Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen

(1789)

Impact

The reforms of the National Assembly dismantled the ancien régime in France. The instrument by which this was done was the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen. With the National Assembly’s decrees of August 4, 1789, the equality demanded by the bourgeois was achieved. The declaration expressed the liberal and universal goal of Enlightenment philosophers and the middle class—government by the people—with the aim of ensuring that government would exist to preserve the natural rights of the individual. The declaration struck at the Roman Catholic Church in France...

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Marquis de Lafayette (Library of Congress)

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