The Rise of Nationalism in Europe
He was a French artist famous for prints prepared in 1948 that visualized the dream of a
world consisting of Democratic and Social Republics.
Associated with the rise of nationalism and nation states.
A feeling of oneness with the society or the state, love and devotion for the motherland and
belief in the political identity of one‟s country are the basic attributes of nationalism.
A state that establishes itself as a separate political and geographical entity and functions as a
complete and sovereign territorial unit. This concept emerged in 19th century Europe as a
result of the growth of nationalism.
A state in which sovereignty is exercised by a centralized power over a specific territory and
A system of government wherein limitless powers are vested in a single person or body. It
is a monarchical form of government in which the ruler is the absolute authority and is not
answerable to anybody.
French Revolution (1789)
It marks the beginning of nationalism.
Salient features of the French Revolution were:
France was under absolute monarchy in 1789.
The Revolution transferred the sovereignty from the monarch to the French people.
Ideas of La patrie (the fatherhood) and Le citoyen (the citizen) adopted.
New French Flag, the tricolour, adopted replacing the royal standard.
Estates General elected by citizens and renamed the National Assembly.
A centralized political system established.
Internal custom dues abolished.
Uniform weights and measures adopted.
French became the language of the nation.
French armies moved into Holland, Belgium, Switzerland and Italy in the 1790s
with a promise of liberating the people from their despotic rulers.
Ruled France from 1799 to 1815.
Assumed absolute powers in 1799 by becoming the First Consul.
Civil Code/Napoleonic Code (1804) Established equality before law.
Abolished all privileges based on birth.
Granted the right to property to French citizens.
Simplified administrative divisions.
Abolished feudal system and freed peasants from serfdom.
Removed restrictions on guilds in towns.
Improved transport and communication.
Militarily, Napoleon proved to be an oppressor for the people of the conquered
territories. Taxation and censorship were imposed and military services were made
Europe in the mid-18th Century
No nation states because Europeans never saw themselves as sharing a common
identity or culture. E.g., The Habsburg Empire of Austria–Hungary comprised
French, Italian and German-speaking people.
Europe was broadly divided into two classes during this period namely:
The land owning class.
Numerically small, but dominated Europe, both socially and politically.
Spoke French which was considered the language of the high society.
Families were connected through marriage.
Tenants and small land owners who worked as serfs.