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Major differences between French law before the French Revolution and French law after the French Revolution

Essay 2014 23 Pages

Law - Comparative Legal Systems, Comparative Law

Excerpt

Content

List of abbreviations

A. Assessment

I. Introduction
1. Function of Absolutism
2. The state theory
3. Civil institutions and achievements
4. Class structure of the stands

II. Pre- and revolutionary situation
1. Demands from the French Revolution
2. Political offensive of the Third Estate
3. Forces and phases of the French Revolution
3.1 The storm of the Bastille and the first revolution chapter
3.2 Reforms and the declaration of human rights
3.3 The second chapter of the French revolution
3.4 The third chapter of the French revolution
3.5 The fourth chapter of the French revolution

III. The situation after the French revolution
1. Napoleons’ “coup d'etat”
2. Napoleons’ act on the legislation and its influence

B. Conclusion

Attachment 1: Constitution of 1791

Attachment 2: Constitution of 1793

Attachment 3: Constitution of 1795

List of references
Bibliography
Hyperlinks

List of Figure

List of abbreviations

illustration not visible in this excerpt

A. Assessment

What are the major differences between French law before the French Revolution and French law after the French Revolution?

I. Introduction

The topic of this essay is, to point out what are the major differences between French law before and after the French Revolution. According to the limit of words there will be a short overview of the time regarding to the Absolutism. Therefore there will be some explanations about the function of Absolutism, the state theory, the rights for citizens according to that time as well as an overview about the situation after the French revolution- especially the Code Napoleon. Attached there are some figures to the separation of power from the Absolutism to the time from Napoleon to the First Restoration in 1814 (Bourbon Restoration), the July Monarchy and the present separation of power on the French national level.

1. Function of Absolutism

The “new time state” was established in the end of the middle ages.[1] In the 16th and 17th century the state regime went into a monarchy dictatorship, which is titled as an absolute monarchy - the Absolutism.[2] The Absolutism is the last and highest form of the feudal state system.[3] The aristocracy and the opposition haven’t got much power (in the mean of direct power and influence) in this system.[4] In the political way the aristocracy and the opposition are pushing back by the Absolutism system.[5] Therefore the absolute monarchy safe there social privilege stand in the feudal class as a whole, which is also guaranteed by his unlimited power of the monarch.[6] This means that the monarch has got the legislative and executive power. In this case he has got also the judicative power as the highest judge, which is supported by an official authority, the finance authority, the military and the state church.[7] “L'État c'est moi”- I am the state[8] is a famous sentence from Louis XIV of France and demonstrates the understanding of the state essentially at that time.

To support these institutions there were a static increased taxation and fiscal system with a state household and an economical state policy (so called Mercantilism) established.[9] According to the absolutism there is a historical functional contradiction which characterises from its transition period.[10] On the one hand it protected mainly the feudal class with its rulings[11] and on the other hand the absolutism protected and supported also objectively the increasing capitalism in a national framework[12] The centralisation of power is a typical phenomena in that time area for countries which had got social economic evolution with production development.[13] Typical for the relationships among the classes in the absolutism is that between the absolutism and the aristocracy were a steady class-congruent and also a difference opinion meanwhile.[14] Between the absolutism and the bourgeoisie[15] existed a harmonizing in interests temporarily by steadily difference attitudes.[16] The figure 1 shows the Relationships among the classes in the absolutism.

illustration not visible in this excerpt

Figure 1: Relationships among the classes in the absolutism.[17]

The classical absolutism established only in France because every characteristic and its functions were given.[18]

2. The state theory

A new terrestrial state teaching was developed by Niccolò Machiavelli,[19] Jean Bodin[20] and Thomas Hobbes.[21] Hugo Grotius thought it was necessary to develop the theory of ius gentium[22] and to implement it practically.[23] Grotius also demanded mare liberum,[24] which corresponds with the law of the free competition in the early time of capitalism development.[25]

