This announcement unleashed a flood of political opinion. Hundreds of essays and political pamphlets were published and circulated. Many speculated about the composition, procedure and possible outcomes of the Estates General.
Text What is necessary that a nation should subsist and prosper? Individual effort and public functions. All individual efforts may be included in four classes: In this manner human industry succeeds in perfecting the gifts of nature, and the crude product increases twofold, tenfold, one hundred-fold in value.
Such are the efforts of the second class. This species of utility characterizes the third class. This fourth class embraces all those who stand between the most distinguished and liberal professions and the less esteemed services of domestics.
Such are the efforts which sustain society. Who Sieyes and the mentality of the third estate them forth?
Public functions may be classified equally well, in the present state of affairs, under four recognized heads: It would be superfluous to take them up one by one, for the purpose of showing that everywhere the Third Estate attends to nineteen-twentieths of them, with this distinction; that it is laden with all that which is really painful, with all the burdens which the privileged classes refuse to carry.
Do we give the Third Estate credit for this? That this might come about, it would be necessary that the Third Estate should refuse to fill these places, or that it should be less ready to exercise their functions. The facts are well known. Meanwhile they have dared to impose a prohibition upon the order of the Third Estate.
They have said to it: If this exclusion is a social crime against the Third Estate; if it is a veritable act of hostility, could it perhaps be said that it is useful to the public weal?
If it discourages those whom it rejects, is it not well known that it tends to render less able those whom it favors? It is not understood that every employment from which free competition is removed, becomes dearer and less effective?
In setting aside any function whatsoever to serve as an appanage for a distinct class among citizens, is it not to be observed that it is no longer the man alone who does the work that it is necessary to reward, but all the unemployed members of that same caste, and also the entire families of those who are employed as well as those who are not?
Is it not to be remarked that since the government has become the patrimony of a particular class, it has been distended beyond all measure; places have been created, not on account of the necessities of the governed, but in the interests of the governing, etc.
Has not attention been called to the fact that this order of things, which is basely and—I even presume to say—beastly respectable with us, when we find it in reading the History of Ancient Egypt or the accounts of Voyages to the Indies, is despicable, monstrous, destructive of all industry, the enemy of social progress; above all degrading to the human race in general, and particularly intolerable to Europeans, etc.
But I must leave these considerations, which, if they increase the importance of the subject and throw light upon it, perhaps, along with the new light, slacken our progress. It suffices here to have made it clear that the pretended utility of a privileged order for the public service is nothing more than a chimera; that with it all that which is burdensome in this service is performed by the Third Estate; that without it the superior places would be infinitely better filled; that they naturally ought to be the lot and the recompense of ability and recognized services, and that if privileged persons have come to usurp all the lucrative and honorable posts, it is a hateful injustice to the rank and file of citizens and at the same time a treason to the public weal.
Who then shall dare to say that the Third Estate has not within itself all that is necessary for the formation of a complete nation? It is the strong and robust man who has one arm still shackled. If the privileged order should be abolished, the nation would be nothing less, but something more.
Therefore, what is the Third Estate? Everything; but an everything shackled and oppressed. What would it be without the privileged order?
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Everything, but an everything free and flourishing. Nothing can succeed without it, everything would be infinitely better without the others. It is not sufficient to show that privileged persons, far from being useful to the nation, cannot but enfeeble and injure it; it is necessary to prove further that the noble order does not enter at all into the social organization; that it may indeed be a burden upon the nation, but that it cannot of itself constitute a nation.
In the first place, it is not possible in the number of all the elementary parts of a nation to find a place for the caste of nobles. I know that there are individuals in great number whom infirmities, incapacity, incurable laziness, or the weight of bad habits render strangers to the labors of society.
The exception and the abuse are everywhere found beside the rule. But it will be admitted that the less there are of these abuses, the better it will be for the State.
The worst possible arrangement of all would be where not alone isolated individuals, but a whole class of citizens should take pride in remaining motionless in the midst of the general movement, and should consume the best part of the product without bearing any part in its production.
Such a class is surely estranged to the nation by its indolence. The noble order is not less estranged from the generality of us by its civil and political prerogatives. What is a nation? A body of associates, living under a common law, and represented by the same legislature, etc.Start studying What is the Third Estate?
By Emmanuel Sieyes. Learn vocabulary, terms, and more with flashcards, games, and other study tools. Emmanuel Joseph Sieyès (3 May – 20 June ), most commonly known as the Abbé Sieyès (French:), was a French Roman Catholic abbé, clergyman and political ashio-midori.com was one of the chief political theorists of the French Revolution, and also played a prominent role in the French Consulate and First French Empire..
His pamphlet Succeeded by: François Barthélemy. The Third Estate embraces then all that which belongs to the nation; and all that which is not the Third Estate, cannot be regarded as being of the nation. What is the Third Estate? It is the whole.
The estates of the realm, or three estates, were the broad orders of social hierarchy used in Christendom (Christian Europe) from the medieval period to early modern ashio-midori.coment systems for dividing society members into estates developed and evolved over time.
The best known system is the French Ancien Régime (Old . The Third Estate was a social class which was established by Emmanuel Joseph Sieyes in , right before the French revolution. This Third Estate had goals of .
Third Estate, French Tiers État, in French history, with the nobility and the clergy, one of the three orders into which members were divided in the pre-Revolutionary Estates-General.