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The Kingdom of France ( fro, Reaume de France; frm, Royaulme de France; french: link=yes, Royaume de France) is the historiographical name or
umbrella term In linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language, meaning that it is a comprehensive, systematic, objective, and precise study of language. Linguistics encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the m ...
given to various political entities of
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a List of transcontinental countries, transcontinental country spanning Western Europe and Overseas France, overseas regions and territories in the Ame ...

France
in the
medieval In the history of Europe The history of Europe concerns itself with the discovery and collection, the study, organization and presentation and the interpretation of past events and affairs of the people of Europe since the beginning of ...
and
early modern The early modern period of modern history Human history, or world history, is the narrative of 's past. It is understood through , , , and , and since the , from and s. Humanity's written history was preceded by its , beginning with ...
period. It was among the most powerful states in Europe and a great power from the
High Middle Ages The High Middle Ages, or High Medieval Period, was the period Period may refer to: Common uses * Era, a length or span of time * Full stop (or period), a punctuation mark Arts, entertainment, and media * Period (music), a concept in musical c ...
onward. It was also an early
colonial power Colonialism is a practice or policy of control by one people or power over other people or areas, often by establishing colonies In political science, a colony is a territory subject to a form of foreign rule. Though dominated by the foreign c ...
, with possessions around the world. France originated as
West Francia In medieval history, West Francia (Medieval Latin: ) or the Kingdom of the West Franks () refers to the western part of the Francia, Frankish Empire established by Charlemagne. It represents the earliest stage of the Kingdom of France, lasting fro ...
(''Francia Occidentalis''), the western half of the
Carolingian Empire The Carolingian Empire (800–888) was a large Frankish Frankish may refer to: * Franks The Franks ( la, Franci or ) were a group of Germanic peoples The historical Germanic peoples (from lat, Germani) are a category of ancient nort ...
, with the
Treaty of Verdun The Treaty of Verdun, signed on 10 August 843, was the first of the treaties that divided the Carolingian Empire The Carolingian Empire (800–888) was a large Franks, Frankish-dominated empire in western and central Europe during the early Mi ...

Treaty of Verdun
(843). A branch of the Carolingian dynasty continued to rule until 987, when
Hugh Capet Hugh Capet (; french: Hugues Capet ; c. 939 – 14 October 996) was the from 987 to 996. He is the founder and first king from the . The son of the powerful duke and his wife , he was elected as the successor of the last king, . Hugh was des ...
was elected king and founded the
Capetian dynasty The Capetian dynasty (), also known as the House of France The term House of France refers to the branch of the Capetian dynasty which provided the Kings of France following the election of Hugh Capet. The House of France consists of a num ...
. The territory remained known as ''Francia'' and its ruler as ''rex Francorum'' ("king of the Franks") well into the
High Middle Ages The High Middle Ages, or High Medieval Period, was the period Period may refer to: Common uses * Era, a length or span of time * Full stop (or period), a punctuation mark Arts, entertainment, and media * Period (music), a concept in musical c ...
. The first king calling himself ''rex Francie'' ("King of France") was
Philip IIPhilip II may refer to: * Philip II of Macedon (382–336 BC) * Philip II (emperor) (238–249), Roman emperor * Philip II, Prince of Taranto (1329–1374) * Philip II, Duke of Burgundy (1342–1404) * Philip II, Duke of Savoy (1438-1497) * Philip ...

Philip II
, in 1190, and officially from 1204. From then, France was continuously ruled by the Capetians and their cadet lines—the Valois and
BourbonBourbon may refer to: Food and drink * Bourbon whiskey, an American whiskey made using a corn-based mash * Bourbon barrel aged beer, a type of beer aged in bourbon barrels * Bourbon biscuit, a chocolate sandwich biscuit * A beer produced by Brass ...

Bourbon
—until the monarchy was abolished in 1792 during the
French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) was a period of radical political and societal change in France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in Western Europe, consi ...

French Revolution
.
France in the Middle Ages The Kingdom of France The Kingdom of France ( fro, Reaume de France, frm, Royaulme de France, french: link=no, Royaume de France) was a medieval and early modern monarchy in Western Europe. It was among the most powerful states in Europe ...
was a de-centralised,
feudal Feudalism, also known as the feudal system, was the combination of the legal, economic, military, and cultural customs that flourished in Medieval Europe between the 9th and 15th centuries. Broadly defined, it was a way of structuring society ...
monarchy. In
Brittany Brittany (; french: link=no, Bretagne ; br, Breizh, or ; Gallo: ''Bertaèyn'' ) is a peninsula A peninsula ( la, paeninsula from ' "almost" and ' "island") is a landform surrounded by water on most of its border while being connected to ...
and
Catalonia Catalonia (; ca, Catalunya ; Aranese, Aranese Occitan: ''Catalonha'' ; es, Cataluña ) is an Autonomous communities of Spain, autonomous community in the northeastern corner of Spain, designated as a ''nationalities and regions of Spain, na ...
(now a part of Spain) the authority of the French king was barely felt.
Lorraine Lorraine , also , , ; Lorrain language, Lorrain: ''Louréne''; Lorraine Franconian: ''Lottringe''; german: Lothringen ; lb, Loutrengen; nl, Lotharingen is a cultural and historical region in northeastern France, now located in the Regions of ...
and
Provence Provence (, , , , ; oc, Provença or ''Prouvènço'' , ) is a geographical region and historical province of southeastern France, which extends from the left bank of the lower Rhône The Rhône ( , ; german: Rhone ; wae, Rotten ; it, R ...
were states of the
Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Romanum Imperium; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Western Western may refer to: Places *Western, Nebraska, a village in the US *Western, New York, a town i ...
and not yet a part of France. Initially, West Frankish kings were elected by the secular and ecclesiastic magnates, but the regular coronation of the eldest son of the reigning king during his father's lifetime established the principle of male primogeniture, which became codified in the
Salic law#REDIRECT Salic law The Salic law ( or ; la, Lex salica), or the was the ancient Salian Franks, Salian Frankish Civil law (legal system), civil law code compiled around AD 500 by the first Frankish King, Clovis I, Clovis. The written text is in La ...
. During the
Late Middle Ages The Late Middle Ages or Late Medieval Period was the period Period may refer to: Common uses * Era, a length or span of time * Full stop (or period), a punctuation mark Arts, entertainment, and media * Period (music), a concept in musical comp ...
, rivalry between the
Capetian Dynasty The Capetian dynasty (), also known as the House of France The term House of France refers to the branch of the Capetian dynasty which provided the Kings of France following the election of Hugh Capet. The House of France consists of a num ...
, rulers of the Kingdom of France and their vassals the
House of Plantagenet The House of Plantagenet () was a royal house A dynasty (, ) is a sequence of rulers from the same family,''Oxford English Dictionary'', "dynasty, ''n''." Oxford University Press Oxford University Press (OUP) is the university ...
, who also ruled the
Kingdom of England The Kingdom of England (Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or ...

