European History

The History of France: The Road to French Absolutism

December 1, 2017

Absolutism was a system of government in which all sovereignty resided with the king, true to Louis XIV’s dictum: “I am the state.” Particularly in France and Germany, the wars of religion had seriously weakened national governments and monarchies. Nobles had regained a great deal of power, peasants were in revolt, and there was really a great need for a political rebuilding of monarchies. […]

European History

The History of Italy: Unifying Italy’s City-States

December 1, 2017

Before Italy’s city-states were united under Victor Emmanuel II of the House of Savoy in 1861, Italy was, as Prince Clemens von Metternich said to Lord Palmerston, “merely a geographical expression.” […]

European History

Monarchs and Kings: Establishing 16th-Century Dynasties of Europe

December 1, 2017

As Europe approached 1500, a generation of stronger monarchs arose. Their goal was to suppress baronial rebellions and subordinate the church and aristocracy. They wanted to make themselves more secure and, ultimately, absolute. They would establish the modern conception of the nation-state with unitary loyalty owed to that state. […]

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