Questions tagged [france]

Officially the French Republic is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands

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3answers
3k views

What did Winston Churchill mean by this quote?

What did Winston Churchill mean by the quote below? The Almighty in His infinite wisdom did not see fit to create Frenchmen in the image of Englishmen.
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Why did France surrender so quickly during ww2? [closed]

A few of my students were making fun of France's surrender to Germany during WW2. So this made me wonder why France would surrender only after a week. They had a pretty good army. They could have put ...
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Why didn't France do a better job of "politically" protecting franc-tireurs during the Franco_Prussian War?

After France lost the battle of Sedan, some of the best defenses of French territory were conducted by franc-tireurs, or what we would call snipers, operating "American Revolution" style, civilians ...
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639 views

What was the impact of race in the French Foreign Legion in the 20th century?

Lately I've been interested in the French Foreign Legion and found that it's somewhat difficult to find information about racial topics on the subject. Were for example blacks allowed to serve, and if ...
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How direct was the Enlightenment's role in the French Revolution?

John Thomson, in his book "Europe after Napoleon", argues that the Enlightenment had little direct role in creating the conditions for revolution. Neither the thinkers prescribed revolution nor the ...
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Why did physicians recommend curing the "dancing plague" with more dancing?

The Dancing Plague of 1518 was an event in which nearly 400 people in Strasbourg danced for days on end, some even dying of exhaustion or other causes. One section of the Wikipedia article has me ...
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In regards to Vichy vs Free France, what was the status of Saint Martin and Saint Barthelemy?

The wikipedia article for Vichy France has a pretty good map, a low-res version of which I'll put here: The map shows which territories were originally Vichy, and when they changed to Free French ...
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Did French people in 19th century not bathe every day?

I am currently watching Ikoku Meiro No Croissant episode 4. In this episode, Yune tried to take a bath, but it didn't work out nicely. So in the next morning, Claudel-san said that: Only rich ...
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Why didn’t the Franco-Belgian accord of 1920 lead to extending the construction of the Maginot line along the Belgium-Netherlands border?

The Franco-Belgian Accord, which lasted from 1920 until October 1936 when Belgium declared itself neutral, included an article which 'discussed greater integration of frontier defenses' (according to ...
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Was Voltaire actually present at the British Raid on Lorient in 1746, which was attended by David Hume?

Voltaire wrote a satirical account of the raid at which Hume himself was personally in attendance with General St Clair. However, it is difficult to find out if Voltaire was actually an eyewitness ...
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Please outline how Philip II gained Normandy from the Third Crusade

I saw a video which summarized this, but now I can't find anything close to it. I believe that Philip made some type of agreement with Richard Lionheart before they went on the Crusades. Phillip came ...
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Are there equivalents of the Domesday Book for other (French or German) duchies?

Is the Domesday Book a one-off census in the wake of the Norman conquest? One can imagine that William wanted an accurate feudal picture of his new kingdom but was it the norm? Did other dukes and ...
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During the 1850’s and 60’s, was the free North (and its cause in the U.S. Civil War) considered more virtuous than the slave-holding South?

During the 1850’s and 60’s, was the free North (and its cause in the U.S. Civil War) considered more virtuous than the slave-holding South? Do we find authors or politicians in the U.K. or France ...
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What role did 17th c. luxury manufacturing play in the industrialization?

The luxury industry boomed with Louis XIV and his heirs. He made it mandatory for the nobles to invest their fortunes in the French luxury industry by following the latest fashion that the king ...
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What were the major imports and exports of Germany and France from 1850-1915?

Background: I've been doing some digging on nineteenth century trade, and so far have found this list of Britain's major imports to be an extremely helpful big picture guide. Sadly, I've yet to google ...
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248 views

Major power shift in Gaul circa 350 B.C

I realize this is a little before history and therefore interpretive. I recall reading something about a shift that took place in Gaul, some time before the Romans came there. It may have been around ...
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Historiography and the uses of history in the Second French Empire?