Kingdom of England
as part of their so-called competing
Angevin Empire The Angevin Empire (; french: link=no, Empire Plantagenêt) describes the possessions of the Angevin kings of England The Angevins (; "from Anjou Anjou (, ; ; la, Andegavia) was a French province straddling the lower Loire River. Its cap ...

Angevin Empire
, resulted in many armed struggles. The most notorious of them all are the series of conflicts known as the
Hundred Years' War The Hundred Years’ War (french: link=yes, La guerre de Cent Ans; 1337–1453) was a series of armed conflicts between the kingdoms of and during the . It originated from disputed claims to the between the English and the French roy ...
(1337–1453) in which the
kings of England This list of kings and queens of the Kingdom of England The Kingdom of England was a sovereign state on the island of Great Britain from 12 July 927, when it emerged from various History of Anglo-Saxon England, Anglo-Saxon kingdoms, unti ...
laid claim to the French throne. Emerging victorious from said conflicts, France subsequently sought to extend its influence into Italy, but was defeated by
Spain , image_flag = Bandera de España.svg , image_coat = Escudo de España (mazonado).svg , national_motto = , national_anthem = , image_map = , map_caption = , image_map2 ...

Spain
and the
Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Romanum Imperium; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Western Western may refer to: Places *Western, Nebraska, a village in the US *Western, New York, a town i ...
in the ensuing
Italian Wars The Italian Wars, often referred to as the Great Wars of Italy and sometimes as the Habsburg–Valois Wars, were a long series of wars fought between 1494 and 1559 in Italy during the Renaissance. The Italian peninsula, economically advanced bu ...
(1494–1559). France in the early modern era was increasingly centralised; the French language began to displace other languages from official use, and the monarch expanded his absolute power, albeit in an administrative system (the ''
Ancien Régime The '' Storming of the Bastille'' on 14 July 1789, later taken to mark the end of the ''Ancien Régime''; watercolour by Jean-Pierre Houël The Ancien Régime (; ; literally "old rule"), also known as the Old Regime, was the political and soc ...
'') complicated by historic and regional irregularities in taxation, legal, judicial, and ecclesiastic divisions, and local prerogatives. Religiously France became divided between the Catholic majority and a Protestant minority, the
Huguenots The Huguenots ( , also , ) were a religious group of French French (french: français(e), link=no) may refer to: * Something of, from, or related to France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République fran ...
, which led to a series of civil wars, the
Wars of Religion A religious war or holy war ( la, bellum sacrum) is a war War is an intense armed conflict between states, government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a State (polit ...
(1562–1598). The Wars of Religion crippled France, but triumph over
Spain , image_flag = Bandera de España.svg , image_coat = Escudo de España (mazonado).svg , national_motto = , national_anthem = , image_map = , map_caption = , image_map2 ...

Spain
and the
Habsburg Monarchy Habsburg Monarchy (german: Habsburgermonarchie), or Danubian Monarchy (german: Donaumonarchie), or Habsburg Empire (german: Habsburgerreich) is a modern umbrella term In linguistics, hyponymy (from Greek language, Greek ὑπό, ''hupó'', "u ...

Habsburg Monarchy
in the
Thirty Years' War The Thirty Years' War was a conflict fought largely within the Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Romanum Imperium; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Western Europe, Weste ...
made France the most powerful nation on the continent once more. The kingdom became Europe's dominant cultural, political and military power in the 17th century under
Louis XIV , house = House of Bourbon, Bourbon , father = Louis XIII, Louis XIII of France , mother = Anne of Austria , birth_date = , birth_place = Château de Saint-Germain-en-Laye, Saint-Germain-en-Laye, Kingdom of France, F ...

Louis XIV
. In parallel, France developed its first colonial empire in Asia, Africa, and in the Americas. Colonial conflicts with
Great Britain Great Britain is an island in the North Atlantic Ocean off the northwest coast of continental Europe. With an area of , it is the largest of the British Isles, the List of European islands by area, largest European island, and the List of i ...

Great Britain
led to the loss of much of its
North American holdings
North American holdings
by 1763. French intervention in the American Revolutionary War helped secure the independence of the new United States of America but was costly and achieved little for France. The Kingdom of France adopted a written constitution in 1791, but the Kingdom was abolished a year later and replaced with the
First French Republic In the history of France, the First Republic (French: ''Première République''), officially the French Republic (''République française''), was founded on 22 September 1792 during the French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) refe ...
. The monarchy was restored by the other great powers in 1814 and lasted (except for the
Hundred Days The Hundred Days (french: les Cent-Jours ), also known as the War of the Seventh Coalition, marked the period between Napoleon Napoléon Bonaparte (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821) was a French military and political leader. He rose ...
in 1815) until the
French Revolution of 1848 The 1848 Revolution in the History of France, also known as the February Revolution (''révolution de février''), was the series of revolutionary events that ended the July Monarchy (1830–1848) and led to the creation of the French Second ...
.


Political history


West Francia

During the later years of the elderly
Charlemagne Charlemagne ( , ) or Charles the Great ( la, Carolus Magnus; 2 April 748 – 28 January 814) was King of the Franks The Franks—Germanic-speaking peoples that invaded the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century—were first led by i ...

Charlemagne
's rule, the
Viking Vikings—"pirate", non, víkingr is the modern name given to seafaring people primarily from Scandinavia Scandinavia; : ''Skadesi-suolu''/''Skađsuâl''. ( ) is a in , with strong historical, cultural, and linguistic ties. In ...

Viking
s made advances along the northern and western perimeters of the
Kingdom of the Franks Francia, also called the Kingdom of the Franks ( la, Regnum Francorum), Frankland, or Frankish Empire, was the largest post-Roman barbarian kingdom in Western Europe Western Europe is the region of Europe Europe is a continent ...
. After Charlemagne's death in 814 his heirs were incapable of maintaining political unity and the empire began to crumble. The
Treaty of Verdun The Treaty of Verdun, signed on 10 August 843, was the first of the treaties that divided the Carolingian Empire The Carolingian Empire (800–888) was a large Franks, Frankish-dominated empire in western and central Europe during the early Mi ...

Treaty of Verdun
of 843 divided the Carolingian Empire into three parts, with
Charles the Bald Charles the Bald (13 June 823 – 6 October 877) was a 9th-century king of West Francia (843–877), king of Italy (875–877) and emperor of the Holy Roman Empire (875–877). After a series of civil wars during the reign of his father, Loui ...

