Timeline | Before 1800 to After 1930 | FRANCE | POLITICAL CONTEXT

Date

Country | Theme | Description

1814

France | Political Context

Abdication of Napoleon I on 6 April sees the end of the First French Empire (1804–14).

1814 - 1815

France | Political Context

First Restoration: the return of the monarchy, referred to as the Bourbon Restoration. Louis XVIII (brother of Louis XVI) facilitated this by accepting a return to the monarchy by means of the Charter of 1814. This Charter combined the more moderate ideas of the Revolution with certain monarchist traditions.

1815

France | Political Context

March–July, the Cent Jours (Hundred Days) between which Napoleon I returns to power and then finally abdicates after defeat at Waterloo.

1815 - 1830

France | Political Context

Second Restoration: the reign of Louis XVIII and his brother Charles X. France experiences an economic boom (i.e. the development of the railways), but discontent grows over the king’s authoritarian policies.

1830

France | Political Context

June–July: the invasion of Algiers.

1830

France | Political Context

The July Monarchy: Louis-Philippe becomes “Citizen-King”, and economic growth is joined by increased poverty.

1830

France | Political Context

27–29 July: the Second French Revolution of July 1830 results in the fall of Charles X, who is succeeded by his cousin Louis-Philippe.

1848

France | Political Context

Revolution of February 1848: Louis-Philippe abdicates and the Republic is proclaimed.

1848 - 1852

France | Political Context

During the Second Republic a number of social reforms take place, including universal male suffrage and the abolition of slavery. In December 1848 Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte (grand-nephew of Napoleon I) takes over as president of the Republic and reverts to a more conservative political position. He sets up an authoritarian regime by coup d'état (December 1851), and declares himself emperor in 1852.

1852 - 1870

France | Political Context

After an authoritarian period (1852–60), during which time freedoms are severely restricted and political opponents are forced into exile, the Second Empire is declared and the political climate becomes more liberal and the economy grows.
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