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Wall of the Farmers-General

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The Wall of the Farmers-General (French: Mur des Fermiers-généraux), or Octroi Wall was a Parisian city wall.


The wall was constructed from 1784 to 1791 by the Ferme générale, a vilified organization of the French monarchy that was in charge of collecting taxes from peasants. The structure was built as a means of collecting a toll on goods entering Paris at all crossing points. The unstated purpose of the toll, known as the octroi, was to combat foreign competition by increasing the price of imported goods. Surrounding Paris and outside towns such as Saint-Denis, the wall had 62 barrier-gates built in the classical style, many of which still stand today.

As the French Revolution broke out in July 1789, angry Parisians set fire to the wall in protest of the toll. In May 1791, the toll was removed and the Ferme générale was supressed by the National Assembly, one of the latter's most popular acts.


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