Charles the Bald
ruling over
West Francia In medieval history, West Francia (Medieval Latin: ) or the Kingdom of the West Franks () refers to the western part of the Francia, Frankish Empire established by Charlemagne. It represents the earliest stage of the Kingdom of France, lasting fro ...
, the nucleus of what would develop into the kingdom of France. Charles the Bald was also crowned
King of Lotharingia The rulers of Lorraine have held different posts under different governments over different regions, since its creation as the kingdom of Lotharingia by the Treaty of Prüm, in 855. The first rulers of the newly established region were kings of th ...
after the death of
Lothair II Lothair II (835 – ) was the king of Lotharingia Lotharingia (Latin: ''regnum Lotharii, regnum Lothariense, Lotharingia'', French: ''Lotharingie'', German: ''Reich des Lothar'', ''Lotharingien'', ''Mittelreich'') was a short-lived medieval s ...
in 869, but in the
Treaty of Meerssen The Treaty of Mersen or Meerssen Meerssen () ( li, Meersje) is a place and a Municipalities of the Netherlands, municipality in southeastern Netherlands. History The Treaty of Meerssen was signed in Meerssen in 870. The Treaty of Meerssen was ...
(870) was forced to cede much of Lotharingia to his brothers, retaining the
Rhone
Rhone
and
Meuse The Meuse ( , , , ; wa, Moûze ) or Maas ( , ; li, Maos or ) is a major European river, rising in France and flowing through Belgium and the Netherlands before draining into the North Sea The North Sea is a sea of the Atlantic Ocean bet ...

Meuse
basins (including
Verdun Verdun (, , , ; official name before 1970 ''Verdun-sur-Meuse'') is a city in the Meuse (department), Meuse departments of France, department in Grand Est, northeastern France. It is an arrondissement of the department. Verdun is the biggest ...

Verdun
,
Vienne Vienne () is a landlocked department Department may refer to: * Departmentalization, division of a larger organization into parts with specific responsibility Government and military *Department (country subdivision), a geographical and admin ...

Vienne
and
Besançon Besançon (, , , ; archaic german: Bisanz; la, Vesontio) is the capital of the department Department may refer to: * Departmentalization, division of a larger organization into parts with specific responsibility Government and military *Depa ...
) but leaving the
Rhineland The Rhineland (german: Rheinland; french: Rhénanie; nl, Rijnland; ksh, Rhingland; Latinised name: ''Rhenania'') is the name used for a loosely defined area of Western Germany along the Rhine, chiefly Middle Rhine, its middle section. Term ...

Rhineland
with
Aachen Aachen ( ; Aachen dialect: ''Oche'' ; French language, French and traditional English language, English: Aix-la-Chapelle ; Latin: ''Aquae Granni'' or ''Aquisgranum''; nl, Aken) is, with around 249,000 inhabitants, the 13th-largest city of No ...

Aachen
,
Metz Metz ( , , lat, Divodurum Mediomatricorum, then ) is a city in northeast France located at the confluence of the Moselle (river), Moselle and the Seille (Moselle), Seille rivers. Metz is the Prefectures in France, prefecture of the Moselle (de ...

Metz
, and
Trier Trier ( , ; lb, Tréier ), formerly known in English as Trèves ( ;) and Triers (see also Names of Trier in different languages, names in other languages), is a city on the banks of the Moselle (river), Moselle in Germany. It lies in a valley b ...

Trier
in
East Francia East Francia (Medieval Latin Medieval Latin was the form of Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Ro ...
. Viking incursions up the
Loire The Loire (, also ; ; oc, Léger, ; la, Liger) is the longest river in France and the 171st longest in the world. With a length of , it drains , more than a fifth of France's land while its average discharge is only half that of the Rhône ...

Loire
, the
Seine ) , mouth_location = Le Havre Le Havre (, ; nrf, Lé Hâvre) is an urban French commune A commune is an intentional community of people sharing living spaces, interests, values, beliefs, and often property Property (''lati ...

Seine
, and other inland waterways increased. During the reign of
Charles the Simple Charles III (17 September 879 – 7 October 929), called the Simple or the Straightforward (from the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was or ...

Charles the Simple
(898–922), Normans under
Rollo Rollo ( nrf, Rou, ''Rollo(u)n''; non, Hrólfr; french: Rollon;  – ) was a Viking Vikings—"pirate", non, víkingr is the modern name given to seafaring people primarily from Scandinavia Scandinavia; Sami languages, ...

Rollo
from
Scandinavia Scandinavia; : ''Skadesi-suolu''/''Skađsuâl''. ( ) is a in , with strong historical, cultural, and linguistic ties. In English usage, ''Scandinavia'' can refer to , , and , sometimes more narrowly to the , or more broadly to include , th ...

Scandinavia
settled along the Seine, downstream from Paris, in a region that came to be known as
Normandy Normandy (; french: link=no, Normandie ; nrf, Normaundie; from Old French Old French (, , ; Modern French French ( or ) is a Romance language of the Indo-European family. It descended from the Vulgar Latin of the Roman Empire, ...

Normandy
.


High Middle Ages

The
Carolingians The Carolingian dynasty (known variously as the Carlovingians, Carolingus, Carolings, Karolinger or Karlings) was a Frankish noble family founded by Charles Martel Charles Martel (c. 688 – 22 October 741) was a Frankish statesman and ...

Carolingians
were to share the fate of their predecessors: after an intermittent power struggle between the two dynasties, the accession in 987 of
Hugh Capet Hugh Capet (; french: Hugues Capet ; c. 939 – 14 October 996) was the from 987 to 996. He is the founder and first king from the . The son of the powerful duke and his wife , he was elected as the successor of the last king, . Hugh was des ...
, Duke of France and Count of Paris, established the
Capetian dynasty The Capetian dynasty (), also known as the House of France The term House of France refers to the branch of the Capetian dynasty which provided the Kings of France following the election of Hugh Capet. The House of France consists of a num ...
on the throne. With its offshoots, the houses of Valois and
BourbonBourbon may refer to: Food and drink * Bourbon whiskey, an American whiskey made using a corn-based mash * Bourbon barrel aged beer, a type of beer aged in bourbon barrels * Bourbon biscuit, a chocolate sandwich biscuit * A beer produced by Brass ...

Bourbon
, it was to rule France for more than 800 years. The old order left the new dynasty in immediate control of little beyond the middle Seine and adjacent territories, while powerful territorial lords such as the 10th- and 11th-century
counts of Blois The County of Blois was originally centred on Blois , population footnotes = Blois ( ; ) is a city and the capital of Loir-et-Cher department in Centre-Val de Loire, France, situated on the banks of the lower river Loire The Loire ( ...
accumulated large domains of their own through marriage and through private arrangements with lesser nobles for protection and support. The area around the lower Seine became a source of particular concern when
Duke William ''Duke William'' was a full-rigged ship, ship which served as a troop transport at the Siege of Louisbourg (1758), Siege of Louisbourg and as a deportation ship in the Île Saint-Jean Campaign of the Expulsion of the Acadians during the Seven Years' ...

Duke William
took possession of the kingdom of England by the
Norman Conquest The Norman Conquest (or the Conquest) was the 11th-century invasion and occupation of England by an army made up of thousands of Normans, Duchy of Brittany, Bretons, County of Flanders, Flemish, and men from other Kingdom of France, French ...
of 1066, making himself and his heirs the King's equal outside France (where he was still nominally subject to the Crown).
Henry II Henry II may refer to: Kings *Henry II of England (1133–89), reigned from 1154 *Henry II of Jerusalem and Cyprus (1271–1324), reigned from 1285; king of Jerusalem in name only from 1291 *Henry II of Castile (1334–79), reigned 1366–67 and ...

