Absolute Monarchs • Kings or queens who held all of the power within their state’s boundaries. • Goal was to control every aspect of society.
Believed in… • Divine right: idea that God created the monarchy and therefore he or she acted as God’s representative on earth.
Growth of Monarchs • Decline in feudalism. • Rise of cities. • Growth of national kingdoms All resulted in centralized authority.
Rise of Absolutism • Religious and territorial conflicts between states led to almost continuous warfare. • This caused governments to build huge armies and raise taxes. • Peasants already suffering-can’t afford taxes. • Leads to revolt.
In Response… • Leaders tried to increase own power by… -regulating religion and social gatherings -created new government roles
King Philip II • King of Spain and its colonies in the Americas • Shy, serious, religious, hard working, didn’t like people to help him, suspicious
King Philip II • El Escorial, Spain:The palace of King Philip II Describe this palace.
King Louis XIV • The “Boy King” • Became king at age 7, but the throne was held for him until he came of age. • Mazarin watched throne, but nobility led riots and threatened the young king. They wanted power too.
Louis XIV • Took throne at age 22. • Weakened power of nobility for threatening him when he was younger. • He excluded them from his councils.
Louis XIV • The “Sun King” • Spent a fortune to surround himself in luxury.
The Grand Style of Louis XIV • Awoken at 8:30 • 100 of the “luckiest” nobles were there to help him dress. • However, only four were chosen to help him do so. This was a great honor.
Grand Style Cont. • Outside bedchamber, lesser nobles waited in the halls, hoping to be noticed. • If you were absent from this, it was not good.
More Grand Style • Keeping nobles in the palace increased royal authority in two ways: • Made nobles dependent on king • Increased power of intendants (collected taxes and administered justice)
Versailles Statistics • 2,000 acres of grounds • 12 miles of roads • 27 miles of trellises • 200,000 trees • 210,000 flowers planted every year • 80 miles of rows of trees • 55 acres surface area of the Grand Canal • 12 miles of enclosing walls • 50 fountains and 620 fountain nozzles • 21 miles of water conduits • 3,600 cubic meters per hour: water consumed • 26 acres of roof • 51,210 square meters of floors • 2,153 windows • 700 rooms • 67 staircases • 6,000 paintings • 1,500 drawings and 15,000 engravings • 2,100 sculptures • 5,000 items of furniture and objects d'art • 150 varieties of apple and peach trees in the Vegetable Garden
How Much Did This Cost? • Only a ruler with total control over his country’s economy could afford such a lavish palace. • How much do you think it cost in today’s money?
2.5 billion dollars in today’s money! 2.5 BILLION of today’s $
What Was He Like? • Patron of the arts • Party • Life of excess
Legacy of Louis XIV • Louis XIV fought many wars to expand France’s boundaries. • France was weakened by poor harvests. • People are starving, but Louis raises taxes to fund wars.
Positive and Negative • France above all others in arts and literature. • Military leader of Europe. • Power allowed development of colonies overseas • France in staggering debt because of spending. • Abused power and left tax burden on people • This would plague his heirs
Questions • What are the benefits of having an absolute ruler? • What are the drawbacks of having an absolute ruler?