Kings and Philosophers, 1689-1789
These years also encompassed the birth, maturation, and waning of the Enlightenment. Leonard Krieger shows how the monarchical tradition and the new intellectual developments were reflected in the latter half of the period during the rule of "philosopher kings," the enlightened absolutists. He analyses, too, the origins of a movement toward representative government and the stirrings of political and social revolt that would bring the period to an abrupt end.
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Review: Kings and Philosophers, 1689-1789 (Norton History of Modern Europe)User Review - Goodreads
Dense and dry.