Despite the Ancien regime's scientific and technical investment in Cordouan, it had not managed to put in place a network of lighthouses based on an entrepreneurial, English-style economic model. At a time when Europe was becoming engulfed in revolution and war, the coasts of France were very poorly lit. As the Ancien regime gave way to Revolution and then Empire, the conditions came about for a radical shift in thinking about, constructing and managing a national network of lighthouses.