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Were the grievances of the 3rd Estate (prior to the French Revolution) valid?  Why or why not?

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Scott David eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Before delving deeper into the question posed, I would like to discuss a bit about the nature of the Three Estates themselves, because when we talk about them, we tend to picture something like the Nobility or the Clergy or the Third Estate as a sort of uniform collective. However, I have to ask: is this really accurate? Take the Nobility: when we talk about the Nobility, what are we really talking about? Are we talking about the high aristocracy that would gather in Versailles? The Nobility of the Robe which served as the magistrates of the Old Regime? The captains and commanders in the French armies? Impoverished feudal lords holding onto past glories? There's a wider range of experiences and perspectives than many tend to expect. This same criticism applies to the Clergy (are we talking about a Bishop or a Parish Priest) and certainly to the Third Estate, which quite explicitly covers anyone who is not either part of the Nobility or the Priesthood, and this goes beyond mere...

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larrygates eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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