The July Revolution in France 1830

[ 1830 ]

[also French Revolution of 1830]

An inept ruler, King Charles X (1757-1836) inspired resentment in the French middle class and its press, especially against ultra-royalist advisers; when he directed his reactionary favorite Jules de Polignac (1780-1847) to form a new ministry, the Chamber of Deputies hotly objected. Charles' angry dismissal of the chamber (1829) turned an attempt to curb a hated functionary into the total collapse of the regime. An 1830 French election revealed even greater opposition in the chamber, and Charles again dismissed it as he and Polignac published the "July Ordinances," which established strong press controls and reduced the electorate. As usual, the Parisians revolted and blockaded the streets on July 27, 1830; among those manning the barricades were army units and former members of the National Guard disbanded in 1827. Charles acted too late in annulling the new ordinances and dismissing Polignac (July 30, 1830); the minister was arrested and condemned to life imprisonment and later (1836) amnestied. Charles fled, then abdicated in favor of a grandson; the rebels, divided into republicans favoring the Marquis de Lafayette (1757-1834) and monarchists desiring the conservative Duke of Orleans, Louis-Philippe (1773-1850), argued among themselves until the dismissed bourgeois legislature declared the throne vacant and proclaimed Louis-Philippe king. His ineptness and rightist actions led his "July Monarchy" to the French revolution of 1848 and the Second Republic.

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