Political Systems Thematic Essay

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History and culture of many nations and societies have been affected by political systems. In the 1600s-1700s two political systems, absolute monarchy of France and the constitutional monarchy of England, have affected Europe. Absolute monarchy is when a ruler rules with absolute, or total, power. A constitutional monarchy is when laws limit the power of the monarch so they cannot rule absolutely. These two political systems affected not only their own country, but the whole of Europe as well. Mainly under the influences of the two leaders Louis XIV, Charles II, James II, Prince William, and Queen Mary.

One of the most known rulers that ruled with absolute power in France was Louis XIV. Louis ruled for many years and was considered one of the most powerful rulers in French history. Louis often said, “L’état, c’est moi”, which means, “I am the state”. Louis ruled with absolute power, which is why he considered himself to be the embodiment of France. He used his power to rule absolutely, which was shown in the many things he did. Louis also backed up all he did by saying he had the right to rule with Divine Right, or it was as if he was a part of God, God giving him his power to rule. When Louis first became king in 1643 he was only five years old and the current leader of France was Cardinal Mazarin. People, especially nobles, hated him because he increased taxes and strengthened the central government. Violent rebellions tore France apart and many nobles even threatened young Louis’ life. Once the rebellion was over, Louis still did not forget the nobles threats and vowed to become so strong that the nobles wouldn’t be able to overpower him.

When Louis took full power of France in 1661, he was twenty-three years old and took no time in ordering commands. He weakened the power of the nobles by excluding them from his council. He increased the power of intendants, people who administered justice and collected the taxes. To strengthen central power, Louis...
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