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 Louis XVI's faults 
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
he was always to kind to people...and I think, due to his strong faith in God, he also believed of the good in every person.

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Thu Jan 01, 2009 1:04 pm
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
jolie_blon wrote:
And.... I believe he was never properly prepared for this important position.


This is absolutely correct! What was Louis XV thinking by not preparing Louis XVI for his role as King???? This boy (Louis XVI) knew upon ascending the throne that he was not prepared for the role thrust upon him. He even asked God for protection as he knew they were too young to rule. His childhood and all the losses he suffered I'm sure made him the way he was. He did not have anyone he rely on for advice when he really needed it. I also agree that he was a mere human like the rest of us. He lacked self-confidence and the ability to make hard decisions.
I firmly believe that under another King, such as Louis XIV, the revolution could not have happened because he would have cut them all down and instilled a fear that would prevent any further revolt. I also believe that had Louis XVI put a stop to the nonsense when the march on Versailles occured in October 1789 - he may have prevented the whole mess. There were people who KNEW he would not fire on his people and took advantage of the situation. A stronger man would have mowed them all down in their tracks. I do not think that Louis realized that it was him or them. He was a good man who didn't want to hurt anyone and for that he himself was forced to suffer.


Thu Jan 01, 2009 2:40 pm
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
I think the world was changing from the Enlightenment onwards - revolution was almost inevitable.

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Fri Jan 02, 2009 4:06 am
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
I do also think that change was in the air and revolution inevitable - but a stronger more decisive King may have put it off. (Possibly for the next reign to deal with.)


Fri Jan 02, 2009 12:25 pm
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
D'accord. Perhaps Antoinette could've avoided her terrible fate and lived out her life peacefully with her children. C'est la vie.....

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Sat Jan 03, 2009 3:07 am
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
Lilly wrote:
A stronger man would have mowed them all down in their tracks.

I agree with that. Qualities of a good, strong ruler and a kind person rarely match.

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Sun Jan 04, 2009 8:44 pm
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
Marija Vera wrote:
Lilly wrote:
A stronger man would have mowed them all down in their tracks.

I agree with that. Qualities of a good, strong ruler and a kind person rarely match.


Well put.


Thu Jan 08, 2009 1:48 am
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
I heard it said many years ago that, rather than happening under the most oppressive rulers, revolutions tend to occur precisely under more liberalizing rulers - Louis XVI and Alexander of Russia being two examples.

Louis XV in fact did repress, rather firmly, expressions of discontent, most memorably in responding to a Parlement (of Orleans?) which had tried to bring some of the locals' suffering to his attention. He in effect said the Parlement was exaggerating and he did not want to receive any further communications of the sort.

The really sad thing, historically, is that Louis XVI was far less oppressive or selfish than the two kings before him, but has been viewed by many as a tyrant simply because a revolution overthrew him - just as Marie-Antoinette's excesses are virtually emblematic while Mme. De Pompadour's are forgotten (by the greater part of humanity, I mean, not historians.)

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Thu Jan 08, 2009 8:57 am
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
jimcheval wrote:
I heard it said many years ago that, rather than happening under the most oppressive rulers, revolutions tend to occur precisely under more liberalizing rulers - Louis XVI and Alexander of Russia being two examples.

Louis XV in fact did repress, rather firmly, expressions of discontent, most memorably in responding to a Parlement (of Orleans?) which had tried to bring some of the locals' suffering to his attention. He in effect said the Parlement was exaggerating and he did not want to receive any further communications of the sort.

The really sad thing, historically, is that Louis XVI was far less oppressive or selfish than the two kings before him, but has been viewed by many as a tyrant simply because a revolution overthrew him - just as Marie-Antoinette's excesses are virtually emblematic while Mme. De Pompadour's are forgotten (by the greater part of humanity, I mean, not historians.)


