The Info List - Kingdom Of France

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La Parisienne (1830–1848) "The Parisian"

The Kingdom of France
in 1789.

Capital Paris
(987–1682) Versailles (1682–1789) Paris
(1789–1792; 1814–1848)

Languages Latin, French (official) Breton, Basque, Alsatian

Religion Roman Catholicism

Government Feudal monarchy (987–1648) Absolute monarchy
Absolute monarchy
(1648–1791) Constitutional monarchy
Constitutional monarchy
(1791–1792; 1814–1848)


 •  987–996 Hugh Capet

 •  1180–1223 Philip II

 •  1422–1461 Charles VII

 •  1589–1610 Henry IV

 •  1643–1715 Louis XIV

 •  1774–1791 Louis XVI

 •  1814–1824 Louis XVIII

 •  1824–1830 Charles X

 •  1830–1848 Louis Philippe I

Prime Minister

 •  1815 Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand

 •  1847–1848 François Guizot

Legislature Estates General (1302–1791) Legislative Assembly (1791–1792) Parliament (1814–1848)

 •  Upper house Chamber of Peers

 •  Lower house Chamber of Deputies

Historical era Medieval / Early Modern

 •  Begin of Capetian dynasty 3 July 987

 •  Hundred Years' War 1337–1453

 •  French Wars of Religion 1562–1598

 •  French Revolution 5 May 1789

 •  Bourbon Restoration 6 April 1814

 •  Bourbon Monarchy
Deposed 2 August 1830

 •  July Monarchy
July Monarchy
Deposed 24 February 1848

Currency Livre, Franc, Écu, Louis d'or

Preceded by Succeeded by

West Francia

First French Empire

French First Republic

French Second Republic

Today part of  France  Belgium  Luxembourg  Germany   Switzerland

The Kingdom of France
(French: Royaume de France) was a medieval and early modern monarchy in Western Europe. It was one of the most powerful states in Europe and a great power since the Late Middle Ages and the Hundred Years' War. It was also an early colonial power, with possessions around the world. France
originated as West Francia
West Francia
( Francia
Occidentalis), the western half of the Carolingian Empire, with the Treaty of Verdun
Treaty of Verdun
(843). A branch of the Carolingian dynasty
Carolingian dynasty
continued to rule until 987, when Hugh Capet
Hugh Capet
was elected king and founded the Capetian dynasty. The territory remained known as Francia
and its ruler as rex Francorum ("king of the Franks") well into the High Middle Ages. The first king calling himself Roi de France
("King of France") was Philip II, in 1190. France
continued to be ruled by the Capetians and their cadet lines—the Valois and Bourbon—until the monarchy was overthrown in 1792 during the French Revolution. France in the Middle Ages
France in the Middle Ages
was a de-centralised, feudal monarchy. In Brittany and Catalonia (now a part of Spain) the authority of the French king was barely felt. Lorraine and Provence were states of the Holy Roman Empire
Holy Roman Empire
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. During the Late Middle Ages, the Kings of England
Kings of England
laid claim to the French throne, resulting in a series of conflicts known as the Hundred Years' War (1337–1453). Subsequently, France
sought to extend its influence into Italy, but was defeated by Spain in the ensuing Italian Wars (1494–1559). France
in the early modern era was increasingly centralised; the French language
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) 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, which led to a series of civil wars, the Wars of Religion (1562–1598). France
laid claim to large stretches of North America, known collectively as New France. Wars with Great Britain led to the loss of much of this territory by 1763. French intervention in the American Revolutionary War helped secure the independence of the new United States of America. 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. The monarchy was restored by the other great powers in 1814 and lasted (except for the Hundred Days
Hundred Days
in 1815) until the July Revolution.


