Ancien Regime (Awesome Stuff from Step and Ben)


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  • Ancien Regime
    • King
      • Absolute monarchy (In theory)
      • Lettere De Cachet (King can get anyone arrested without trial)
      • Divine right
      • Louis XVI
      • HOWEVER: Not a despot/absolute monarch
        • Louis had to consult with advisors or government
          • Most of advisors come from elite section of society.
      • VERY UNPOPULAR (Royal family spends a lot of money while country is starving)
    • Taxation System
      • Chaotic and inefficient.
        • Direct taxes: Type of a poll tax.
          • Privileged classes exempt. additional adhoc system of exemptions (UNFAIR)
        • Indirect taxes: levied on goods.
        • Tax collection was through Tax Forming corruption and wastage were vast.
          • Treasury did not receive all tax paid
      • Taxes: 1) 27% to the king (taille and gabelle) 2) 10 % to feudal dues to lord of manor (the nobility) 3) 8% to the church through the tithes.
    • Estate System: type of feudal system.
      • FIRST ESTATE: Clergy: royal family, bishops, parish priests etc. (Upper clergy - rich/lower clergy poor) DID NOT HAVE TO PAY TAX
        • Church was unpopular: because of pluralism and absenteeism/ exemption from taxes/power over the people.
      • SECOND ESTATE: Nobility: Nobility of the robe & Nobility of the sword, hereditary titles, different levels of wealth. Earned around 5th of the land. Not all of them were exceptionally wealthy.
        • Nobility was unpopular: tax exemptions/earned money of the peasants through their landed estates.
      • THIRD ESTATE: Everyone else: 98% of the population- 26 million people. made up of the bourgeoisie, urban workers and peasants. HAD TO PAY TAXES
        • Some of the bourgeoisie earned more than the nobility but weren't tax exempt (PERSONAL AMBITION)
    • Parliaments
      • There are 13 Parliaments across France, with the largest being in Paris.They discussed new laws but had to agree to them.
        • 1) groups of noblemen 2) could send grievances to the King 3) Paid to be in Parliament 4)Had to apply to the king
  • Direct taxes: Type of a poll tax.
    • Privileged classes exempt. additional adhoc system of exemptions (UNFAIR)


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