Covered in this encyclopedia are the people, events, and ideas that shaped the transformative political ideologies arising from the American and French Revolutions of the late eighteenth century.
By giving rise to new ideologies that in time transformed the political structure of much of the world, the American and French Revolutions stand as two of the most important political events in global history. The American establishment of a Republican government, and the gradual expansion of democracy that ensued, altered traditional political and social thought, thus shaping the later French Revolution and creating the core ethic of later American political values. The Enlightenment ideals of the French Revolution, as later spread by the armies of Napoleon, dissolved most traditional European notions of political authority. This encyclopedia offers current, detailed information on the people, events, movements, and ideas that defined the revolutions in France and America, as well as in other parts of the world during the late eighteenth-century Age of Revolutions.
Besides numerous entries on various countries of Europe whose histories were affected by the French Revolution, such as Austria, Belgium, Germany, Poland, and Russia, the many entries covering the people, events, groups, and ideologies of Revolutionary and Napoleonic France include the following: Civil Constitution of the Clergy, Georges Jacques Danton, The Directory, Guillotine, Josephine, Empress of France, Law of Suspects, The Mountain, Prairial Insurrection, Tennis Court Oath, White Terror. Besides various entries covering American colonies/states, such as Maryland, New Jersey, North Carolina, and Virginia, the numerous entries covering the figures, events, and ideologies of the American Revolution and Early Federal Period of the United States include the following: Abigail Adams, Boston Massacre, Constitutional Convention, William Franklin, Lexington and Concord, Actions at Loyalists, Massachusetts Government Act, Edmund Randolph, Signers of the Declaration of Independence. Finally, the encyclopedia offers various entries covering important revolutionary figures and movements that were active in other parts of the world during the period 1760-1815, including the following: Simon Bolivar, Dutch Revolutions, Haitian Revolution, Hispaniola, Latin American Revolutions, Mexican Revolution, Pugachev Rebellion, Toussaint l'Ouverture. Besides over 450 clearly written and highly informative entries, the encyclopedia also includes primary documents, a chronology, an extensive introductory essay, a bibliography, a guide to related topics, and a series of useful maps.