Henry II
inherited the Duchy of Normandy and the
County of Anjou The County of Anjou (, ; ; la, Andegavia) was a small French county and predecessor to the better known Duchy of Anjou. Its capital was Angers and it was roughly coextensive with the diocese of Angers. Anjou was bordered by Brittany to the west, ...
, and married France's newly single ex-queen,
Eleanor of Aquitaine Eleanor of Aquitaine ( – 1 April 1204) (french: Aliénor d'Aquitaine, ) was Queen of France Queen may refer to: Monarchy * Queen regnant A queen regnant (plural: queens regnant) is a female monarch, equivalent in rank and title to a ki ...

Eleanor of Aquitaine
, who ruled much of southwest France, in 1152. After defeating a
revolt Rebellion, uprising, or insurrection is a refusal of obedience or order. It refers to the open resistance against the orders of an established authority In the fields of sociology Sociology is the study of society, human social behavio ...
led by Eleanor and three of their four sons, Henry had Eleanor imprisoned, made the
Duke of Brittany A duke (male) can either be a monarch ranked below the emperor An emperor (from la, imperator, via fro, empereor) is a monarch, and usually the sovereignty, sovereign ruler of an empire or another type of imperial realm. Empress, the f ...
his vassal, and in effect ruled the western half of France as a greater power than the French throne. However, disputes among Henry's descendants over the division of his French territories, coupled with
John of England John (24 December 1166 – 19 October 1216) was King of England This list of kings and queens of the begins with , who initially ruled , one of the which later made up modern England. Alfred styled himself King of the from about ...

John of England
's lengthy quarrel with Philip II, allowed
Philip IIPhilip II may refer to: * Philip II of Macedon (382–336 BC) * Philip II (emperor) (238–249), Roman emperor * Philip II, Prince of Taranto (1329–1374) * Philip II, Duke of Burgundy (1342–1404) * Philip II, Duke of Savoy (1438-1497) * Philip ...

Philip II
to recover influence over most of this territory. After the French victory at the
Battle of Bouvines The Battle of Bouvines was fought on 27 July 1214 near the town of Bouvines Bouvines ( Dutch: ''Bovingen'') is a commune and village in the Nord department in northern France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=n ...

Battle of Bouvines
in 1214, the English monarchs maintained power only in southwestern Duchy of
Guyenne Guyenne or Guienne (; oc, Guiana ) was an old French province which corresponded roughly to the Roman province of '' Aquitania Secunda'' and the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Bordeaux, archdiocese of Bordeaux. The name "Guyenne" comes from ''Ag ...

Guyenne
.


Late Middle Ages and the Hundred Years' War

The death of
Charles IV of France Charles IVIn the standard numbering of French Kings, which dates to the reign of Charlemagne Charlemagne (; ) or Charles the Great or ''Carolus'', whence in English or in German (for this individual, specifically ''Karl der Große''). ...

Charles IV of France
in 1328 without male heirs ended the main Capetian line. Under
Salic law#REDIRECT Salic law The Salic law ( or ; la, Lex salica), or the was the ancient Salian Franks, Salian Frankish Civil law (legal system), civil law code compiled around AD 500 by the first Frankish King, Clovis I, Clovis. The written text is in La ...
the crown could not pass through a woman (Philip IV's daughter was Isabella, whose son was
Edward III of England Edward III (13 November 1312 – 21 June 1377), also known as Edward of Windsor before his accession, was King of England This list of kings and queens of the Kingdom of England The Kingdom of England (Latin Latin (, or , ) is ...

Edward III of England
), so the throne passed to
Philip VI
Philip VI
, son of
Charles of Valois Charles of Valois (12 March 1270 – 16 December 1325), the third son of Philip III of France Philip III (1 May 1245 – 5 October 1285), called the Bold (french: le Hardi), was king of France from 1270 until his death in 1285. His ...

Charles of Valois
. This, in addition to a long-standing dispute over the rights to Gascony in the south of France, and the relationship between England and the Flemish cloth towns, led to the
Hundred Years' War The Hundred Years’ War (french: link=yes, La guerre de Cent Ans; 1337–1453) was a series of armed conflicts between the kingdoms of and during the . It originated from disputed claims to the between the English and the French roy ...
of 1337–1453. The following century was to see devastating warfare, peasant revolts (the
English peasants' revolt of 1381 The Peasants' Revolt, also named Wat Tyler's Rebellion or the Great Rising, was a major uprising across large parts of England in 1381. The revolt had various causes, including the socio-economic and political tensions generated by the Black ...
and the ''
Jacquerie The Jacquerie () was a popular revolt in late-medieval Europe, popular revolt by peasant A peasant is a pre-industrial agricultural laborer or a farmer with limited land-ownership, especially one living in the Middle Ages under feudali ...

Jacquerie
'' of 1358 in France) and the growth of nationalism in both countries. The losses of the century of war were enormous, particularly owing to the plague (the
Black Death The Black Death (also known as the Pestilence, the Great Mortality or the Plague) was a bubonic plague pandemic occurring in Afro-Eurasia from 1346 to 1353. It is the List of epidemics, most fatal pandemic recorded in human history, causing th ...

Black Death
, usually considered an outbreak of
bubonic plague Bubonic plague is one of three types of plague caused by the plague bacterium Bacteria (; common noun bacteria, singular bacterium) are a type of biological cell The cell (from Latin ''cella'', meaning "small room") is the basic ...
), which arrived from Italy in 1348, spreading rapidly up the Rhone valley and thence across most of the country: it is estimated that a population of some 18–20 million in modern-day France at the time of the 1328
hearth tax A hearth tax was a property tax A property tax or millage rate is an ad valorem tax An ''ad valorem'' tax (Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. La ...
returns had been reduced 150 years later by 50 percent or more.


Renaissance and Reformation

The Renaissance era was noted for the emergence of powerful centralized institutions, as well as a flourishing culture (much of it imported from Italy). The kings built a strong fiscal system, which heightened the power of the king to raise armies that overawed the local nobility. In Paris especially there emerged strong traditions in literature, art and music. The prevailing style was
classical Classical may refer to: European antiquity *Classical antiquity, a period of history from roughly the 7th or 8th century B.C.E. to the 5th century C.E. centered on the Mediterranean Sea *Classical architecture, architecture derived from Greek and ...
. The
Ordinance of Villers-Cotterêts The Ordinance of Villers-Cotterêts (french: Ordonnance de Villers-Cotterêts) is an extensive piece of reform legislation Legislation is the process or product of enrolling, enacting, or promulgating Promulgation is the formal proclamation ...
was signed into law by
Francis IFrancis I or Francis the First may refer to: * Francesco I Gonzaga (1366–1407) * Francis I, Duke of Brittany (1414–1450), reigned 1442–1450 * Francis I of France (1494–1547), reigned 1515–1547 * Francis I, Duke of Saxe-Lauenburg (1510–15 ...
in 1539. Largely the work of Chancellor Guillaume Poyet, it dealt with a number of government, judicial and ecclesiastical matters. Articles 110 and 111, the most famous, called for the use of the French language in all legal acts, notarised contracts and official legislation.


