Who is François Pierre Guillaume Guizot?June 25, 2021
François Pierre is a French politician and historian. During the July Monarchy (1830-48), he led the pro-constitutional conservatives.
After his father was executed by the Convention in 1794, he immigrated to Geneva with his mother. After returning to Paris in 1805, he studied law. He entered anti-Napoléonian literary circles. In 1812 he became professor of history at the University of Paris. XVIII of the Bourbon dynasty. Supporting the accession of Louis (1814), Guizot emerged during this period as an active defender of the constitutional monarchy and a prominent member of the group called the Doctrineists. He presented the group’s views in his work Du gouvernement représentatif et de l’état actuel de la France (1816; On Representative Government and the Current Situation of France). In 1814, with the support of Royer Collard, he was appointed secretary general of the interior ministry, as he was a staunch royalist.
Returning to the university in 1820, he was mainly engaged in historical studies between 1820-30. During this period, Histoire de la révolution d’Angleterre (1826-27; History of the English Revolution), Histoire de la civilisation en Europe (1828, 3 volumes; History of Civilization in Europe) and Histoire de la civilisation en France (1829-32, 5 volume; History of Civilization in France).
Guizot, who was among the leaders of the conservative factions during the July Monarchy, and his historian colleague and liberal rival, Adolphe Thiers, played a decisive role on the opposite sides of the political struggle. Guizot, during his ministry of education from 1832-37, enacted the law named after him (1833), which gave all citizens the possibility of secular primary education. In 1940, he briefly served as France’s ambassador to the United Kingdom. After the fall of Thiers’ cabinet, he was appointed foreign minister. He followed a policy that looked after the interests of wealthy bourgeois and capitalists. Believing that political responsibilities should be left to the elite of society, Guizot opposed changes in the voting system and masterfully ruled the vast majority who did not object to anything. During this eight-year tenure, he was particularly successful in Franco-British relations; He advocated the making of the Entente cordiale with Great Britain. He tried to preserve the status quo in Europe, which was agitated by revolutions, by approaching the conservative forces, especially Matternich. But the government could not show the same success in internal affairs; The political and financial scandals that followed the severe economic depression of 1846-47 led to an increase in anti-government demonstrations. Guizot opposed all electoral and parliamentary reforms, even though France was in a severe economic crisis, which also left bourgeois circles in a difficult position.
Guizot was forced to resign from his post on February 23, 1848; The next day, the kingdom government collapsed. Despite the abdication of King Louis-Philippe in favor of his grandson, the provisional government formed by the insurgents who seized the House of Representatives declared a republic.
Guizot attempted to rally the anti-republican opposition in 1849, but without success. He could not get rid of political loneliness until the end of his life. During this period, L’Histoire de la France depuis les temps les plus reculés jusqu’en 1789 (1872-76, 5 volumes; History of France from the Beginning to 1789) and his memoirs, Mémoires pour servir à l’Histoire de mon temps ( He wrote many books, including 1858-67 Memoirs to Contribute to the History of My Age.
Who is Guillaume Guizot?