Download e-book for kindle: Absolutism in Seventeenth-Century Europe by John Miller, Graham Scott

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By John Miller, Graham Scott

ISBN-10: 0333461142

ISBN-13: 9780333461143

ISBN-10: 1349211214

ISBN-13: 9781349211210

So much 17th Century eu Monarchs governed territories which have been culturally and institutionally different. pressured via the escalating scale of conflict to mobilise evermore males and funds they attempted to deliver those territories below nearer keep an eye on, overriding local and sectional liberties. This used to be justified via a idea stressing the monarchs absolute energy and his accountability to put the nice of his nation earlier than specific pursuits. The essays of this quantity examine this procedure in states at very various levels of monetary and political improvement and investigate the nice gulf that regularly existed among the monarchs strength in idea and in perform.

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The army envisaged by Lipsius and his many followers was something quite different from the feudal and post-feudal armies that had hitherto prevailed; and the key to the difference lies in discipline. It might be an allowable over-simplification to say that the pervasive notion of organised discipline under an authority which commands in the sure expectation of obedience is the keynote of the 'political Neostoicism' that was to be so important in the Europe of the absolutist age. It is relevant to point out that, in his more strictly political theory, Lipsius pays particular attention to what may be seen as at least an adumbration of 'bureaucratic' structures such as were to develop under absolute monarchy and then to extend their influence throughout the political life of the modern state.

Every jurist had an armoury of weapons and used only those which were relevant to a particular confrontation, often presenting them in the form of slogans and shibboleths rather than extended and well-argued theories. Yet each elite had a core of fundamental principles to which it resorted in most moments of crisis. Often two opposing camps would use the same evidence but interpret it differently, showing that the disputants had much in common or were, in the long term, dependent on each other.

Moreover, and the point is especially important at this stage in European history, it was very soon translated into half a dozen vernacular languages and more. One area of discussion where its influence was felt must at least be mentioned here, though it cannot be even tentatively explored. This is the area of 'reason of state'. To mention this is to recall that, ambiguous and controversial though he inevitably was, the figure of Machiavelli could never be ignored in discussions of political power in the early modern centuries.

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Absolutism in Seventeenth-Century Europe by John Miller, Graham Scott


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