Was the American Revolution really revolutionary? Explain why or why not.

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I would argue that the American Revolution was most certainly revolutionary. A group of colonial subjects in a far-flung corner of the British Empire came together to fight—and defeat—what was at that time the world's largest military power. This was virtually unprecedented in the annals of history. Additionally, once the American colonists defeated the might of Great Britain, they set about establishing a new nation almost from scratch. Despite certain family resemblances, the American Revolution was radically different from the French Revolution. The American colonists were not simply getting rid of an old regime; they were building a nation. This was not just any nation; this was a nation founded on the principles of liberty and democracy. Again, there was almost no historical precedent for this. With the birth of the United States, British subjects were turned into American citizens, active participants in a newly-established Republic. It is difficult to see how such radical change can be seen as anything but revolutionary.

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