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The AGE OF ABSOLUTISM. Warm-up. What happened to the Spanish Armada? It was destroyed by the English Navy Why was England considered a natural fortress? It is an island and it can only be attacked by water What is an absolute monarch?

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Presentation Transcript
warm up
  • What happened to the Spanish Armada?
  • It was destroyed by the English Navy
  • Why was England considered a natural fortress?
  • It is an island and it can only be attacked by water
  • What is an absolute monarch?
  • It is a ruler with absolute power, who does not have to answer to a Parliament or other law making body
absolute monarchs
Absolute Monarchs

In the warm-up, we looked at the definition of an absolute monarch.

What types of qualities would an absolute monarch have to have?

What sort of things would an absolute monarch do?

The period of time from 1648 – 1763 is known as the Age of Absolutism or the Age of Absolute Monarchs.

the players
The Players

France – Louis xiv

Russia – peter the great

louis xiv the sun king
Louis XIV – The Sun King
  • Why was Louis called The Sun King?
  • Just as the sun is the center of the solar system, Louis was the center of France’s government.
  • Just as the sun dazzles people’s eyes, so Louis dazzled France (and indeed all of Europe).
  • “The Sun King” was the flattering description Louis liked the best.
  • We will see how and why Louis earned this title.
how louis inherited the throne
How Louis Inherited the Throne
  • Louis XIV was the third king of the Bourbon Dynasty.
  • His father, Louis XIII, had been a weak ruler who left the governing of the country to the powerful Cardinal Richelieu.
  • The Cardinal died in 1642 followed six months later by Louis XIII.
  • The heir to the throne of France, Louis XIV, was only 5 years old at the time.
louis xiv the king
Louis XIV – The King?
  • Louis was only 5 years old when he inherited the throne.
  • Most 5 year olds cannot read, write, or tie their shoes much less run a country.
  • Louis was no exception
  • Although he was king in name someone had to step in as acting king until Louis was old enough to understand what was going on.
  • In Louis’ case, it would be a team – his mother, Anne, and Cardinal Jules Mazarin
cardinal mazarin
Cardinal Mazarin
  • Mazarin’s aspirations were the same as Louis’ father’s Cardinal, Richelieu.
  • His greatest achievement for France came in 1648 with the signing of the treaty that ended the Thirty Years’ War.
  • France was the most powerful country in Europe at this time but its King was only 10 years old.
  • Although France was respected and feared around the world, the people of France hated Cardinal Mazarin.
louis life in danger
Louis’ Life in Danger
  • During his childhood, Louis’ life was in constant danger.
  • People blamed him for the miserable lives they led due to Mazarin’s domestic policies.
  • In 1648, the peoples’ hatred for Mazarin was so intense that riots broke out in the streets of Paris.
  • These riots were started by nobles who believed Mazarin was trying to strip away some of their powers and privileges.
the riots
The Riots
  • The riots spread out into the countryside and would last for 5 years.
  • Mazarin called these riots the Fronde which is French for slingshot.
    • Insinuating that the rebels were naughty children
  • The treat to Louis’ life was greatest during one night in 1651.
  • Louis was 13 years old.
one night in 1651
One night in 1651
  • During the night of 1651, rioters broke into the palace where Louis lived while in Paris.
  • They demanded to see Louis
  • The terrified queen mother led them to the room where Louis slept and let them in
  • They barged threw he door and found Louis “asleep”.
  • Satisfied that Louis had not left Paris, the rebels stomped out.
the fronde
The Fronde
  • In the end, the Fronde rebellion failed.
  • The leaders distrusted each other more than distrusted Mazarin.
  • Peasants and townspeople grew weary and tired of the disorder and fighting
  • The five years of the rebellion led to the people of France accepting the oppressive laws of an absolute king, because they were convinced that the alternative, rebellion, was even worse.
louis ruled in grand style
Louis Ruled in Grand Style
  • In 1661, Cardinal Mazarin died.
  • Louis XIV, now 23, was finally allowed to his kingdom in grand fashion and the way he wanted.
  • For the next 54 years, Louis dominated France
louis xiv
Louis XIV
  • Although he stood only 5’5” tall, he carried himself in an impressive manner.
  • His erect and dignified posture made him appear tall.
  • Wearing high healed shoes also helped
louis is very particular
Louis is Very Particular
  • Hated the city
  • Hated delays and the people traveling with him, were at his mercy
  • Allowed no stopping unless it was for him
  • Loved to travel through Frances countryside
  • Loved to eat
  • He employed nearly 500 chefs and waiters to prepare his food and wait on him
  • Louis’ believed that his court was a direct reflection of him – grand and glorified.
  • His aspirations went farther than just his court.
  • He devoted himself to helping France attain economic, political, and cultural brilliance.
  • Early in Louis’ reign, France made impressive economic gains, thanks largely to the efforts of his dour, humorless minister of finance, Jean Baptiste Colbert
  • Known as the father of Economics
  • Believed in a theory of mercantilism
  • What is this?
  • It states that a country increases its wealth by exporting more goods than it imports
  • His theory was so successful that by 1683, France had become the industrial leader of Europe.
  • There were four main parts to his theory
  • To bring goods into the country for sale
  • Why it necessary to do this?
  • A country cannot make everything that it needs to survive on.
  • What a county sells in order to make money to purchase imports.
  • This should be more than it imports so that the country is making money
balance of trade
Balance of Trade



  • US - Oil
  • Japan – lumber
  • Canada - cars
  • US – Corn
  • Japan – cars
  • Canada - lumber
balance of trade1
Balance of Trade
  • When exports equal imports
  • The last ingredient to Colbert’s theory of mercantilism is subsidies.
  • These are grants of money and tax benefits given to French companies.
louis mistake
Louis’ mistake
  • France was prospering with Colbert’s economic plan.
  • Colbert died in 1683.
  • Louis, being Catholic, decided to revoke the Edict of Nantes – it protected the religions freedoms of the Huguenots who were Protestants.
  • The Huguenots took a commanding lead in French banking activity.
  • To escape persecution, at lest 200,000 fled France and thus the country lost those skilled workers