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In the 3rd century BC, a Celtic tribe called the Parisii built a fortified settlement on the Ile de Cite. In 52 AD, the Parisii ere conquered by the Romans. They took over what would one day be called Paris and made it into a Gallo-Roman garrison town which they named Lutetia. A series of barbarian invasions took place during the late 2nd century. The settlement was annihilated in the middle of the 3rd century, and those inhabitants who were left fled to the island, which they soon surrounded with a thick stone wall. In the early 4th century, the settlement was renamed Paris. It was Christianized by then, and once the Roman Empire fell, Clovis I captured and occupied the settlement, designating it as his capital. On the south bank of the Seine, he founded an abbey which he dedicated to Saints Peter and Paul. It remained the capital until 584.

In the 11th century, the first guilds were formed in Paris, including the butchers' guild and the river-merchants' guild. Under the reign of Philip II during the 12th and early 13th centuries, Paris was greatly upgraded. The city wall was made larger and streets were paved.

During the 14th century, the growth of Paris was inhibited due to the Black Death (1348-49), as well as the Hundred Years' War, and the disturbances that went along with the war. In 1382, there was a tax riot which grew into a revolt and was named the "Maillotin Uprising." During the revolt, the rioters, who were armed with mauls, were ruthlessly battered, and the municipal function was suspended for the next 79 years. After the revolt of the Parisians in 1418, the Burgundians occupied Paris, followed by the Anglo-Burgundian Alliance in 1419.

In 1429, Joan of Arc failed to capture Paris. Instead, it was captured in 1436 to legitimists who welcomed King Charles VII when he arrived in 1437. In 1469, during the reign of Louis XI, the Sorbonne installed the first printing press in Paris. In 1480, beautiful private mansions began to pop up all over Paris. In 1549, Henry II started the transformation of Paris from a medieval town to a modern city.

In the mid-1500s, numerous wars broke out in France between the Huguenots and the Catholics, beginning with the Massacre of St. Bartholomew's Day in 1572, and followed by the Day of the Barricades when the Catholic League rose up against Henry III. Then there was the resistance of Parisians against Henry IV in 1589. His siege in 1590 failed, and in the end, it was his conversion to Catholicism which finally got Paris to accept him as their king.

The Italian Renaissance, the era that bridged the Medieval period to Modernity, began in the 14th century. The Italian Renaissance spread throughout the region, arriving in Paris in 1495, having been imported by the king of France, King Charles VIII after he finished invading Italy.

It had a huge impact on Paris, particularly, not not limited to, the architecture during the reign of Louis XII, and even more so during the reign of Francis I, with the famous Hotel de Ville de Paris being a fine example. Francis I also imported writers and artists including Leonardo da Vinci and Michel de Montaigne.

Humanism became a popular theme in Paris, in art, music, and even the philosophy of the people. Although there are many reasons why this happened, what appears to be one of the foremost reasons was the fact the the Church had so far been entirely unable to provide help against the Black Death.

In 1519, Caterina de' Medici was born in Florence, Italy. In 1533, at the age of 14, Caterina married Henry II of France, who was the second son of Francis I. Before she became infamous during France's Religious Wars, she brought the arts, music, science and even ballet, which was made popular in Paris.

At the end of the 18th century, with economic crisis throughout France and the complete unpopularity of King Louis XVI, uprisings were rife in Paris as well as other parts of France.

On July 11, an ally of the people, Jacques Necker, was dismissed by the King. The French citizenry was irate and began to protest, plundering and marching through the streets of Paris and other cities.

The Bastille, a medieval prison and fortress called the Bastille in Paris was a metaphor for the cruel and iron-fisted rule of the Bourbons. On July 14, 1789, the Gardes Francaises, a regiment of the Military Household of the King of France who had defected to the cause of revolution in France, stormed the Bastille, essentially beginning the French Revolution. They marched on the government in Versailles, and were generally gaining people as they marched.

The angry mob proved to be uncontrollable, and finally, the King relented and announced that he would reinstate Necker.It worked temporarily, but the beginning of the French Revolution had really already begun. Their success in Paris fueled the rest of the war.

 

 

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