Louis XIV and Absolutism: A Brief Study with Documents (Bedford Series in History & Culture) Hardcover – 1 Feb 2000
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'Beik has selected documents that offer an appropriate balance between elite and popular views and experiences of Louis XIV's absolute monarchy, and between the center of power and the periphery. The translations are consistently lively, and the topics should generate some spirited discussion. The general introduction, the chapter introductions, the headnotes, and the editorial interjections are well crafted and have just the right touch of informality to appeal to undergraduate students' - Albert N. Hamscher, Kansas State University
'William Beik supplies us with a comprehensive. yet accessible array of documents that illustrate the complex dynamics of political power during the reign of Louis XIV. These primary sources lead us away from the trite simplifications connected to 'absolutism' and provide us with a much more accurate view of the actual day-to-day functioning of the French government in this period. This collection will appeal to a broad range of students at different levels and provides instructions with an excellent new cache of transalted documents on early modern France' - Sarah Chapman, Oakland University
'This book offers a wide range of valuable documents on the critical issues of seventeenth-century French history. Professor Beik has done a fine job of translating documents he chose judiciously and has also provided insightful commentaries. This volume is bound to captivate students and lays the foundation for stimulating class discussions' - John Hurt, University of Delaware --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
About the Author
WILLIAM BEIK is professor of history at Emory University. An authority on the social and institutional history of seventeenth-century France, he has written numerous books and articles. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
It appears that the notional loyalty to King (as an absolute ruler) was already established. The book instead charts the efforts to overcome the practical obstacle to the Kings theoretical authority.
There is a focus on the early reforms of Louis XIV.
With original documents the quality of the evidence is very strong, and has incidental value on other points. Notably among the original document was Louise XIV letter to his son on ruling. For someone seeking an academic understanding of the Ancien Regime, I would recommend this book.
For a casual reading, most original documents are easy to read letters/diary entries about some interesting event the author wishes to provide insight into.