On this page, you will find NCERT Class 9 History Chapter 1 Notes Pdf free download. CBSE Class 9 Social Science Notes History Chapter 1 SST The French Revolution will seemingly, help them to revise the important concepts in less time.
The French Revolution Class 9 Notes Social Science History Chapter 1
CBSE Class 9 History Chapter 1 Notes Understanding the Lesson
1. In 1774, Louis XVI of the Bourbon family of kings ascended the throne of France. Upon his accession the new king found an empty treasury. So the state was forced to increase taxes.
2. French society in the eighteenth century was divided into three estates, but only the members of the third estate had to pay taxes. The third estate was comprised of big businessmen, merchants, court officials, peasants and artisans. The members of the first two estates, that is, the clergy and the nobility, enjoyed certain privileges by birth.
3. The phenomenal increase in the population of France in 1789 led to a rapid increase in the demand for food grains. As a result the price of bread rose rapidly. It became difficult for the poor to keep pace with the rise in prices. The gap between the poor and the rich widened.
4. In the eighteenth century there emerged new social groups, termed the middle class. The people belonging to this class were educated and believed that no group in society should be privileged by birth. Rather, a person’s social position must depend on this merit.
5. Philosophers such as John Locke, Jean Jacques Rousseau and Montesquieu put forward the ideas of freedom and equal laws and opportunities for all. These philosophers refuted the doctrine of the divine and absolute right of the monarch.
6. At a time when general public was facing hard times, the news that Louis XVI planned to impose further taxes generated anger among them. They protested against the system of privileges. But as Louis XVI had to increase taxes, he called together an assembly of the Estates-General on 5 May 1789, to pass proposals for new taxes.
7. Voting in the Estates-General in the past had been conducted according to the principle that each estate had one vote. This time too Louis XVI was determined to continue the same practice. But the members of the third estate demanded that voting now be conducted by the assembly as a whole, where each member would have one vote. However, the king rejected their proposal which compelled them to walkout.
8. Meanwhile, the representatives of the third estate assembled in the grounds of Versailles on 20 June and declared themselves a National Assembly. They had drafted a constitution for France that would limit the powers of the monarch.
9. In the meantime the condition of the common mass in France worsened because of the bad harvest. Unaware of his subjects problem the king ordered troops to move into Paris on 4 July, the agitated crowed stormed and destroyed Bastille.
10. Louis XVI, could not suppress his revolting subjects and finally accorded recognition to the National Assembly and accepted the principle that his powers would from now on be checked by a constitution.
11. On the night of 4 August 1789, the Assembly passed a decree abolishing the feudal system of obligations and taxes. Members of the clergy too were forced to give up their privileges.
12. The National Assembly completed the draft of the constitution in 1791. Powers were now separated and assigned to different institutions-the legislature, executive and judiciary.
13. The constitution began with a Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen. Rights such as the right to life, freedom of speech, freedom of opinion, equality before law, were established as natural rights.
14. But one wrong step of Louis XVI worsened the situation in France. Although he had signed the constitution, he entered into secret negotiations with the king of Prussia. In the meantime, the National Assembly declared war against Prussia and Austria. Thousands of volunteers joined the army. They saw this as a war of the people against kings and aristocracies all over Europe.
15. Large sections of population were in favour of the continuation of revolution, as the constitution of 1791 gave political rights only to the richer sections of society. Political clubs came into existence. They wanted to plan their own forms of action. The most successful of these clubs was that of the Jacobins.
16. The members of the Jacobin club belonged mainly to the less prosperous sections of society. Their leader was Maximilian Robespierre.
17. In the summer of 1792 the Jacobins planned an insurrection of a large number of Parisians who were angered by the short supplies and high prices of food. On the morning of August 10 they stormed the Palace of the Tuileries, killed the king’s guards and held the king himself as hostage. Later, the Assembly imprisoned the royal family.
18. Louis XVI and his queen were sentenced to death in 1793. Thus, monarchy was abolished and France was made a republic. Then started the Reign of Terror in France under the leadership of Robespierre. But it could last for long. In July 1794, Robespierre was arrested and then sentenced to death.
19. The fall of the Jacobin government allowed the wealthier middle classes to seize power. But political instability continued which paved the way for the rise of Napoleon Bonaparte who crowned himself Emperor of France in 1804. He was finally defeated at Waterloo in 1815.
20. The Ideas of liberty and democratic rights were the most important legacy of the French Revolution for the peoples of the world during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
The French Revolution Class 9 CBSE Notes Important Terms
Livre: Unit of currency in the France, discontinued in 1794.
Clergy: Group of persons invested with special functions in the church.
Tithe: A tax levied by the church, comprising on tenth of the agricultural produce.
Taille: Tax to be paid directly to the state.
Subsistence: An extreme situation where the basic means of livelihood are endangered.
Chateau: (PI. chateaux)-Castle or stately residence belonging to a king or a nobleman.
Manor: An estate consisting of the lord’s lands and his mansion.
Treason: Betrayal of one’s country or government.
Guillotine: A device consisting of two poles and a blade with which a person is beheaded.
Negroes: A term used for the indigenous people of Africa south of the Sahara.
Emancipation: The act of freeing.
Marseillaise: The national anthem of France.
Sans-culottes: Those without knee-breeches.
Notes of History Class 9 Chapter 1 Time Period
1774: Louis XVI became the king of France.
1789: The Bastille was stormed.
1791: A constitution was framed to limit the power of the king.
1792-93: France became a republic, the king was beheaded.
1804: Napoleon became the emperor of France.
1815: Napoleon was defeated at Waterloo.