Abbé Sieyès, the 18th century French clergyman, authored the pamphlet “What Is the Third Estate?" which was a proclamation to ennoble the power of France’s general populace, known in the parlance of the Middle Ages and early modern Europe as the third estate; the first estate being the French clergy and the second estate the nobility. Each estate of the realm represented the major factional influences in the country and their hierarchy represented their proximity to God. Sieyès pamphlet proclaimed that France’s third estate was the only estate by saying, “the third estate, then, comprises everything appertaining to the nation; and whatever is not the third estate may not be regarded as being of the nation. What is the third estate? Everything!”
Unlike 18th century Europe America’s brilliant system of government, grounded in equal rights and individual opportunity, does not permit a group of societal elitists to delineate a social order of human value and contiguity to God. But America has parallels to middle age European social orders with its own version of the three estates, which are byproducts of its political social structure.