Jan26 - The Limits of Absolutism Enlightened and Not What...

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The Limits of Absolutism, Enlightened and Not What is “Enlightened Absolutism”? Was there such a thing? o Why are Frederick II and Joseph II considered o What were the limits of absolute government, especially in France? Key Terms · “enlightened absolutism” · Joseph II · Frederick II · Allgemeines Landrecht (General Law Code) · Parlements · The Third Estate I. Enlightened Absolutism: Concept and Reality I Some monarchs used the ideas of the Enlightenment to claim their further right to rule o Marxists argue the Enlightenment was a bourgeoisie rhetoric that was the absolutists last effort to extend themselves Austria: Maria Theresa and Joseph II o Prussia: Frederick the Great o Russia: Catherine the Great Definition: Reform from above (Enlightened rulers) informed by Enlightenment principles Goal: better, more rational government aimed at improving the overall moral, material, and intellectual condition of society

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