ABSOLUTE MONARCHS AND THE
PERIOD OF ENLIGHTENMENT
What were ABSOLUTE MONARCHS?
•Monarchs were kings.
•Absolute monarchs were the kings who believed in the idea of
•Divine right is the idea that GOD put them on the earth to rule
•They ruled strictly and typically got into conflicts with one
•Because of the way these monarchs treated the people they ruled,
many started to get the idea for REVOLUTION
A great example of
Louis XIV from
France. He spent
amounts of money
The Kings lived extravagantly while
many of their people scraped for
Eventually, people began to develop
This time of new ideas was known as the
ENLIGHTENMENT or Age of Reason.
New ideas on how government should be
THINKERS AND THEIR NEW
Most people had ideas like
He believed in the DIVINE
RIGHT of Kings.
However…different men had
Believed that all people had 3 natural rights to LIFE,
He said it was the duty of the government to protect these
Believed in freedom of speech so people could express their
opinions about the government
He also believed in freedom of religion, so people could
worship God in the way they choose
Believed that government should be separated into 3
The 3 branches of government, Montesquieu said, would
help keep the government from becoming too powerful
Checks and balances—each branch would check the others
to make sure one does not abuse its power.
Advocated rights for women
JEAN JACQUES ROUSSEAU
Believed in the concept of “Consent of the Governed”,
meaning that people should agree to the rules that they
follow by voting
He believed the having an absolute monarchy prevented
people from having true freedom.
Effects of Enlightenment ideas on the
Ideas spread through England and France
Kings were criticized more and more
People began questioning the way of life under Kings
New Ideas + Absolute Monarchs = REVOLUTION
The people began to fight for their freedoms and wanted
a CHANGE in their government