Italian Wars

After the Hundred Years' War,
Charles VIII of France Charles VIII, called the Affable (french: l'Affable; 30 June 1470 – 7 April 1498), was King of France The monarchs of the Kingdom of France The Kingdom of France ( fro, Reaume de France, frm, Royaulme de France, french: link=no, Royaum ...
signed three additional treaties with
Henry VII of England Henry VII ( cy, Harri Tudur; 28 January 1457 – 21 April 1509) was and from his seizure of the crown on 22 August 1485 until his death in 1509. He was the first monarch of the . Henry's mother, , was a descendant of the branch of the . H ...
,
Maximilian I of Habsburg
Maximilian I of Habsburg
, and
Ferdinand II of Aragon Ferdinand II of Aragon ( an, Ferrando; ca, Ferran; eu, Errando; es, Fernando; 10 March 1452 – 23 January 1516), also called ''Ferdinand the Catholic'', was King of Aragon from 1479, King of Sicily (as Ferdinand II) from 1469, List of monar ...
respectively at Étaples (1492), Treaty of Senlis, Senlis (1493) and in Treaty of Barcelona, Barcelona (1493). These three treaties cleared the way for France to undertake the long
Italian Wars The Italian Wars, often referred to as the Great Wars of Italy and sometimes as the Habsburg–Valois Wars, were a long series of wars fought between 1494 and 1559 in Italy during the Renaissance. The Italian peninsula, economically advanced bu ...
(1494–1559), which marked the beginning of early modern France. French efforts to gain dominance resulted only in the increased power of the Habsburg house.


Wars of Religion

Barely were the Italian Wars over, when France was plunged into a domestic crisis with far-reaching consequences. Despite the conclusion of Concordat of Bologna, a Concordat between France and the Papacy (1516), granting the crown unrivalled power in senior ecclesiastical appointments, France was deeply affected by the Protestant Reformation's attempt to break the hegemony of Catholic Europe. A growing urban-based Protestant minority (later dubbed ''
Huguenots The Huguenots ( , also , ) were a religious group of French French (french: français(e), link=no) may refer to: * Something of, from, or related to France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République fran ...
'') faced ever harsher repression under the rule of Francis I's son Henry II of France, King Henry II. After Henry II's death in a joust, the country was ruled by his widow Catherine de' Medici and her sons Francis II of France, Francis II, Charles IX of France, Charles IX and Henry III of France, Henry III. Renewed Catholic reaction headed by the powerful dukes of Guise culminated in a massacre of Huguenots (1562), starting the first of the French Wars of Religion, during which English, German, and Spanish forces intervened on the side of rival Protestant and Catholic forces. Opposed to absolute monarchy, the Huguenot Monarchomachs theorized during this time the right of rebellion and the legitimacy of tyrannicide. The Wars of Religion culminated in the War of the Three Henrys (1584-1598), War of the Three Henrys in which Henry III of France, Henry III assassinated Henry I, Duke of Guise, Henry de Guise, leader of the Spanish-backed Catholic League (French), Catholic league, and the king was murdered in return. After the assassination of both Henry of Guise (1588) and Henry III (1589), the conflict was ended by the accession of the Protestant king of Navarre as Henry IV of France, Henry IV (first king of the Bourbon dynasty) and his subsequent abandonment of Protestantism (Expedient of 1592) effective in 1593, his acceptance by most of the Catholic establishment (1594) and by the Pope (1595), and his issue of the toleration decree known as the Edict of Nantes (1598), which guaranteed freedom of private worship and civil equality.


Early Modern period


Colonial France

France's pacification under Henry IV of France, Henry IV laid much of the ground for the beginnings of France's rise to European hegemony. France was expansive during all but the end of the seventeenth century: the French began trading in India and Madagascar, founded Quebec City, Quebec and penetrated the North American Great Lakes and Mississippi, established plantation economies in the West Indies and extended their trade contacts in the Levant and enlarged their merchant marine.


Thirty Years' War

Henry IV's son Louis XIII of France, Louis XIII and his minister (1624–1642) Cardinal Richelieu, elaborated a policy against Spain and the Holy Roman Empire during the
Thirty Years' War The Thirty Years' War was a conflict fought largely within the Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Romanum Imperium; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Western Europe, Weste ...
(1618–48) which had broken out in Germany. After the death of both king and cardinal, the Peace of Westphalia (1648) secured universal acceptance of Germany's political and religious fragmentation, but the Regency of Anne of Austria and her minister Cardinal Mazarin experienced a civil uprising known as the Fronde (1648–1653) which expanded into a Fronde, Franco-Spanish War (1653–59). The Treaty of the Pyrenees (1659) formalised France's seizure (1642) of the Spanish territory of Roussillon after the crushing of the ephemeral Catalan Republic (1641), Catalan Republic and ushered a short period of peace.


Administrative structures

The ''Ancien Régime'', a French term rendered in English as "Old Rule", or simply "Former Regime", refers primarily to the aristocratic, social and political system of early modern France under the Valois dynasty, late Valois and
BourbonBourbon may refer to: Food and drink * Bourbon whiskey, an American whiskey made using a corn-based mash * Bourbon barrel aged beer, a type of beer aged in bourbon barrels * Bourbon biscuit, a chocolate sandwich biscuit * A beer produced by Brass ...

Bourbon
dynasties. The administrative and social structures of the Ancien Régime were the result of years of state-building, legislative acts (like the
Ordinance of Villers-Cotterêts The Ordinance of Villers-Cotterêts (french: Ordonnance de Villers-Cotterêts) is an extensive piece of reform legislation Legislation is the process or product of enrolling, enacting, or promulgating Promulgation is the formal proclamation ...
), internal conflicts and civil wars, but they remained a confusing patchwork of local Privilege (legal ethics), privilege and historic differences until the
French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) was a period of radical political and societal change in France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in Western Europe, consi ...

French Revolution
brought about a radical suppression of administrative incoherence.


Louis XIV, the Sun King

For most of the reign of Louis XIV of France, Louis XIV (1643–1715), ("The Sun King"), France was the dominant power in Europe, aided by the diplomacy of Cardinal Richelieu's successor as the King's chief minister, (1642–61) Cardinal Jules Mazarin, (1602–61). Cardinal Mazarin oversaw the creation of a French Royal Navy that rivalled Royal Navy, England's, expanding it from 25 ships to almost 200. The size of the Army was also considerably increased. Renewed wars (the War of Devolution, 1667–68 and the Franco-Dutch War, 1672–78) brought further territorial gains (Artois and western Flanders and the free county of Burgundy, previously left to the Empire in 1482), but at the cost of the increasingly concerted opposition of rival royal powers, and a legacy of an increasingly enormous national debt. An adherent of the theory of the divine right of kings, "Divine Right of Kings", which advocates the divine origin of temporal power and any lack of earthly restraint of monarchical rule, Louis XIV continued his predecessors' work of creating a Centralized government, centralized state governed from the capital of Paris. He sought to eliminate the remnants of feudalism still persisting in parts of France and, by compelling the noble elite to regularly inhabit his lavish Palace of Versailles, built on the outskirts of Paris, succeeded in pacifying the aristocracy, many members of which had participated in the earlier "Fronde" rebellion during Louis' minority youth. By these means he consolidated a system of absolute monarchy in France that endured 150 years until the
French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) was a period of radical political and societal change in France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in Western Europe, consi ...

