Absolutism and Monarchies in Europe: Key Figures and Events


ruler absolute dictator

Divine Right:

ruler authority comes from God

Constitutional Monarchy:

ruler head of state but power limited by constitution

Petition of the Rights of Man:

limited power of king, no unlawful punishment, & no quartering troops

Glorious Revolution:

1688-1689, James II replaced by daughter & Prince William of Orange; overthrow of James II of England

Leading Absolutist Nation was France

Louis XIV:

1. Jean Baptiste Colbert minister of France 2. Refused to name new mayor of the palace, took over ruled himself 3. Built palace Versailles; “Sun King”, absolute monarch France, revoked Edict of Nantes

Absolute Monarchists of Russia:

Catherine the Great, Ivan the Terrible, Peter the Great

Absolutism Defeated in England

Goals Peter the Great:

westernize Russia, borrow European technology, modernize army/navy, port access to Europe, greater control over Russian Orthodox Church

English Kings were Limited in Power by the Parliament’s Control of Taxes

Oliver Cromwell:

English general led parliamentary army in English Civil War

Peter the Great:

Czar of Russia westernized Russia & built huge army

Frederick the Great:

Prussian king, embraced culture & wrote poetry, gave religious & philosophical toleration to all subjects, no more torture, simpler laws, expanded Prussian borders

William & Mary:

rulers England 1688, granted the throne after they gave the people the Bill of Rights

Elizabeth I:

Protestant queen England & Ireland between 1558 & 1603, absolute monarch, most successful ruler of all time, supported arts, increased treasury, supported exploration of New World, built up military, established Anglican Church as main English religion

Phillip II:

king Spain, sent Spanish Armada attack England

Henry VIII:

English king broke apart from Catholic Church, head of Anglican Church

Mary I (Bloody Mary):

Catholic queen England married Phillip II (Spain), daughter of Catherine of Aragon, executed hundreds of Protestants when they refused to convert

Encomienda System:

system Spanish America gave settlers the right to tax Native Americans/demand labor for protecting them & teaching them skills, exploited indigenous peoples

Columbian Exchange:

plants, animals diseases, & technologies between Americas & rest of world


small, fast, easy to sail 3-masted ship


an economic system to increase nation’s wealth by government regulation of all of the nation’s commercial interests


powerful South American empire in Andes Mountains of Peru


empire central Mexico, first empire


first civilization to appear in Mexico, left few written records, known for massive stone head sculptures

Benefits of Medieval Trade Routes were Spread Ideas & Tech, Spread Religion, Connected Cultures & Exchanged Social Structures


son of Pepin the Short

Martin Luther:

95 Theses (October 31, 1517), led religious reform in Germany, denied papal power & absolutist rule, only two sacraments baptism & communion

John Calvin:

created theocracy form of government & expanded Protestantism


humanist, criticized rich & powerful

Ramses the Great:

expanded kingdom, defeated Hittites, negotiated first peace treaty


king united Upper & Lower Egypt


region of Africa that straddled Upper Nile & south of Egypt


were Semitic-speaking people who conquered Egypt

Rosetta Stone:

helped historians understand Egyptian writing


Byzantine emperor, reconquered much of the territory previously ruled by Rome, initiated an ambitious building program, including Hagia Sophia, as well as a new legal code, wife: Theodora

Justinian Code:

A code of law that standardized laws in the Byzantine Empire & dealt with marriage, property rights, slavery, crime, & women’s rights

Hagia Sophia:

Cathedral of Holy Wisdom in Constantinople, built by order of the Byzantine emperor Justinian

Eastern Orthodox Church:

made up of various national churches who refused to recognize the Church of Rome’s claim to control

Basil I:

led a restoration of Byzantium’s power by pushing back Muslims

Seljuk Turks:

Muslims who attacked Constantinople, caused fall of Eastern Roman Empire


people in SE Europe who played a major role in establishing Russian state


bands of Swedish Norsemen


Kievan ruler who adopted Eastern Orthodoxy, ordered destruction of pagan idols & temples

Mansa Musa:

ruler of Mali, wealth helped spread Islam, brought scholars back after his trip to Mecca

Sahara Desert:

north of ancient African empires

Islam Replaced Traditional Religions in Mali, Ghana, & Songhai


common people in Rome

First Triumvirate:

Julius Caesar, Pompey, Crassus

Ides of March:

March 15, 44 BC (day Caesar was murdered)

Augustus Caesar:

first emperor of Rome, adopted son of Julius Caesar, age of Roman peace (Pax Romana)


Athenian leader during Golden Age, advanced democracy in Athens & for ordering the construction of the Parthenon


Greek island in Mediterranean Sea, home of Minoans


poem by Homer about the Trojan Wars


Greek city-state


fortified hilltop in ancient Greek city