The meeting of the States General, May 5, 1789, mark the beginning of the Revolution; the deputies of the third state, refusing to be cancelled by the deputies of the nobility and the clergy, require the vote per capita instead of the vote by order.
June 20, they meet in spite of the defense of the king, and swear by the oath of the Play of Palm to give a Constitution to France; the king yields, and the assembly, where the third state dominates, takes the name of constituent Assembly.
But the nobility prepares with resistance; the people of Paris, which fears a coup d'etat of the king against the Parliament, rise, seize the Bastille, which it regards as the symbol of Ancien Régime (July 14), and adopt the Tricolour like emblem of the Revolution.
The army is shown little laid out to fight Paris; the king still yields, gives up the coup d'etat, and accepts the tricolour rosette (July 16).
The revolutionary movement extends to the provincial towns and the campaigns; the privileged orders are acknowledged overcome; the ones emigrate; the others agree to the abolition of their privileges (August 1789).