Q:

Why was the fall of the Bastille important to the French people?

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Quick Answer

The Fall of the Bastille on July 14, 1789 did not start out as an important event, but by the end of the attack it became a turning point for the French Revolution because it forced the king to pay attention to the commoners and led to numerous changes of the Revolution. The attack on the Bastille became a symbol of triumph for the Revolution. It was the moment that many called a triumph over despotism and over the king himself.

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Full Answer

There were very few prisoners actually housed in the Bastille at the time of the attack, but it was still a monumental moment. The citizens involved in the attack, and in the Revolution in general, saw the successful assault on the Bastille as a sign that their revolt and cry for change couldn't be stopped.

The French people did not come out of the battle without losses, however. There were about 100 citizens killed and eight guards at the Bastille as well. The governor and his three sons were taken prisoner, and though there were negotiations with the governor, he and his sons were later killed by beheading. Their heads were then paraded through the city on pikes. This drove many of the nobles from the city itself. All of these acts accumulated with the successful attack on the Bastille to force the king to begin making concessions to the French citizens.

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