French Revolution
. McCabe says critics used fiction to portray the degraded Turkish Court, using "the harem, the Sultan court, oriental despotism, luxury, gems and spices, carpets, and silk cushions" as an unfavorable analogy to the corruption of the French royal court. The king sought to impose total religious uniformity on the country, repealing the "Edict of Nantes" in 1685. The infamous practice of "dragonnades" was adopted, whereby intentionally rough soldiers were quartered in the homes of Protestant families and allowed to have their way with them — stealing, raping, torturing and killing adults and infants in their hovels. It is estimated that anywhere between 150,000 and 300,000 Protestants fled France during the wave of persecution that followed the repeal, (following "
Huguenots The Huguenots ( , also , ) were a religious group of French French (french: français(e), link=no) may refer to: * Something of, from, or related to France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République fran ...
" beginning a hundred and fifty years earlier until the end of the 18th century) costing the country a great many intellectuals, artisans, and other valuable people. Persecution extended to unorthodox Roman Catholics like the Jansenists, a group that denied free will and had already been condemned by the popes. Louis was no theologian and understood little of the complex doctrines of Jansenism, satisfying himself with the fact that they threatened the unity of the state. In this, he garnered the friendship of the papacy, which had previously been hostile to France because of its policy of putting all church property in the country under the jurisdiction of the state rather than that of Rome. In November 1700, the Spanish king Charles II of Spain, Charles II died, ending the Habsburg line in that country. Louis had long waited for this moment, and now planned to put a Bourbon relative, Philip, Duke of Anjou, (1683–1746), on the throne. Essentially, Kingdom of Spain, Spain was to become a perpetual ally and even obedient satellite of France, ruled by a king who would carry out orders from Versailles. Realizing how this would upset the balance of power, the other European rulers were outraged. However, most of the alternatives were equally undesirable. For example, putting another Habsburg on the throne would end up recreating the grand multi-national empire of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, Charles V (1500–58), of the
Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Romanum Imperium; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Western Western may refer to: Places *Western, Nebraska, a village in the US *Western, New York, a town i ...
(German First Reich), Kingdom of Spain, Spain, and the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, Two Sicilies which would also grossly upset the power balance. After nine years of exhausting war, the last thing Louis wanted was another conflict. However, the rest of Europe would not stand for his ambitions in Spain, and so the long War of the Spanish Succession began (1701–14), a mere three years after the War of the Grand Alliance, (1688–97, aka "War of the League of Augsburg") had just concluded.


Dissent and revolution

The reign (1715–74) of Louis XV of France, Louis XV saw an initial return to peace and prosperity under the regency (1715–23) of Philippe II, Duke of Orléans, whose policies were largely continued (1726–1743) by Cardinal Fleury, prime minister in all but name. The exhaustion of Europe after two major wars resulted in a long period of peace, only interrupted by minor conflicts like the War of the Polish Succession from 1733 to 1735. Large-scale warfare resumed with the War of the Austrian Succession (1740–48). But alliance with the traditional Habsburg enemy (the "Diplomatic Revolution" of 1756) against the rising power of Britain and Prussia led to costly failure in the Seven Years' War (1756–63) and the loss of France's North American colonies. On the whole, the 18th century saw growing discontent with the monarchy and the established order. Louis XV was a highly unpopular king for his sexual excesses, overall weakness, and for losing Canada to the British. A strong ruler like Louis XIV could enhance the position of the monarchy, while Louis XV weakened it. The writings of the philosophes such as Voltaire were a clear sign of discontent, but the king chose to ignore them. He died of smallpox in 1774, and the French people shed few tears at his passing. While France had not yet experienced the Industrial Revolution that was beginning in Britain, the rising middle class of the cities felt increasingly frustrated with a system and rulers that seemed silly, frivolous, aloof, and antiquated, even if true feudalism no longer existed in France. Upon Louis XV's death, his grandson Louis XVI of France, Louis XVI became king. Initially popular, he too came to be widely detested by the 1780s. He was married to an Austrian archduchess, Marie Antoinette. French intervention in the American War of Independence was also very expensive. With the country deeply in debt, Louis XVI permitted the radical reforms of Anne Robert Jacques Turgot, Baron de Laune, Turgot and Guillaume-Chrétien de Lamoignon de Malesherbes, Malesherbes, but noble disaffection led to Turgot's dismissal and Malesherbes' resignation in 1776. They were replaced by Jacques Necker. Necker had resigned in 1781 to be replaced by Charles Alexandre de Calonne, Calonne and Étienne Charles de Loménie de Brienne, Brienne, before being restored in 1788. A harsh winter that year led to widespread food shortages, and by then France was a powder keg ready to explode. On the eve of the
French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) was a period of radical political and societal change in France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in Western Europe, consi ...

French Revolution
of July 1789, France was in a profound institutional and financial crisis, but the ideas of the Age of Enlightenment, Enlightenment had begun to permeate the educated classes of society.


Limited monarchy

On September 3, 1791, the absolute monarchy which had governed France for 948 years was forced to limit its power and become a provisional constitutional monarchy. However, this too would not last very long and on September 21, 1792, the French monarchy was effectively abolished by the proclamation of the French First Republic. The role of the King in France was finally ended with the execution of Louis XVI by guillotine on Monday, January 21, 1793, followed by the "Reign of Terror", mass executions and the provisional "French Directory, Directory" form of French First Republic, republican government, and the eventual beginnings of twenty-five years of reform, upheaval, dictatorship, wars and renewal, with the various Napoleonic Wars.


Restoration

Following the
French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) was a period of radical political and societal change in France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in Western Europe, consi ...