1 Political history

1.1 West Francia 1.2 High Middle Ages 1.3 Late Middle Ages
Late Middle Ages
and the Hundred Years' War 1.4 Renaissance and Reformation

1.4.1 Italian Wars 1.4.2 Wars of Religion

1.5 Early Modern period

1.5.1 Colonial France 1.5.2 Thirty Years' War 1.5.3 Administrative structures 1.5.4 Louis XIV, the Sun King 1.5.5 Dissent and revolution Limited monarchy

1.6 Restoration 1.7 Aftermath and July Monarchy

2 Territories and provinces 3 See also 4 References 5 Further reading

5.1 Historiography

Political history[edit] West Francia[edit] Main article: West Francia Further information: Carolingian Empire During the later years of the elderly Charlemagne's rule, the Vikings made advances along the northern and western perimeters of the Kingdom of the Franks. After Charlemagne's death in 814 his heirs were incapable of maintaining political unity and the empire began to crumble. The Treaty of Verdun
Treaty of Verdun
of 843 divided the Carolingian Empire into three parts, with Charles the Bald
Charles the Bald
ruling over West Francia, the nucleus of what would develop into the kingdom of France.[1] Charles the Bald was also crowned King of Lotharingia after the death of Lothair II
Lothair II
in 869, but in the Treaty of Meerssen
Treaty of Meerssen
(870) was forced to cede much of Lotharingia to his brothers, retaining the Rhone
and Meuse
basins (including Verdun, Vienne
and Besançon) but leaving the Rhineland
with Aachen, Metz
and Trier
in East Francia. Viking
advances were allowed to increase, and their dreaded longships were sailing up the Loire
and Seine
rivers and other inland waterways, wreaking havoc and spreading terror. During the reign of Charles the Simple (898–922), Normans under Rollo
from Norway, were settled in an area on either side of the River Seine, downstream from Paris, that was to become Normandy.[2][3] High Middle Ages[edit] Main articles: France in the Middle Ages
France in the Middle Ages
and Capetian dynasty The 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, Duke of France
and Count of Paris, established the Capetian dynasty
Capetian dynasty
on the throne. With its offshoots, the houses of Valois and Bourbon, it was to rule France
for more than 800 years.[4] 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 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 took possession of the kingdom of England
by the Norman Conquest
Norman Conquest
of 1066, making himself and his heirs the King's equal outside France
(where he was still nominally subject to the Crown). Henry II inherited the Duchy of Normandy
and the County of Anjou, and married France's newly divorced ex-queen, Eleanor of Aquitaine, who ruled much of southwest France, in 1152. After defeating a revolt led by Eleanor and three of their four sons, Henry had Eleanor imprisoned, made the Duke of Brittany 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's lengthy quarrel with Philip II, allowed Philip II to recover influence over most of this territory. After the French victory at the Battle of Bouvines
Battle of Bouvines
in 1214, the English monarchs maintained power only in southwestern Duchy of Guyenne.[5] Late Middle Ages
Late Middle Ages
and the Hundred Years' War[edit]

in 1223

Main articles: France in the Middle Ages
France in the Middle Ages
and Hundred Years' War The death of Charles IV of France
in 1328 without male heirs ended the main Capetian line. Under Salic law
Salic law
the crown could not pass through a woman (Philip IV's daughter was Isabella, whose son was Edward III of England), so the throne passed to Philip VI, son of 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
Hundred Years' War
of 1337–1453. The following century was to see devastating warfare, peasant revolts (the English peasants' revolt of 1381
English peasants' revolt of 1381
and the Jacquerie
of 1358 in France) and the growth of nationalism in both countries.[6] The losses of the century of war were enormous, particularly owing to the plague (the Black Death, usually considered an outbreak of bubonic plague), 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 returns had been reduced 150 years later by 50 percent or more.[7] Renaissance and Reformation[edit] The Renaissance era was noted for the emergence of powerful centralized institutions, as well as a flourishing culture ( much of it imported from Italy).[8] The kings built a strong fiscal system, which heightened the power of the king to raise armies that overawed the local nobility.[9] In Paris
especially there emerged strong traditions in literature, art and music. The prevailing style was classical.[10][11] The Ordinance of Villers-Cotterêts
Ordinance of Villers-Cotterêts
was signed into law by Francis I 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[edit] Main article: Italian Wars After the Hundred Years' War, Charles VIII of France
signed three additional treaties with Henry VII of England, Maximilian I of Habsburg, and Ferdinand II of Aragon
Ferdinand II of Aragon
respectively at Étaples (1492), Senlis (1493) and in Barcelona (1493). These three treaties cleared the way for France
to undertake the long Italian Wars
Italian Wars
(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[edit] Main article: French Wars of Religion

