“Enlightened Absolutism “

During the Enlightenment period in Europe there were quite a few rulers who actually adopted some of the beliefs, new ideas, and principles in their rule, which was thus “enlightened absolutism.” The majority of these rulers also fell into the category of being an absolutist monarch which was why this new way of rule is known as “enlightened absolutism.”

The key features of an “enlightened absolutist,” ruler include: interaction and discussion with well known enlightenment philosophers, religious toleration, judicial reform, etc. These rulers did not necessarily give more freedom to their “people,” but they were not as harsh as before the enlightenment. This new form of rule was especially seen in the countries of Prussia and Austria. To conclude, this is “enlightened absolutism.”

Discuss the Causes and Consequences of the War of Austrian Succession

The War of Austrian Succession(1740-1748), involved the Prussian king Frederick II, and the Austrian ruler, Maria Theresa. Both contending parties had different reasons to wage this war. But what were the overall causes and consequences of the war of Austrian Succession?

The causes of this war included the truth that Maria Theresa was overlooked as a ruler until she became a pretty dominant power. This led to her being bribed and pressured by other rulers including Frederick II, who wanted a piece of land called Silesia, which was part of Theresa’s territory. She rejected those bribes which thus brought forth the War of Austrian Succession. The war itself had victories on both sides, but ultimately in the end Frederick was ultimately victorious, and thus winning the land of Silesia. In short, those were the causes and consequences of the War of Austrian Succession.

What Does Adam Smith Mean by the “Invisible Hand?”

Adam Smith(1723-1790), was an important British economist and figure of the Scottish Enlightenment period. Smith further developed the concept of economics and was a pretty important influence to the founders of America. One of his economic concepts is known as the “Invisible Hand.” What does Smith mean by his concept of the “Invisible Hand?”

The “Invisible Hand,” in Smith’s definition is the demands of society, or the trading market, which depends on self interest. Smith stated that when someone is led by their self-interest, they usually end up helping others in the outcome, which is the “Invisible Hand,” guiding them. This is only really possible in a free market society. Thus, this is what Adam Smith meant by the “Invisible Hand.”

The Views of the French Materialists 

During the Enlightenment period in Europe people were exploring new ideas and views; some of those new ideas were relatively sound in nature and others were not. One of those new ideas was the belief of materialism which began to emerge in the 18th century, specifically in France. The individuals who had this belief of materialism are known as materialists. But what is materialism, and what were the views of the materialists, specifically the French materialists?

Materialism is the view that the human body is like a machine, that is in design only able to follow its nature. Because the human body is like a machine it does not have a soul, and is technically an animal, without a free will. The only difference between a human and an animal is that a human has purpose. In short, these were some of the views of the French Materialists.

The Main Ideas We Associate with the Enlightenment 

The Enlightenment was a period of western history that took place in the 17th and 18th centuries. It was a period of philosophical and intellectual study. There were many new ideas that came out of the period; some were influenced by old ideas and others were not influenced by the old. But what were some of the main ideas we associate with the Enlightenment?

There were many new ideas that came out of the Enlightenment but this essay would be much too long if I covered the majority of them. Some of the main ideas we associate with this period include: reason, skepticism of inherited traditional institutions, and the separation between science and religion. Beliefs such as deism(the belief that God is real but does not intervene in history), became more popular. Also to note, Enlightenment thinkers had more of a confidence towards human nature.

The Enlightenment period was a time of scientific trust, and the leaving behind of certain religious teachings and rituals. Overall this period of history was a time when man began to find his own beliefs instead of just following the beliefs and institutions of the old. Thus, these are some of the main ideas we associate with the enlightenment.

Science vs. Religion

Recent historians of science have revisited the traditional version of the Scientific Revolution and have disputed the standard claim that religion and science were locked in a titanic struggle. What is some of the evidence these scholars have brought forth?

The period of the Scientific Revolution also known as the Enlightenment era was a period of time when individuals began to explore science instead of just relying on Christianity. But that did not mean that these scientists at the time left Christianity completely behind, in fact many of these scientists were actually Christians themselves.

