Unit 5 – Absolutism and State-building in the 17th Century
Witches and witchcraft- witchcraft affected many lives of Europeans in the sixteenth and seventeenth century. Witchcraft was thought to be connected with the devil therefore making witchcraft heresy.
Witch trials- More than 100,000 people were prosecuted throughout Europe for witchcraft during the sixteenth and seventeenth century. Accused witches mostly confessed to witchcraft usually after intense torture. If found guilty of witchcraft, witches would be either hung or burned at the stake.
Thirty Years War
Gustavus Adolphus- He was responsible for transforming Sweden into a great Baltic power. He brought disciplined and well-equipped Swedish to northern Germany. Adolphus also was a devoted Lutheran who felt he needed to aid his coreligionists in Germany.
Peace of Westphalia- It ended the war in Germany and ensured that all the German states were free to determine their own religion (1648).
Conscripted standing armies- First developed by Gustavus Adolphus, this army had very flexible tactics and was primarily offensive.
Absolutism- The sovereign power or ultimate authority in the state rested in the hands of a king who claimed to rule by divine right.
Bishop Jacques Bossuet- He was one of the chief theorists of divine-right monarchy in the seventeenth century. He argued that government was divinely ordained so that humans could live in an organized society in his book Politics Drawn from the Very Words of Holy Scripture.
‘divine right’- The belief that power is received from God and you are responsible God only. The order of the ruler must be obeyed because it is the order of God.
Cardinals Richelieu- Cardinal Richelieu was Louis XIII’s chief minister; he initiated policies that strengthened the power of the monarchy. He eliminated the Huguenot’s military rights but kept their religious ones making them more reliable subjects.
Cardinal Mazarin- He dominated the government while Louis XIV was young. He attempted to keep Richelieu’s policies until he died in 1661.
The Fronde- (1648-1649, 1650-1652) The Fronde were revolts lead by groups of nobles who had the intentions of overthrowing Mazarin.
Louis XIV- (r.1643-1715) He took the throne at age four. At age 23 he became a powerful absolute monarch. He created a grand and majestic court at Versailles. He perfected mercantilism and increased tariffs on imports to increase welfare. He engaged in many wars to increase his military glory, but he had little success and just weakened the country.
Edict of Fontainebleau- It threw out the Edict of Nantes and provoked the destruction of Huguenot churches and Protestant schools.
Versailles- Louis XIV had his great court at Versailles. It served as a residence of the king, a reception hall for state affairs, an office building for king’s government and home to thousands of royal officials and courtiers. It became a symbol for the French absolutist stated and power of Louis.
Jean-Baptiste Colbert- He was the controller general of finances for Louis XIV. He sought to increase the wealth and power of France through general adherence to mercantilism. He decreased the need for imports and increased exports.
Louis XIV’s wars- With Louis’s great success brought a desire for military glory. He waged wars from 1667 to 1713 and they drained the country economically.
Peace of Utrecht- It ended the War of the Spanish Succession and confirmed that Philip V was ruler of Spain.
Brandenburg-Prussia- The evolution of the empire into a powerful state was highly due to the Hohenzollern dynasty. Then when they received the duchy of Prussia in 1618 they became even stronger. Brandenburg-Prussia consisted of three disconnected masses in western,...
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