Henry IV, by Frans Pourbus the younger, 1610.

Barely were the Italian Wars
Italian Wars
over, when France
was plunged into a domestic crisis with far-reaching consequences. Despite the conclusion of 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) faced ever harsher repression under the rule of Francis I's son King Henry II. After Henry II's death in a joust, the country was ruled by his widow Catherine de' Medici
Catherine de' Medici
and her sons Francis II, Charles IX and 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.[12] The Wars of Religion culminated in the War of the Three Henrys in which Henry III assassinated Henry de Guise, leader of the Spanish-backed 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 (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
Edict of Nantes
(1598), which guaranteed freedom of private worship and civil equality.[13] Early Modern period[edit] Main article: Early modern France Colonial France[edit] Main article: New France

Louis XIII, by Philippe de Champaigne, 1647.

France's pacification under 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 and penetrated the North American Great Lakes
Great Lakes
and Mississippi, established plantation economies in the West Indies
West Indies
and extended their trade contacts in the Levant
and enlarged their merchant marine. Thirty Years' War[edit] Henry IV's son Louis XIII and his minister (1624–1642) Cardinal Richelieu, elaborated a policy against Spain and the Holy Roman Empire during the Thirty Years' War
Thirty Years' War
(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
Anne of Austria
and her minister Cardinal Mazarin
Cardinal Mazarin
experienced a civil uprising known as the Fronde
(1648–1653) which expanded into a Franco-Spanish War (1653–59). The Treaty of the Pyrenees
Treaty of the Pyrenees
(1659) formalised France's seizure (1642) of the Spanish territory of Roussillon
after the crushing of the ephemeral Catalan Republic and ushered a short period of peace.[14] Administrative structures[edit] Main article: Ancien Régime

Provinces in 1789.

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 late Valois and Bourbon dynasties. The administrative and social structures of the Ancien Régime
Ancien Régime
were the result of years of state-building, legislative acts (like the Ordinance of Villers-Cotterêts), internal conflicts and civil wars, but they remained a confusing patchwork of local privilege and historic differences until the French Revolution brought about a radical suppression of administrative incoherence. Louis XIV, the Sun King[edit] Main article: Louis XIV of France

Louis XIV, by Hyacinthe Rigaud, 1701

For most of the reign of 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
Royal Navy
that rivalled 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", 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 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.[15] 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.[16] 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 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. Scores of Protestants then fled France, (following "Huguenots" 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.[17] In November 1700, the Spanish king 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, 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 (1500–58), of the Holy Roman Empire
Holy Roman Empire
(German First Reich), Spain, and the 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.[18]

Louis XV, by Hyacinthe Rigaud, 1730

Dissent and revolution[edit] Main article: French Revolution The reign (1715–74) of 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 1733–35. 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.[19] 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
French people
shed few tears at his passing. While France
had not yet experienced the Industrial Revolution
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.

