How Far Did the Establishment of the Empire of Napoleon 1 Mark the End of Revolution in France?

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HOW FAR DID THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE EMPIRE OF NAPOLEON 1 MARK THE END OF REVOLUTION IN FRANCE? The bourgeoisie made a grand entrance onto the French political scene by masterminding that famous revolution which started in 1789. With their rallying call for liberty, equality and fraternity, France and indeed Europe appeared to be on the threshold of a new political and social dispensation where all people could live together in a climate of equality, dignity and mutual respect. It would also be possible for anyone to rise to any position solely on merit regardless of circumstances of birth or any other form of privilege. For all its high-sounding and well-meaning ideals, the revolutionary episode seemed to succeed only in bringing out all that was negative about the French and Europeans in general especially as it unleashed the twin evils of civil and international conflict. The ensuring chaos set the stage for the advent of the empire of Napoleon 1. Ruling with an iron fist in France and waging war in Europe, Napoleon’s reign has attracted mixed reviews from historians and critics over the centuries. He has been praised for reforms that left a lasting positive imprint on the socio-political landscape of France and Europe. Concepts such as the ‘careers open to talent’ and the Code Napoleon are prime examples of such reforms. Some have however poured cold water over his achievements claiming instead that the advent of his empire spelt the death sentence for the revolution and all the good it stood for. While there maybe some truth in those assertions, it would be a gross exaggeration to claim that he completely destroyed the revolution. This essay seeks to show that Napoleon 1 did not end the revolution however much his reign was negative. It is necessary to clarify what the revolution really was before Napoleon is brought to judgement. What should we consider as
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