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The immediate factor which caused the outbreak of the Revolution was the bankruptcy faced by the Government.The heavy expenditure on the army during the Seven Years’ War had drained the finances of the country.
There were 600 memers of the third estate and 300 each of the first and second estates.
When Louis XVI rejected the proposal of the third estate, they walked out of the Estates-General.
The entire burden of taxation fell on the third estate. The condition of the artisans, peasants and workmen was miserable.
The peasants had to work for long hours and pay separate taxes to the Crown, to the clergy and to the nobility.
The privileged class comprising the clergy and the aristocracy formed the first estate and the second estate respectively.
These two estates enjoyed many privileges under the government and did not have to bear the burden of taxation.
French philosophers like Voltaire, Rousseau and Montesquieu inspired the people with revolutionary ideas of liberty and equality.
Montesquieu rejected the theory of the Divine Right of Kings and urged for separation of powers.
After paying all these taxes, they hardly had enough money to feed themselves.
The wealthy middle class had to pay heavy taxes and resented the privileges enjoyed by the aristocrats and the higher clergy i.e. The workers, the peasants and the middle class who suffered under the social and economic system wanted to change it.