Louis XVI, by Antoine-François Callet, 1775

Upon Louis XV's death, his grandson Louis XVI
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.[20] With the country deeply in debt, Louis XVI
Louis XVI
permitted the radical reforms of Turgot and 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 Calonne and 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.[21] On the eve of the French Revolution of July 1789, France
was in a profound institutional and financial crisis, but the ideas of the Enlightenment had begun to permeate the educated classes of society.[22] Limited monarchy[edit] Main article: Kingdom of France
(1791–1792) 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
in a Revolution gone berserk, was finally brought to a shattering end with the "guillotined" execution (beheading) in the public square of the "Place de la Revolution" of Louis XVI
Louis XVI
on Monday, January 21, 1793, which was followed by the infamous "Reign of Terror", mass executions and the provisional "Directory" form of republican government, and the eventual beginnings of twenty-five years of reform, upheaval, dictatorship, wars and renewal, with the various Napoleonic Wars. Restoration[edit] Main article: Bourbon Restoration

Louis XVIII by Robert Lefèvre
Robert Lefèvre

Charles X by Thomas Lawrence
Thomas Lawrence

The monarchy was briefly restored following the successive events of the French Revolution
French Revolution
(1789–99), and the First French Empire
First French Empire
under Napoleon (1804–1814/15) – when a coalition of European powers restored by arms the monarchy to the heirs of the House of Bourbon
House of Bourbon
in 1814. However the deposed Emperor Napoleon I
Napoleon I
returned triumphantly to Paris
from his exile in Elba
and ruled France
for a short period known as the Hundred Days. When a Seventh European Coalition deposed Napoleon after the Battle of Waterloo in 1815, the Bourbon monarchy was once again restored. The Count of Provence, brother of the Louis XVI, who was guillotined in 1793, was crowned as Louis XVIII, nicknamed "The Desired". Louis XVIII tried to conciliate the legacies of the Revolution and Ancien Régime both, also permitting the formation of a Parliament and constitutional Charter, usually "Charte octroyée" ("Granted Charter"). His reign was characterized by disagreements between the Doctrinaires, liberal thinkers who supported the Charter and rising bourgeoisie, and the Ultra-royalists, aristocrats and clergymen who totally refused the Revolution's heritage. However, the peace was granted by and statesmen like Talleyrand and the Duke of Richelieu, as well as King's moderation and prudent intervention.[23][24] In 1823, the liberal agitations in Spain brought to a French intervention on the royalist's side, who permitted to King Ferdinand VII to reject the Constitution. However, the work of Louis XVIII was frustrated when, after his death in 16 September 1824, his brother the Count of Artois
became King under the name of Charles X. Charles X was a strong reactionary who supported ultra-royalists and Catholic Church. Under his reign, the censorship of newspapers was reinforced, the Anti-Sacrilege Act passed and compensations to French Émigré were increased. However, there were also the intervention in the Greek Revolution and the first phase of the conquest of Algeria. The absolutist tendencies of the King were disliked by Doctrinaire majority in the Chamber of Deputies, that in 18 March 1830 sent and cordial address to the King, remembering to him his vote on the Charter. However, Charles X received this address as a veiled threat, and in 25 July of the same year, he emanated the St. Cloud Ordinances, a plot to reduce Parliament powers and re-establish an absolute rule.[25] The opposition reacted with riots in Parliament and barricades in Paris, that erupteds in the July Revolution.[26] The King abdicated, such as his son the Prince Louis Antoine, in favour to his grandson Count of Chambord, nominatin his cousin the Duke of Orléans as regent.[27] However, it was too late, and the liberal opposition won over the monarchy. Aftermath and July Monarchy[edit] Main article: July Monarchy

