This text focuses on two main themes: the ideas of the enlightened
thinkers of the 18th century; and the extent to which such concepts
were utilized by European monarchs. The discussion considers why
these rulers were anxious to be associated with enlightened ideas,
yet so rarely put them into practice. The minor rulers who can be
classed as enlightened despots and the influence of the
Enlightenment on the conduct of foreign policy are also
considered.;The book is part of the "Access to History" series,
which provides a concise and readable introduction to major periods
and topics in European and British history for both the higher
level student and the general reader. Study guides for students are
included in each chapter.
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