French Revolution
(1789–99) and the First French Empire under Napoleon (1804–1814), the monarchy was restored when a War of the Sixth Coalition, coalition of European powers restored by arms the monarchy to the House of Bourbon in 1814. However the deposed Emperor Napoleon I returned triumphantly to Paris from his exile in Elba and ruled France for a short period known as the
Hundred Days The Hundred Days (french: les Cent-Jours ), also known as the War of the Seventh Coalition, marked the period between Napoleon Napoléon Bonaparte (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821) was a French military and political leader. He rose ...
. When a War of the Seventh Coalition, Seventh European Coalition again deposed Napoleon after the Battle of Waterloo in 1815, the Bourbon monarchy was once again restored. The Count of Provence, brother of Louis XVI, who was guillotined in 1793, was crowned as Louis XVIII of France, Louis XVIII, nicknamed "The Desired". Louis XVIII tried to conciliate the legacies of the Revolution and the Ancien Régime, by permitting the formation of a French Parliament, Parliament and a Charter of 1814, constitutional Charter, usually known as the "''Charte octroyée''" ("Granted Charter"). His reign was characterized by disagreements between the Doctrinaires, liberal thinkers who supported the Charter and the rising bourgeoisie, and the Ultra-royalists, aristocrats and clergymen who totally refused the Revolution's heritage. Peace was maintained by statesmen like Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord, Talleyrand and the Armand-Emmanuel de Vignerot du Plessis, Duc de Richelieu, Duke of Richelieu, as well as the King's moderation and prudent intervention. In 1823, the liberal agitations in Spain led to a Hundred Thousand Sons of Saint Louis, French intervention on the royalists' side, which permitted King Ferdinand VII of Spain to abolish the Spanish Constitution of 1812, Constitution of 1812. However, the work of Louis XVIII was frustrated when, after his death on 16 September 1824, his brother the Count of Artois became king under the name of Charles X of France, Charles X. Charles X was a strong reactionary who supported the ultra-royalists and the Catholic Church in France, Catholic Church. Under his reign, the censorship of newspapers was reinforced, the Anti-Sacrilege Act passed, and compensations to French emigration (1789–1815), Émigrés were increased. However, the reign also witnessed the Morea expedition, French intervention in the Greek War of Independence, Greek Revolution in favour of the Greek rebels, and the first phase of the French conquest of Algeria, conquest of Algeria. The absolutist tendencies of the King were disliked by the Doctrinaire majority in the Chamber of Deputies (France), Chamber of Deputies, that on 18 March 1830 Address of the 221, sent an address to the King, upholding the rights of the Chamber and in effect supporting a transition to a full parliamentary system. Charles X received this address as a veiled threat, and in 25 July of the same year, he issued the July Ordinances, St. Cloud Ordinances, in an attempt to reduce Parliament's powers and re-establish absolute rule. The opposition reacted with riots in Parliament and barricades in Paris, that resulted in the July Revolution. The King abdicated, as did his son the Louis Antoine, Duke of Angoulême, Prince Louis Antoine, in favour to his grandson Henri, Count of Chambord, Count of Chambord, nominating his cousin the Louis Philippe d'Orléans, Duke of Orléans as regent. However, it was too late, and the liberal opposition won out over the monarchy.


Aftermath and July Monarchy

On 9 August 1830, the Chamber of Deputies elected Louis Philippe d'Orléans, Louis Philippe, Duke of Orléans as "King of the French": for the first time since French Revolution, the King was designated as the ruler of the French people and not the country. The Bourbon white flag was substituted with the French tricolour, and a Charter of 1830, new Charter was introduced in August 1830. The French conquest of Algeria, conquest of Algeria continued, and new settlements were established in the Gulf of Guinea, Gabon, Merina Kingdom, Madagascar, and Mayotte, while Kingdom of Tahiti, Tahiti was placed under protectorate. However, despite the initial reforms, Louis Philippe was little different from his predecessors. The old French nobility, nobility was replaced by urban bourgeoisie, and the working class was excluded from voting. Louis Philippe appointed notable bourgeois as Prime Minister of France, Prime Minister, like banker Casimir Périer, academic François Guizot, general Jean-de-Dieu Soult, and thus obtained the nickname of "Citizen King" (''Roi-Citoyen''). The July Monarchy was beset by corruption scandals and financial crisis. The opposition of the King was composed of Legitimists, supporting the Henri, Count of Chambord, Count of Chambord, Bourbon claimant to the throne, and of Bonapartists and Republicanism in France, Republicans, who fought against royalty and supported the principles of democracy. The King tried to suppress the opposition with censorship, but when the ''Campagne des banquets'' ("Banquets' Campaign") was repressed in February 1848, riots and seditions erupted in Paris and later all France, resulting in the French Revolution of 1848, February Revolution. The National Guard (France), National Guard refused to repress the rebellion, resulting in Louis Philippe abdicating and fleeing to England. On 24 February 1848, the monarchy was abolished and the French Second Republic, Second Republic was proclaimed. Despite later attempts to re-establish the Kingdom in the 1870s, during the French Third Republic, Third Republic, the French monarchy has not returned.


Territories and provinces

Before the 13th century, only a small part of what is now France was under control of the Frankish king; in the north there were Viking incursions leading to the formation of the Duchy of Normandy; in the west, the counts of Anjou established themselves as powerful rivals of the king, by the late 11th century ruling over the "
Angevin Empire The Angevin Empire (; french: link=no, Empire Plantagenêt) describes the possessions of the Angevin kings of England The Angevins (; "from Anjou Anjou (, ; ; la, Andegavia) was a French province straddling the lower Loire River. Its cap ...

Angevin Empire
", which included the kingdom of England. It was only with Philip II of France that the bulk of the territory of Western Francia came under the rule of the Frankish kings, and Philip was consequently the first king to call himself "king of France" (1190). The division of France between the Angevin (Plantagenet) kings of England and the Capetian kings of France would lead to the
Hundred Years' War The Hundred Years’ War (french: link=yes, La guerre de Cent Ans; 1337–1453) was a series of armed conflicts between the kingdoms of and during the . It originated from disputed claims to the between the English and the French roy ...
, and France would regain control over these territories only by the mid 15th century. What is now eastern France (Lorraine, Arelat) was not part of Western Francia to begin with and was only incorporated into the kingdom during the Early modern France, early modern period. Territories inherited from Western Francia: :Domain of the Frankish king (royal domain or ''demesne'', see Crown lands of France) :* Ile de France :* Reims :* Bourges :* Orléans :Direct vassals of the French king in the 10th to 12th centuries: :*County of Champagne (to the royal domain in 1316) :* County of Blois (to the royal domain in 1391) :* Duchy of Burgundy (until 1477, then divided between France and the Habsburg Netherlands, Habsburgs) :* County of Flanders (to Burgundy in 1369) :* Duke of Bourbon, Duchy of Bourbon (1327–1523) Acquisitions during the 13th to 14th centuries: * Duchy of Normandy (1204) * County of Tourain (1204) * County of Anjou (1225) * County of Maine (1225) * County of Auvergne (1271) * County of Toulouse (1271), including: **County of Quercy **County of Rouergue ***County of Rodez **County of Gevaudan **Viscounty of Albi **Septimania, Marquisat of Gothia * County of Champagne (to the royal domain in 1316) * Dauphiné (1349), hereditary possession of the kings of France, to be held by the Dauphin of France, heir apparent, but technically not part of the kingdom of France because it remained nominally part of the
Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Romanum Imperium; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Western Western may refer to: Places *Western, Nebraska, a village in the US *Western, New York, a town i ...
. * County of Blois (to the royal domain in 1391) Acquisitions from the Plantagenet kings of England with the French victory in the
Hundred Years' War The Hundred Years’ War (french: link=yes, La guerre de Cent Ans; 1337–1453) was a series of armed conflicts between the kingdoms of and during the . It originated from disputed claims to the between the English and the French roy ...
1453 *Duchy of Aquitaine (
Guyenne Guyenne or Guienne (; oc, Guiana ) was an old French province which corresponded roughly to the Roman province of '' Aquitania Secunda'' and the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Bordeaux, archdiocese of Bordeaux. The name "Guyenne" comes from ''Ag ...