Louis Philippe I
Louis Philippe I
by François Gérard
François Gérard

On 9 August 1830, the Chamber of Deputies elected Louis Philippe, Duke of Orléans as "King of the French": for the first time since French Revolution, the King reigned on a people and not on a country. The Bourbon white flag was substituted with the French tricolour,[28] and a new Charter was introduced in August 1830.[29] The conquest of Algeria continued, and new settlements were established in the Gulf of Guinea, Gabon, Madagascar, Mayotte
and also put Tahite under protectorate.[30] However, despite the initial reforms, Louis Philippe was little different than his predecessors. The old nobility was replaced by urban bourgeoisie, and the working class was excluded from voting.[31] Louis Philippe appointed notable bourgeois as Prime Minister, like banker Casimir Périer, academic François Guizot, general Jean-de-Dieu Soult, and thus obtained the nickname of "Citizen King" (Roi Bourgeois). The July Monarchy
July Monarchy
was beset by corruption scandals and financial crisis. The opposition of the King was composed of Legitimists, supporting the Count of Chambord, Bourbon claimant to the Throne, and of Bonapartists and 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,[32] riots and seditions erupted in Paris
and later all France, resulting in the February Revolution. The 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 Second Republic was proclaimed.[33] Despite later attempts to re-establish the Kingdom in the 1870s, during the Third Republic, the original French monarchy never returned. Territories and provinces[edit] Further information: Territorial evolution of France

Western Francia
during the time of Hugh Capet. The royal domain is shown in blue

The kingdom of France
in 1030 (royal domain in light blue)

Territorial development under Philip August (Philip II), 1180–1223

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", 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, 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 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 Orleans

Direct vassals of the French king in the 10th to 12th centuries:

County of Champagne
County of Champagne
(to the royal domain in 1316) County of Blois
County of Blois
(to the royal domain in 1391) Duchy of Burgundy
Duchy of Burgundy
(until 1477, then divided between France
and the Habsburgs) County of Flanders
(to Burgundy in 1369) Duchy of Bourbon (1327–1523)

Acquisitions during the 13th to 14th centuries:

Duchy of Normandy
(1204) County of Tourain (1204) County of Anjou
County of Anjou
(1225) County of Maine
County of Maine
(1225) County of Auvergne
County of Auvergne
(1271) County of Toulouse
County of Toulouse
(1271), including:

County of Quercy County of Rouergue

County of Rodez

County of Gevaudan Viscounty of Albi Marquisat of Gothia

County of Champagne
County of Champagne
(to the royal domain in 1316) Dauphiné
(1349), hereditary possession of the kings of France, to be held by the heir apparent, but technically not part of the kingdom of France
because it remained nominally part of the Holy Roman Empire. County of Blois
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
Hundred Years' War

Duchy of Aquitaine
Duchy of Aquitaine
(Guyenne), including:

County of Poitou County of La Marche County of Angoulême County of Périgord

County of Velay

County of Saintonge Viscounty of Limousin Lordship of Issoudun Lordship of Déols Duchy of Gascogne
Duchy of Gascogne

County of Agenais

Duchy of Bretagne
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
Duchy of Burgundy
(1477) Pale of Calais
Pale of Calais
(1558) Kingdom of Navarre
(1620) Alsace: Peace of Westphalia
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
Treaty of the Pyrenees
1659) Free County of Burgundy
County of Burgundy
(1668, 1679) French Hainaut
French Hainaut
(1679) Principality of Orange
Principality of Orange
(1713) Duchy of Lorraine
Duchy of Lorraine
(1766) French conquest of Corsica (1769) Comtat Venaissin
Comtat Venaissin

See also[edit]

Kingdom of France

Part of a series on the

History of France


Palaeolithic Mesolithic Neolithic Copper Age Bronze Age Iron Age


Greek colonies  

Celtic Gaul   until 50 BC

Roman Gaul 50 BC – 486 AD

Early Middle Ages


Merovingians 481–751

Carolingians 751–987

Middle Ages

Direct Capetians 987–1328

Valois 1328–1498

Early modern

Ancien Régime

Valois-Orléans 1498–1515

Valois-Angoulême 1515–89

Bourbon 1589–1792

Long 19th century

French Revolution 1789–1799

Kingdom of France 1791–92

First Republic 1792–1804

First Empire 1804–14

Restoration 1814–30

July Monarchy 1830–1848

Second Republic 1848–52

Second Empire 1852–70

Third Republic 1870–1940

20th century

Third Republic 1870–1940

Free France Vichy France


Provisional Republic 1944–46

Fourth Republic 1946–58

Fifth Republic 1958–present



v t e

in the Middle Ages Early modern France Economic history of France List of French monarchs