Thank you, sir, for your excellent assessment. You are absolutely correct. I am tired of always seeing Louis dismissed as a "weak" ruler, when he did take action. Up until 1789, Louis was admired by other monarchs for his successes at war and his determination to better the lot of his people by reforms. Let us also remember that the great Napoleon, who is usually regarded as a *successful* ruler, at one point ended up being held at bay by an angry mob, followed by imprisonment and exile. And Napoleon is never described as being weak. Louis showed a great deal of courage and forgiveness throughout his trials, which to me is indicative of strength, not of weakness.

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Thu Jan 08, 2009 2:45 pm
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
I think that he wasn’t capable of handling the crises, he was definitely depressed at the time when the things were completely out of the control and I certainly can’t blame him for that. He was just a human, maybe too sensitive and insecure for his position.

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Thu Jan 08, 2009 5:51 pm
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
Marija Vera wrote:
I think that he wasn’t capable of handling the crises, he was definitely depressed at the time when the things were completely out of the control and I certainly can’t blame him for that. He was just a human, maybe too sensitive and insecure for his position.


In spite of his intense depression, he handled the crisis as humanely as possible, given the treachery he had to deal with.

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Thu Jan 08, 2009 5:55 pm
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
Therese wrote:
In spite of his intense depression, he handled the crisis as humanely as possible, given the treachery he had to deal with.


I agree. I think he was ahead of his times in terms of the way he handled his people - not willing to shoot at them even when his own safety was at risk. It's terrible that even in this day and age there are world leaders who wouldn't think twice about harming their own people.

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Thu Jan 08, 2009 9:59 pm
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
Therese wrote:
Marija Vera wrote:
I think that he wasn’t capable of handling the crises, he was definitely depressed at the time when the things were completely out of the control and I certainly can’t blame him for that. He was just a human, maybe too sensitive and insecure for his position.


In spite of his intense depression, he handled the crisis as humanely as possible, given the treachery he had to deal with.



Louis was certainly humane - which I suppose could be looked at as a fault in a ruler - because a ruler is expected to be heavy-handed and decisive when necessary. My opinion is that history's judgment of Louis (always written by the victors) is mostly taken from his behavior during the revolution. He DID do alot of really good things for his people as you stated so well. It is too bad that this is not remembered first.
It is true that he was merely human like the rest of us and I believe he was unprepared for his role as King. I look at Louis as the weak link in a chain -
and even though he may have felt strongly about some things, he lacked the ability to translate his feelings into action. Certainly no one can fault him for his intense depression, but this depression (or near breakdown) can be looked at by the outside world as a weakness.
Personally, I wonder WHY Louis didn't communicate with his people in a better way to let them know that he was not guilty of what he was accused of - Why did'nt he go out onto the balcony in October 1789 and address his people?? Why did he not try to assure them that he was on their side and would immediately take action to relieve their suffering? Why did he not INSIST that his wife and children and sister leave France before this time??
A strength of character did not energe when it was most necessary. I would have liked to see Louis stand up for himself a little bit more - and make decisions without wavering. I know that he lacked any good advisors and had no one to help giude him, But - that was all the more reason for him to take the reigns in his own hands. Sorry for the word "weak" but some aspects of LouisXVI's character do suggest this.


Sat Jan 10, 2009 1:28 pm
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
I think Louis XVI's original fault was not to uphold Maupeou's policy as far as the Parliament is concerned. He also should have supported Turgot no matter what. And Maurepas was certainly not a good choice : too conservative, too old, too cautious.


I do not think Louis XVI was weak at all, but it is patent that his policy lacked coherence. The first part of his reign was definitely promising, but then it seems that he sank into a sea of indescision. I am not sure the American war was such a good course of action, especially as it resulted in America's clinching commercial treaties with England and turning its back to France, and a quasi war with revolutionnary France.

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Wed Dec 21, 2011 9:37 am
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Post Re: Louis XVI's faults
Ludy wrote:

...and a quasi war with revolutionnary France.


??

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Wed Dec 21, 2011 1:20 pm
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