Guyenne
), including: ** County of Poitou ** County of La Marche ** County of Angoulême ** County of Périgord ***County of Velay ** County of County of Saintonge, Saintonge ** History of Limousin, Viscounty of Limousin ** Lordship of Issoudun **Lordship of Déols **Duchy of Gascogne (Gascony) ***County of Agenais * Duchy of Bretagne (disputed since the War of the Breton Succession, to France in 1453, to the royal demesne in 1547) Acquisitions after the end of the Hundred Years' War: * Duchy of Burgundy (1477) * Pale of Calais (1558) * Kingdom of Navarre (1620) * Alsace: Peace of Westphalia (1648), Treaty of Nijmegen, Truce of Ratisbon (1684) * County of Artois (1659) *Roussillon and Perpignan, Montmédy and other parts of Luxembourg, parts of Flanders, including Arras, Béthune, Gravelines and Thionville (Treaty of the Pyrenees 1659) * Free County of Burgundy (1668, 1679) *French Hainaut (1679) * Principality of Orange (1713) * Duchy of Lorraine (1766) * French conquest of Corsica (1769) * Comtat Venaissin (1791)


Religion

Prior to the
French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) was a period of radical political and societal change in France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in Western Europe, consi ...

French Revolution
, the Catholic Church was the official state religion of the Kingdom of France. France was traditionally considered the Church's eldest daughter (French: ''Fille aînée de l'Église''), and the King of France always maintained close links to the Pope. However, the French monarchy maintained a significant degree of autonomy, namely through its policy of "Gallicanism", whereby the king selected bishops rather than the papacy. During the Protestant Reformation of the mid 16th century, France developed a large and influential Protestant population, primarily of Reformed tradition, Reformed confession; after French theologian and pastor John Calvin introduced the Reformation in France, the number of Protestantism in France, French Protestants (
Huguenots The Huguenots ( , also , ) were a religious group of French French (french: français(e), link=no) may refer to: * Something of, from, or related to France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République fran ...
) steadily swelled to 10 percent of the population, or roughly 1.8 million people. The ensuring French Wars of Religion, and particularly the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre, decimated the Huguenot community;Hans J. Hillerbrand, ''Encyclopedia of Protestantism: 4-volume Set'', paragraphs "France" and "Huguenots" Protestants declined to seven to eight percent of the kingdom's population by the end of the 16th century. The Edict of Nantes brought decades of respite until its revocation of the Edict of Nantes, revocation in the late 17th century by
Louis XIV , house = House of Bourbon, Bourbon , father = Louis XIII, Louis XIII of France , mother = Anne of Austria , birth_date = , birth_place = Château de Saint-Germain-en-Laye, Saint-Germain-en-Laye, Kingdom of France, F ...

Louis XIV
. The resulting exodus of
Huguenots The Huguenots ( , also , ) were a religious group of French French (french: français(e), link=no) may refer to: * Something of, from, or related to France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République fran ...
from the Kingdom of France created a brain drain, as many of them had occupied important places in society.''Encyclopædia Britannica'', 11th ed, Frank Puaux, "Huguenot" History of the Jews in France, Jews have a documented presence in France since at least the early Middle Ages. The Kingdom of France was a center of Jewish learning in the Middle Ages, producing influential Jewish scholars such as Rashi and even hosting Disputation of Paris, theological debates between Jews and Christians. Persecution of Jews, Widespread persecution began in the 11th century and increased intermittently throughout the Middle Ages, with multiple expulsions and returns.


See also

* Economic history of France


References


Further reading

* Beik, William. ''A Social and Cultural History of Early Modern France'' (2009
excerpt and text search
* Caron, François. ''An Economic History of Modern France'' (1979
online edition
* Doyle, William. ''Old Regime France: 1648–1788'' (2001
excerpt and text search
* Duby, Georges. ''France in the Middle Ages 987–1460: From Hugh Capet to Joan of Arc'' (1993), survey by a leader of the Annales Schoo
excerpt and text search
* Fierro, Alfred. ''Historical Dictionary of Paris'' (1998) 392pp, an abridged translation of his ''Histoire et dictionnaire de Paris'' (1996), 1580pp * Goubert, Pierre. ''The Course of French History'' (1991), standard French textboo
excerpt and text search
als
complete text online
* Goubert, Pierre. ''Louis XIV and Twenty Million Frenchmen'' (1972), social history from Annales School * Haine, W. Scott. ''The History of France'' (2000), 280 pp. textbook
and text search
als
online edition
* * Holt, Mack P. ''Renaissance and Reformation France: 1500–1648'' (2002
excerpt and text search
* Jones, Colin, and Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie. ''The Cambridge Illustrated History of France'' (1999
excerpt and text search
* Jones, Colin. ''The Great Nation: France from Louis XV to Napoleon'' (2002
excerpt and text search
* Jones, Colin. ''Paris: Biography of a City'' (2004), 592pp; comprehensive history by a leading British schola
excerpt and text search
* Le Roy Ladurie, Emmanuel. ''The Ancien Régime: A History of France 1610–1774'' (1999), survey by leader of the Annales Schoo
excerpt and text search
* Potter, David. ''France in the Later Middle Ages 1200–1500,'' (2003
excerpt and text search
* Potter, David. ''A History of France, 1460–1560: The Emergence of a Nation-State'' (1995) * Price, Roger. ''A Concise History of France'' (1993
excerpt and text search
* Raymond, Gino. ''Historical Dictionary of France'' (2nd ed. 2008) 528pp * Roche, Daniel. ''France in the Enlightenment'' (1998), wide-ranging history 1700–178
excerpt and text search
* Wolf, John B. ''Louis XIV'' (1968), the standard scholarly biograph
online edition


Historiography

* Gildea, Robert. ''The Past in French History'' (1996) * Nora, Pierre, ed. ''Realms of Memory: Rethinking the French Past'' (3 vol, 1996), essays by scholars
excerpt and text search vol 2 excerptsvol 3 excerpts
* Pinkney, David H. "Two Thousand Years of Paris," ''Journal of Modern History'' (1951) 23#3 pp. 262–26
in JSTOR
* Revel, Jacques, and Lynn Hunt, eds. ''Histories: French Constructions of the Past'' (1995). 654pp, 64 essays; emphasis on Annales School * Symes, Carol. "The Middle Ages between Nationalism and Colonialism," ''French Historical Studies'' (Winter 2011) 34#1 pp 37–46 * Thébaud, Françoise. "Writing Women's and Gender History in France: A National Narrative?" ''Journal of Women's History'' (2007) 19#1 pp. 167–172 in Project Muse


External links

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