^ Roger Price (2005). A Concise History of France. Cambridge University Press. p. 30.  ^ Jim Bradbury. The Capetians: Kings of France, 987–1328 (2007). ^ Stuart Airlie, "Review article: After Empire‐recent work on the emergence of post‐Carolingian kingdoms." Early Medieval Europe (1993) 2#2 pp: 153–161. ^ William W. Kibler (1995). Medieval France: An Encyclopedia. Taylor & Francis. p. 879.  ^ Peter Shervey Lewis, Later medieval France: the polity (1968). ^ Alice Minerva Atkinson, A Brief History of the Hundred Years' War (2012) ^ Joseph P. Byrne (2006). Daily life during the Black Death. Greenwood.  ^ James Russell Major, Representative Institutions in Renaissance France, 1421–1559 (1983). ^ Martin Wolfe, The fiscal system of renaissance France
(1972). ^ Philip John Yarrow, A literary history of France: Renaissance France 1470–1589 (1974) ^ Henri Zerner, Renaissance art in France: the invention of classicism (Flammarion, 2003) ^ Mack P. Holt, The French wars of religion, 1562–1629 (2005). ^ David Buisseret, Henry IV, King of France
(1990). ^ Peter H. Wilson, Europe's Tragedy: A History of the Thirty Years' War (2009). ^ William Beik, Louis XIV and Absolutism: A Brief Study with Documents (2000) ^ Ina Baghdiantz McCabe (2008). Orientalism in Early Modern France: Eurasian Trade, Exoticism, and the Ancien Régime. Berg. p. 134.  ^ John B. Wolf, Louis XIV (1974) ^ Daniel Roche, France
in the Enlightenment (1998) ^ Colin Jones, The Great Nation: France
from Louis XV to Napoleon (2003) ^ William Doyle, The French Revolution: A Very Short Introduction (2001) ^ Sylvia Neely, A Concise History of the French Revolution
French Revolution
(2008) ^ Daniel Roche, France
in the Enlightenment (1998) ^ Actes du congrès – vol. 3, 1961, p. 441 ^ Emmanuel de Waresquiel, 2003, p. 460-461 ^ Duc de Dolberg, Castellan, II, 176 (letter 30 April 1827) ^ Mansel, Philip, Paris
Between Empires (St. Martin Press, New York 2001) p.245. ^ Bulletin des lois de la République franc̜aise, Vol. 9. Imprimerie nationale. 1831.  ^ Michel Pastoureau
Michel Pastoureau
(2001). Les emblèmes de la France. Bonneton. p. 223.  ^ Dominique Barjot; Jean-Pierre Chaline; André Encrevé (2014). La France
au xixe siècle. PUF. p. 656.  ^ La France
au xixe siècle, p. 232 and 233 ^ La France
au xixe siècle, p. 202 ^ La France
au xixe siècle, p. 211 and 2012 ^ La France
au xixe siècle, p. 298 and 299

Further reading[edit]

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
France in the Middle Ages
987–1460: From Hugh Capet to Joan of Arc (1993), survey by a leader of the Annales School 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 textbook excerpt and text search; also 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; also 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 scholar excerpt and text search Le Roy Ladurie, Emmanuel. The Ancien Régime: A History of France 1610–1774 (1999), survey by leader of the Annales School 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 1700–1789 excerpt and text search Wolf, John B. Louis XIV (1968), the standard scholarly biography online edition


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 excerpts; vol 3 excerpts Pinkney, David H. "Two Thousand Years of Paris," Journal of Modern History (1951) 23#3 pp. 262–264 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

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