|This article may be expanded with text translated from the corresponding article in the French Wikipedia. (December 2009)|
The contributions directes were a system of four taxes, also known as the quatre vieilles, set up under the French Revolution. They were all direct taxes, willingly voted into existence by vote of the deputies, by contrast with the Ancien Régime, which mainly relied on indirect taxes.
Three of them were set up in 1790 by the National Constituent Assembly:
- the contribution foncière, on all lands ;
- the contribution mobilière, on all income not derived from commerce or 'land' (with the latter including rent and industry)
- the patente, which taxed the professions according to their external signs
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