3. Civil institutions and achievements

At the best way the civil power is pronounced in the form of government by a Republic.[26] It is also distinctive by a parliamentary representation system.[27] Particularly in France some trailblazing constitution fights took place.[28] Some more developments took place like the strong limited suffrage, the fundamental rights of freedom for citizens and the system of laws by the Code Napoléon.[29] Also political parties and associations were founded in the form of conservatives, librarian and the petty bourgeois democratic and the press.[30] Moreover a modern monetary and fiscal system, as well as a free trade policy or the support of the upcoming industry via protectionism was established.[31] The standardization of weights and measures (metric) strengthen the economic foundations of the new society.[32] In the Bourgeoisie time the liberalism was stabilized and the civil democracy is primarily a result of the fights of the radical petty bourgeoisie in the alliance with masses.[33] According to this time a consequence was the Jacobin Constitution from 1793.[34] After 1849 the petty bourgeoisie lost its historical role as its bases a vanguard of the bourgeois democracy, the working class took the defence of progressive bourgeois in acquisition.[35]

4. Class structure of the stands

In addition of tax exemption the aristocracy had got supplementary rights like local jurisdiction, the right to carry weapons, the occupation of diplomatically positions, the right to hunt, to serve in the state and military[36] sector.[37] The majority of the nation is in the third stand (which is titled as “Tiers État”), which includes the intellectuals,[38] the bourgeoisie and the farmers.[39] The “Tiers Etat” is largely political without rights or completely with no rights.[40] The Bourgeoisie had got individual fractions, which were the great bourgeoisie, the middle bourgeoisie and the small bourgeoisie.[41] The great bourgeoisie includes the pensions bourgeoisie who linked closely to the ancient regime (with regional differences), the top of the trade bourgeoisie[42] and the finance bourgeoisie.[43] Another part of the bourgeoisie was the middle bourgeoisie.[44] The manufacturing bourgeoisie[45] and the mass of the trade bourgeoisie was the core of the middle bourgeoisie.[46]

[…]


[1] Compare to Genesis des Absolutismus, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.28.

[2] Loc. cit.

[3] Loc. cit.

[4] Loc. cit.

[5] Loc. cit.

[6] Loc. cit.

[7] Loc. cit.

[8] Compare to URL1.

[9] Compare to Genesis des Absolutismus, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.28.

[10] Loc. cit.

[11] These rulings are the origin accumulation of the capital and the extensive farmer movement.

[12] The protection of increasing capitalism in national framework was only supported until the level of the benefit

for the privileged aristocracy.

[13] Compare to Genesis des Absolutismus, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.29.

[14] Compare to Genesis des Absolutismus, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.29.

[15] The bourgeoisie describes a social class by their possession of ownership.

[16] Compare to Genesis des Absolutismus, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.29.

[17] Figure 1: Inspired by Genesis des Absolutismus, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.29

[18] Compare to Genesis des Absolutismus, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.29.

[19] Niccolò Machiavelli was a politician, humanist and diplomat during the Renaissance.

[20] Jean Bodin was a philosopher and jurist as well as member of the Parlement of Paris.

[21] Thomas Hobbes was a political philosopher from 5th April 1588 to 4th December 1679.

[22] Ius gentium means international law.

[23] Compare to Genesis des Absolutismus, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.30.

[24] Mare liberum revenues the liberty of the sea for all states and people.

[25] Compare to Genesis des Absolutismus, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.30.

[26] Compare to Genesis des Absolutismus, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.215.

[27] Loc. cit.

[28] Loc. cit.

[29] Loc. cit.

[30] Loc. cit.

[31] Loc. cit.

[32] Loc. cit.

[33] Loc. cit.

[34] Loc. cit.

[35] Loc. cit.

[36] The aristocracy had got eminence by officer posts in the military sector.

[37] Compare to Epoche der Bourgeoisie, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.234.

[38] Here intellectual mean writers, adovacts, doctors.

[39] Compare to Epoche der Bourgeoisie, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.234.

[40] Loc. cit.

[41] Loc. cit.

[42] To the trade bourgeoisie belonged the large merchants, overseas dealers and ship owners.

[43] To the finance bourgeoisie belonged the military suppliers, bankers, the tax leases.

[44] Compare to Epoche der Bourgeoisie, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.234.

[45] Except of the centralized manufacturing owners.

[46] Compare to Epoche der Bourgeoisie, in Allgemeine Geschichte der Neuzeit, p.234.

Details

Pages
23
Year
2014
ISBN (eBook)
9783656594376
ISBN (Book)
9783656594321
File size
758 KB
Language
English
Catalog Number
v268226
Institution / College
University Pierre-Mendès-France – Faculté de droit Grenoble
Grade
1,7
Tags
Code Napoleon Frankreich Geschichte Europa Historie Rechtsgeschichte französische

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Title: Major differences between French law before the French  Revolution and French law after the French Revolution