The Pre(r)amble: Over the past few months I've gotten interested in the development of history and historiography in Victorian England, and how the Victorians saw themselves reflected in and ...
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What were the Lines of Ne Plus Ultra in the War of the Spanish Succession?

After reading another biography of Marlborough, I am annoyed by the fact the authors mention but do not describe the Lines of Ne Plus Ultra. They make it sound (I have read Chandler and Konstam) as if ...
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331 views

Origin of French electoral tie-breaking mechanism (oldest candidate wins)

The French Code électoral specifies that ties be broken by giving the oldest candidate the win. (At least in certain elections. See for example L126, L262, L338, LO512.) What is the historical origin ...
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393 views

In modern terms (for example the 2017 US dollar), how much purchasing power is 50,000 (French) Francs in 1829?

Not simply a conversion of money, as even independent of inflation, the value of basics like bread and such change over time. I am reading "The Count of Monte Cristo" and a character has just remarked ...
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How effective were the forces of the French Provisional Government compared to the other allies?

How effective were the French fighting forces after the creation of the Provisional Government of the Fourth French Republic on June 3rd 1944? Ways to answer this: How did the French officers and ...
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Was Napoleon's General Joachim Murat of Turkish descent?

Joachim Murat was a General allegiant to Napoleon and very successfull in his military career. Though his very German first name I wondered if he has Turkish origin too because his second name ...
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Why was immigration from France to the United States lower than from some other countries?

Large waves of immigrants to the United States arrived from various European countries at different times in history, including Irish, Germans, Scottish, Poles, Russians and some lesser waves from ...
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Did the Sword of the Republic really fall from the Arc de Triomphe on the first day of the Battle of Verdun?

According to several sites - none of which offer sources or citations - the Arc De Triomphe de l'Étoile was damaged on or near the same day that the Battle of Verdun began in February 1916. These ...
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Was Falkenhayn the first commander to recommend defeating an enemy by bleeding them to death?

In his book The Price of Glory: Verdun 1916, Alistair Horne describes the memorandum introducing Erich Von Falkenhayn's plan to compel France to throw all its men into the defense of Verdun, because (...
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How did one's statistical chance of survival as a hidden Jew change during the course of the Nazi occupation of northern France?

A Jewish relative who had grown up in Vienna fled from Germany to France to escape persecution. Then Germany invaded France, and this relative went into hiding. He and his wife hid successfully ...
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Louis XIV of France, "L'État, c'est moi", and the royal 'we' [closed]

(Maybe should be in the French Language community instead.) Louis XIV famously allegedly said "L'État, c'est moi". But wouldn't he (at least hypothetically) have used the royal 'we', i.e., "L'État, c'...
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Which king was this?

I believe he was a French king who ruled shortly before the Renaissance, but I'm probably wrong. The story goes like this: A knowledgeable courtier reported to the king that there was in his kingdom ...
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Did the French Resistance kill civilians?

During the second world war, did the French Resistance kill civilian or paramilitary targets? And if so, how often did this happen? Additionally, were there any murders of collaborators after the ...
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Why do French houses have exterior window shutters? [closed]

One of the things tourists notice about French houses is the presence of exterior window shutters: Why do French houses have exterior window shutters? When did they first appear in France? Are they ...
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Did 17th Cent. French Gentlemen Necessarily Use a Scabbard for Dress Swords?

I'm costuming a show that takes place in the 17th century, Paris, "Cavalier" period, as far as costumes go. I can't seem to find a conclusive answer regarding whether the gentlemen need to have a ...
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When did French become the official language of France? [closed]

While French did exist in France and differed depending on areas, it was not the official language. When did it become so ?
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371 views

Why did the Capetian kings of France come into conflict with the Roman church?

Beginning around 1250, the monarchs of France slowly rolled toward severe conflict with the Church of Rome; this culminated in 1300 with Pope Boniface being arrested by King Philip. France, however, ...
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Which Allied forces held the French-Italian border from Operation Dragoon to the end of WWII in Europe?

