Both the French and Russian revolutions occurred because of two main reasons: bad leadership and a bad economy. These factors, along with others, caused both of these revolutions. Although they were similar, they also had differences.
A difference between the two is that the Russians had an unsuccessful pre-revolution” in 1905. Another difference is that the French turned towards democracy while the Russian government became communist. In 1905, Russia had a pre-revolution that was put down by the Czar. Instead of learning from this pre-revolution, Czar Nicholas II made a very big mistake by not introducing reforms to correct the problems.
Because of his actions, the situation grew worse. In 1917, the Russians were fighting in World War I. The majority of the Russian people were weary and discontent with the way the war was going and with the Czar’s rule. This discontent, along with economic hardships, caused riots and demonstrations to break out. The Czar called for the army to put down the revolution as they did in 1905.
The army joined the revolt and the Czar was kicked out of power soon afterwards. A temporary government was set up to decide on what kind of government Russia was going to set up. Two political parties were established. The Bolsheviks were one of the two. The leader of the Bolshevik party was a man named Lenin. Lenin firmly believed in the theories and ideas of Karl Marx.
With his slogan of Bread, Peace, and Land,” Lenin gained the support of the peasants and established a communist state in Russia. The French Revolution was also caused by a bad ruler and a bad economy. During the early 1780s, a large percentage of the annual budget went towards King Louis XVI’s lavish estate at Versailles. France had no central bank, paper currency, or ways of obtaining more money, and an outdated tax system that only taxed the poor, who had no money to begin with. Signs of revolution first appeared when the peasants stormed the fortress known as the Bastille in search of gunpowder. The Bastille incident sparked revolts throughout France, and Louis was soon deposed.
A democratic government was set up in place of the old monarchy. The doctrine called the Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen served as a basis for the revolutionary French leaders. The French set up a government in which an elected legislative group met annually. It also consisted of an elected judiciary and an executive headed by the king (who had no real power and only served as a figurehead). Both the French and Russian revolutions had similar causes but ended up with different results.
Both of these countries had different internal factors that caused their respective results. The Russians had Lenin, and the French had the Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen. Additionally, I would like to point out one more similarity between these two revolutions: both Czar Nicholas II and King Louis XVI were executed soon after the revolutionaries took power . It is strange to see how two similar countries with so many similar reasons for revolting would end up with such different governments.