But some of the evidence that modern historians have pointed out includes the truth that people during the Enlightenment began to come up with their own ideas and beliefs that were not necessarily related to Christianity. Also people at the time began to look for truths instead of just relying on the bible for truths. Thus, this was some of the evidence historians of science have brought forth.

What was the Ptolemaic-Aristotelian View of the Universe and How did Copernicus, Kepler, Galileo, and Newton Undermine it and Institute an Alternative?

Throughout history people have been rethinking old ideas and discovering that those old ideas are false or true. Something that was in debate during the 17th century was the Ptolemaic-Aristotelian view of the universe, which brought forth many important discussions and questions. But what was the Ptolemaic-Aristotelian view of the universe? Also how did Copernicus, Kepler, Galileo, and Newton who were important scientific figures at the time undermine this view and institute an alternative?

The Ptolemaic-Aristotelian view of the universe is the view that the earth is at the center of the universe, and that the sun and all the other planets revolve around it. This view was widely believed before it was disproved, and was created by individuals such as Aristotle and Ptolemy. The way that this view of the universe was undermined by individuals such as Copernicus, Kepler, Galileo, and Newton was by using scientific observation, research, and other methods. These individuals were able to discover reasons on why the old view of the universe was false. 

Scientific discoveries have been occurring since the beginning of time; something that involves discovering these new things in science is disproving old scientific theories. The Ptolemaic-Aristotelian view of the universe was a view that was held by many for centuries until figures such as Copernicus, Kepler, Galileo, and Newton undermined it, and proved it to be false. 

Some Characteristic Features of Mannerism and Baroque Art

After the Renaissance new styles of art began to develop. Though these new styles of art were quite similar in many aspects to the artistic styles during the Renaissance there were definitely differences. Two of these artistic styles are the artistic styles of Mannerism and Baroque.

The artistic style of mannerism is associated with mannerism paintings. Some of the characteristics of this art style when it comes to paintings include: unusual depictions of landscapes and scenes, they were unrealistic, and are usually dramatic pieces of art. Paintings in this artistic style are usually dark in color but with some color scattered throughout. Also the figures that were painted in this style were also very unusual looking with elongated bodies.

Baroque art can consist of painting, sculptures, music, architecture, etc. Some of the characteristic features of baroque art as of paintings include: use of dark colors, emotion, attention to detail, and dramatic scenes.

Thus these are some of the characteristic features of mannerism and baroque art.

Peter the Great’s Program for Russia

Peter the Great(1672-1725), was tsar of Russia from 1682-1725 but was officially tsar on his own from 1696-1725. He was an interesting figure for his time in Russia; he was fascinated by the ways of western European countries, which he tried to replicate in Russia. But what was Peter the Great’s program for Russia?

Peter the Great, like I mentioned above, wanted to replicate the ways of western Europe in Russia which he was able to do. He saw the Russian way of life as primitive and even backwards so he created a program to enforce new changes on Russia. These changes included: all men had to shave their beards and cut their hair(if they did not they would face a tax), everyone had to dress in the western styles of dress, and women were given more opportunities for things like education. He also began to modernize the Russian army after an embarrassing defeat from the Swedish in 1700.

Peter the Great was not necessarily perceived as “great,” by everyone, especially those he targeted through extra taxes, etc. But regardless of how people thought of him he still brought Russia one step forward into the modern world, which was his program for Russia.

What Did Frederick William Accomplish?

Ruled as elector of Prussia from 1640-1688; Frederick William had inherited the duchies of Brandenburg and Prussia. When he first began ruling Brandenburg was a very poor and rural area, which had been hit negatively by the Thirty Years War.  

Frederick was able to achieve turning Prussia’s state from poor and struggling to a successful and thriving country. Other than turning around Prussia’s state he also created Germany’s first standing army, which was used to defend and grow his territory. To conclude, this was what Frederick William accomplished during his reign over Prussia.