The word “revolution” is derived from Latin revolution, which literally means “a turnaround”. In political terms, it is a fundamental change of power at the very top of the leadership ladder of the country in a relatively short span of time. Quite a few revolutions have taken place in the history of mankind and the methods and duration vary widely. Below are the ten most influential revolutions ever to have taken place in the history of the world.
10. The Haitian Revolution
During the summer of 1791, the slaves of Saint Domingue felt that enough was enough and stood up in revolt while plunging the colony into civil war in the process. Haiti got its independence in 1794 after the deaths of 100,000 blacks and 24,000 whites.
9. The Iranian Revolution
Also known as the Islamic Revolution, this series of events overthrew the Pahlavi dynasty of Iran and replaced it with the Islamic republic with Ayatollah Khomeini as the supreme leader of the country. This revolution was somewhat unique because the usual causes of revolution (defeat in war, financial crisis) were nowhere to be found.
8. Cuban Revolution
The president of Cuba Carlos Prio Socarras was overthrown by General Fulgencio Batista on March 10th 1952 and all elections were canceled. This was the time when the threat for a nuclear war was raised to an all-time high.
7. Chinese Revolutions
These were a series of political events between 1911 and 1949, which ended in a communist rule taking over the country.
6. Young Turk Revolution
This series of political upheavals took place in July 1908 and resulted in the reversal of the suspension of the Ottoman parliament. The revolution was led by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, who was himself a Young Turk. His main focus was the modernization and democratization of the primitive Islamic society.
5. Taiping Revolution
This was a large scale war which was waged from 1851 to 1864 against the army of the Qing Empire of China. According to many reliable sources, the death toll during the fifteen years of war was 20 million including civilians and army personnel.
4. The October Revolution
Also known as the Great October Socialist Revolution, this series of events was part of the Russian Revolution in 1917. Petrograd, which was the Russian capital at the time, was captured by the Bosheviks.
3. The Glorious Revolution
James II was the King of Great Britain from 1685 to 1688 and he was the person responsible for bringing the Glorious Revolution. The Irish and the French were also involved in these events as England was brought into the War of the League or Augsberg.
2. The American Revolution
This political turnaround took place during the latter half of the 18th century and the result was the joining together 13 North American colonies to break free from the British Empire. The Constitution of the United States was formed in 1788.
1. The French Revolution
The French Revolution took place from 1789 to 1799 and the result was the ousting of the absolute monarchy that occupied the top leadership thrones of France fell flat inside three years.