Since the Germans and their puppet state the Italian Social Republic continued to hold northern Italy almost to the end of the war, it was necessary for the Allies to man the fortifications on the ...
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857 views

With what weapons were the towers of the Bastille armed?

I am researching the Bastille for a project in which I have to depict the Royal soldiers that stood on the towers during the French Revolution. Specifically, I am looking for the types of weapons ...
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What was the Sully wing in the Louvre originally?

I'm trying to find an exact idea of what the state of the Louvre was in 1677 during the reign of Louis XIV and the beginning of the Poisons Affair, particularly the Sully wing. Would it have still ...
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Why is Napoleon III seen as a bad leader?

I'm asking that because, with the exception of the defeats against Prussia and Mexico, he succeeded to raise France as a fully industrial nation, gave some rights to the workers (like the right of ...
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1answer
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Why didn't the English overrun France when the king was their captive?

John II was captured after the Battle of Poitiers in 1356 and taken to Britain. Why did they wait and ransom him only to fight the French again? The ransom was 4 million pounds, but that could be ...
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Why did Guinea vote so differently in the 1958 French constitutional referendum?

In the 1958 French constitutional referendum, 79.3% of Metropolitan France and 82.3% of the territories voted in favor of the constitution. Out of the latter, votes in favor ranged from 64.40% in ...
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Were some categories of French-Jewish people treated better by Vichy anti-Jewish laws

Even during WW2, some German Jews managed to stay in Germany without being imprisoned (although they were forced to live in special housing for Jews under uncomfortable circumstances) for example ...
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266 views

When did Napoleon start to be regarded as a French national hero? [closed]

Napoleon was a very controversial figure at the time of his death. A large percentage of French were monarchists and pro-Bourbons. Many others were Republicans or Socialists who were against personal ...
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Why wasn't there more resistance to the French revolution by the army?

Reading about the French revolution in 1789, none of the readily available Sources (Wikipedia history.com encyclopedia.com) mentions much resistance to the revolution by the army, even though "The ...
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Could prisoners be pardoned in 1832 France under the July Monarchy?

For instance, could inspector Javert in "Les Miserables" have avoided his dilemma by asking for Jean Valjean to be pardoned by the French king and/or government? Would the king and/or government have ...
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Former French PM Blum was in Buchenwald -- what is known about his life there?

To me it is interesting that he received special treatment rather than immediate execution. He was considered extremely valuable perhaps as a hostage. Wondering any details about how and why he was ...
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Is the Loi Lamine Gueye- law n ° 46-940 of May 7, 1946 enacted by the French Parliament active even today?

How many countries(former French colonies) have annulled this? And, has this been annulled by France as well after the dissolution of French Union?
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Where can I find documents on the 1992 fight between French soldiers and Somalian fighters?

I read in this French blog that before the battle of Mogadishu in 1993, French soldiers did fight successfully and manage to achieve their mission in June 1992 during the Oryx Operation (They were ...
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What was the Seven Years' War about? [closed]

I have become obsessed with the history of France and no one can deny that the Seven Years' War was a very important war to their history, but until the more popular wars of the last few centuries, ...
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What were the advantages and disadvantages to the creation of Vichy France, from the Nazi point of view?

After the defeat of France in 1940, Hitler concluded a deal with the French that saw the creation of Vichy France. What was the reasoning behind this resolution? Oviously there must have been some ...
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Did Napoleon plan to invade India?

In 1798 Napoleon invaded Egypt and in 1799 he invaded the Middle East. The only thing that stopped him from going further was the fortifications of Acre which he could not take. What was his plans if ...
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Why was an independant Saarland country created twice after each world war?

After World War I, some territories were removed from Germany, most of them had either a majority or a significant minority of non-german-speaking populations. The exception that comes to mind to me ...

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