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♛ HISTORY MEME ♛ [6/6] REVOLUTIONS: 1907 Romanian Peasants' Revolt

The 1907 Romanian Peasants’ Revolt took place in March 1907 in Moldavia and it quickly spread, reaching Wallachia. The main cause was the discontent of the peasants about the inequity of land ownership, which was in the hands of just a few large landowners. Most large landowners preferred to live in the cities and did not want to bother with the administration of their properties. Therefore, they leased their domains to intermediaries lessors, who in turn would administer the land and try to make a good profit in a short time. At that time, peasants formed up to 80 percent of the Romanian population and about 60 percent of them owned small crops, or no land at all, while the large landowners owned more than half of the arable land.

The revolt began on the lands administered by one lessor, Mochi Fischer, in the village of Flămânzi (the name seems predestined, as it literally means “hungry men”) due to Fischer’s refusal to renew the leasing with the local peasants. The fear of remaining out of work, combined with the activities of some alleged Austro-Hungarian instigators, led the peasants to revolt. The revolt soon spread across most of Moldavia, with several landowners’ properties destroyed and many lessors killed or wounded. The Conservative government (Partidul Conservator) couldn’t handle the situation and resigned, and the Liberals (Partidul Național-Liberal) of Dimitrie Sturdza assumed power.

On 18 March a state of emergency was declared, then general mobilization, with 140,000 soldiers being recruited by 29 March. The Romanian Army began firing on the peasants; thousands of peasants perished and more than 10,000 were arrested. [x]