What are the similarities and differences between the Glorious, French and American Revolutions?  

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pnrjulius eNotes educator| Certified Educator

All three revolutions resulted in substantial changes in government and the expansion of freedom for most of the population. But while the American and French Revolutions were direct and violent revolutions in the 18th century, the Glorious Revolution was not as violent and occurred in the 17th century.

The Glorious Revolution was not completely without violence, however; there was significant fighting in Ireland and Scotland against the new Dutch king. Like the American Revolution, the Glorious Revolution involved substantial intervention by a foreign power: In the Glorious Revolution it was the Dutch, who sort of quietly invaded England, while in the American Revolution it was France which supported the American colonists. The French Revolution, on the other hand, was largely just a popular uprising with little outside support. The United States would have helped, probably, but simply wasn't in a condition to do so meaningfully.

There are more direct links between the three: Without the Glorious Revolution, the government of England would have been quite different, and the American Revolution might have gone differently. The same French government that supported the American Revolution was soon embroiled in the French Revolution, and the French Revolution borrowed many of its ideas and motivations from the success of the American Revolution.

pholland14 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

All three revolutions were against unpopular monarchs. In the 1688 Glorious Revolution, James II was deposed by William of Orange. During the American Revolution in 1776, the colonists rebelled against George III in the name of establishing self-government. The French people killed Louis XVI during the French Revolution in 1789.  

The Glorious Revolution was aided by the Netherlands, while the American colonists received help from the French. Though many Americans cheered on the French Revolution, it was largely a homegrown revolution with little outside help. The only king executed during the three revolutions was Louis XVI. George III was still a British monarch after the American Revolution though he was no longer in charge of the American colonies. The American Revolution led directly to a war that affected Spain, France, and the Netherlands. Though there was some fighting in Scotland and Ireland, there were no widespread conflicts after the Glorious Revolution. The French Revolution led to the Reign of Terror which led to the deaths of thousands of French nobles and clerics. The chaos of the French Revolution paved the way for the Napoleonic Wars. The American Revolution and the French Revolution directly affected the citizenry of America and France, while the Glorious Revolution affected only the British government.