Ancién regime

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The ancién regime (literally "old regime") is the term used to describe the absolute monarchy that ruled France prior to the French Revolution. The regime was seen by the revolutionaries (and has since widely been seen by historians) as being outmoded and unfit to rule a country that had changed a great deal since the conventions of the monarchy were established. Figures such as Louis XVI and his consort Marie Antoinette had been reported as hopelessly out of touch with the ordinary people who inhabited the country they ruled, and had little concern for their welfare or comprehension of their troubles.

More generally, the term ancién regime can be used to refer to any ruling system of a country, business or other organization that is replaced, or needs to be replaced, because it has become out of touch or ineffective.