeoisie
- bankers, merchants,
lawyers, doctors, etc.
Middle-Peasants (90% class)
Bottom- City Workers
-overworked and underpaid; support revolution

Three Social Classes/Estates Before Revolution
Middle class
Considered equal with and part of lowest (third estate)
Grew in size and wealth, but never gained respect or rights that they deserved
Because they worked for money instead of inheriting it, they were looked down upon
Began to hate aristocrats which cause tension
All three estates were unhappy with absolutism
- King Louis XVI spent more than the country made, not only on himself but wars like the American Revolution
Third estate was "The Nation" but had the least amount of rights and privileges
Wealth gap between the estates
Third estate was the poorest yet they were the only estate to be taxed
When voting, each estate possessed one vote which was unfair to the third estate because they had most people and the first two estates usually agreed, so their vote didn't matter
Conflicts/Causes of Revolution
Tax system was abolished giving common people financial and social relief
Power of clergy over financial issues was abolished
Priests transformed into state employees
Fixed wages, which allowed workers to have a guaranteed earning potential
Free education, despite social class, economic status, and sex
Effects of the Revolution
old aristocracy and new wealthy mixed to form
- maintained control over political system and progress
- educated at colleges and universities
- attended concerts and operas fashionably attired
- Cared for by female relatives, servants, and nannies
Upper Class After Revolution
Grew from industrial and commercial capitalists
Substantial and dominant
Used mental skills rather than hard labor
Bankers, doctors, dentists, engineers, etc.
- married women of higher social and economic status to gain wealth
- demanded success and achievement from children
- Primary protectors and teachers were their mothers

Middle Class After Revolution
rural peasants and laborers
Used physical labor rather than mental
-higher rates of mortality because of high incidence of accidents in workshops, construction, etc.
- peasants, seamstresses, shopkeepers, and maids
-treated like adults and encouraged to become independent as soon as possible
Lower Class After Revolution
Works Cited
"The French Revolution and Napoleon." History Haven. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Mar. 2014. <http://www.historyhaven.com/worldhistory/French_Revolution_Napoleon.htm>.
"The French Revolution 1789-1815." SFP Online. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Mar. 2014. <http://www.sfponline.org/Uploads/91/19-1uploadtowebsite.pdf>.
"French Social Classes during the Revolution." Computer Database /Gale. Gale Resources, n.d. Web. 2 Mar. 2014. <http://find.galegroup.com/srcx/retrieve.do?sgHitCountType=None&sort=Relevance&prodId=DC&tabID=T001&subjectParam=Locale%2528en%252C%252C%2529%253AFQE%253D%2528su%252CNone%252C17%2529french%2Brevolution%253AAnd%253ALQE%253D%2528CL%252CNone%252C12%2529Intermediate%2524&resultListType=RESULT_LIST&searchId=R3&displaySubject=&searchType=BasicSearchForm&currentPosition=2&qrySerId=Locale%28en%2C%2C%29%3AFQE%3D%28SU%2CNone%2C17%29french+revolution%3AAnd%3ALQE%3D%28CL%2CNone%2C12%29Intermediate%24&subjectAction=DISPLAY_SUBJECTS&inPS=true&userGroupName=glas20763&sgCurrentPosition=0&contentSet=GSRC&docId=EJ2105230016&docType=GSRC>.
"The Three Estates Information Sheet." UCL Museums and Collection. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Mar. 2014. <http://www.ucl.ac.uk/museums/learning-resources/secondary-schools/downloadable-lessons/three-estates-student-sheets.pdf>.
"Upper Class." Social Classes Paris in the Nineteenth Century. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Mar. 2014. <http://gallery.sjsu.edu/paris/social_classes/lower/children.html>.
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