How does a revolution come about?


A revolution is a big change. The word comes from Latin and means something like "rotation". It was already used at the end of the Middle Ages: In astronomy, it meant the revolutions of the planets around the sun.

Revolution was later used to change politics. A ruler was changed, or new people came to power at all. A country then got a lot of new laws, or you had other ideas about how the country should be governed.

The expression revolution was best known through the French Revolution. It started in 1789 and made the country more modern. However, it also led to much violence and wars. In the more than 100 years that followed, many people dreamed of a new revolution and just as many feared it. There have been some minor revolutions.

The communists also wanted a revolution. Its great success was the October Revolution of 1917, which turned Russia into the Soviet Union. Many people died as a result of this revolution, although supposedly all people should have equal rights. The Russian revolutionaries wanted other countries to have such a revolution, but most of them could resist.

The word is often used outside of politics. When more and more factories sprang up in Europe in the 19th century, it was the industrial revolution. Today you can even hear the word “revolution” in advertisements when something supposedly new is offered.