History French Revolution Church reforms

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  • Civil Constitution of the Clergy
    • Reforms for the Church
      • Oath of Loyalty
        • 27th November 1790 decreed the clergy must take an oath to the constitution
          • Refractory and non jurying priests disagreed with the oath
      • Sale of Church Land
        • Provide money for the State before new taxation system
        • Clergy would support new regime- depedent on it for their wages
        • People who bought Church land would be likely to oppose a restoration of the ancien regime- lose their lands to the Church
        • Government issued bonds- assignats which public could buy/use for Crown lands
      • Buying Church land
        • 25% of Church land sold by 1799
          • Peasants bought 52%
            • Peasant smallholders increased by a million between 1789 and 1810
          • Bourgeoisie 48%
        • SUCCESS: Quick sales, gave the new system immediate support by creating a vested interest and peasants able to buy large plots
          • FAILURE: Inflation lost 99% of value and it brought the Bourgeoisie up
      • Tithes, annates and pluralism abolished
      • End of priviliges
    • Approved on 12th July 1790
    • Reformed the Catholic Church in France.
      • Dioceses were to coincide with departments, meaning the number of bishoprics would be reduced from 135 to 83.
      • KEY TERMS of the Civil Constitution of the Clergy
        • Each department form a single diocese
        • No recognition of a bishop not approved by French State
        • Priests and bishops to be elected
          • Elections by ballot, and by absolute majority
          • Priests paid by State
        • No absenteeism by priests or bishops (away from his diocese more than 15 days)
  • Buying Church land
    • 25% of Church land sold by 1799
      • Peasants bought 52%
        • Peasant smallholders increased by a million between 1789 and 1810
      • Bourgeoisie 48%
    • SUCCESS: Quick sales, gave the new system immediate support by creating a vested interest and peasants able to buy large plots
      • FAILURE: Inflation lost 99% of value and it brought the Bourgeoisie up

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