1.) During the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, states in northern Europe organized themselves in order to dominate European politics and become great powers.
2.) These nations believed different ways of government such as a parliamentary monarchy in England, or political absolutism, in France.
3.) These changes in politics created major powers by the mid-eighteenth century, these powers being: Great Britain, France, Austria, Prussia, and Russia.
A.) Frederick William, the “Great Elector”
1.) He established himself and his successors of the Hohenzollern family as the central uniting power of Prussia.
2.) Junkers were allowed to enforce serfdom if they returned obedience to the Hohenzollerns. Frederick William also raised taxes on peasants to build an army.
3.) Frederick William was important because he allowed the army and the Elector to become allies, thus making Prussia a valuable potential ally.
B.) Peter the Great
1.) Peter the Great was a great Russian tsar who traveled to learn about how to make his nation, and military, better and powerful
2.) Along with a new navy, Peter the Great created the capital of St. Petersburg, which resembled the majesty of Versailles. Peter the Great also created the Table of Ranks which put peoples’ social position and privileges as more important than lineage.
3.) Peter is also important because he created a strong army and worked to protect a strong monarchy from people like the boyars and the streltsy. I. St. Petersburg
1.) St. Petersburg was the new capital city Peter the Great built on the Gulf of Finland.
2.) St. Petersburg was somewhat of a smaller version of Versailles, and was the site of where boyars were told to construct townhouses.
3.) This city is important because it was significantly different than the old capital of Moscow, it was where the government was conducted, and it symbolized a new Western orientation of Russia. II. Conditions in Russia
1.) Peter the Great also made different reforms in Russia before the end of his rule.
2.) Peter the Great added administrative colleges to Russia to help oversee matters such as collecting taxes; he also established the Table of Ranks and made changes regarding church power.
3.) These changes allowed Russia to become a more Westernized, stronger nation, but not necessarily a more stable one.
C.) Louis XIV
1.) Louis XIV was a great absolute monarch of France who was both extravagant, yet a driven and dutiful leader.
2.) Although Louis was an absolute monarch, he still communicated with councils or regional bodies called parlements. Louis was also affected by the Fronde as a young boy.
3.) Mainly because of the Fronde, Louis strived to be a strong, absolute ruler (also ruled by the “divine right of kings”) so that nothing like that would happen again and so he could make France a great power. Louis also became notoriously extravagant and created his palace of Versailles to display his power and wealth.
1.) The Fronde was a series of rebellions against royal authority by the nobility and peasants of France between 1649 and 1652.
2.) These rebellions were triggered by policies of Richelieu (and the Mazarin), and were related to Jansenism in that Jansenists also opposed royal authority.
3.) The Fronde made Louis focus on making the monarchy the strongest power in France and allowed him to think and rule in a more subtle, genius way.
E.) Bishop Bossuet
1.) Bishop Bossuet was a French bishop and leader of French Catholicism in the second half of the seventeenth century.
2.) Bishop Bossuet was made court preacher and a tutor by Louis XIV. Bishop Bossuet also defended the “divine right of kings”.
3.) Bossuet is important in that he tried to defend the absolute power of kings and depicts them as embracing the will of the people in their whole body and as being immune to judgment by mortals.
F.) War of Spanish Succession/Treaty of Utrecht
1.) This was a war over who would