Bastille day

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Bastille Day - French Independence Day - 14 July - Le Quatorze juillet

The French national holiday commemorates the storming of the Bastille, which took place on 14 July 1789 and marked the beginning of the French Revolution.

The Bastille was a prison and a symbol of the absolute and arbitrary power of Louis the 16th's Ancient Regime. By capturing this symbol, the people signaled that theking's power was no longer absolute: power should be based on the Nation and be limited by a separation of powers.

|Etymology - Bastille |  |Although the Bastille only held seven prisoners at the time of |
|Bastille is an alternate spelling of bastide(fortification), from |  |its capture, the storming of the prison was a symbol of liberty|
|theProvençal wordbastida (built). There's also a | |and the fight against oppression for all French citizens; like |
|verb:embastiller (to establish troops in a prison). | |the Tricolore flag, it symbolized the Republic's three |
| | |ideals: Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity for all French|
| | |citizens. |
|It marked the end of absolute monarchy, the birth of the sovereign Nation, and, eventually, the creation of the (First) Republic, in|
|Bastille Day was declared the French national holiday on 6 July 1880,|  |Marseillaise |
|on Benjamin Raspail's recommendation, when the new Republic was |  |La Marseillaise was written in 1792 and declared the French |
|firmly entrenched. Bastille Day has such a strong signification for | |national anthem in 1795. Read andlisten to the words. |
|the French because the holiday symbolizes the birth of the Republic. | | |
|As in the US, where the signing of the Declaration of Independence signaled the start of the American Revolution, in France the |
|storming of the Bastille began the Great Revolution. In both countries, the national holiday thussymbolizes the beginning of a new |
|form of government. |
|On the one-year anniversary of the fall of the Bastille, delegates from every region of France proclaimed their allegiance to a |
|single national community during the Fête de la Fédération in Paris - the first time inhistory that a people had claimed their |
|right to self-determination. |
|  |
|The French Revolution|
| |
|The French Revolution had numerous causes which are greatly simplified and summarized here: |
|Parliament wanted the king to share his absolute powers with anoligarchic parliament. |
|Priests and other low-level religious figures wanted more money. |
|Nobles also wanted to share some of the king's power. |
|The middle class wanted the right to own land and to vote....
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