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Absolute Ruler

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Louis XIV, Peter the Great, and Tokugawa Ieyasu all considered their own power and strengthened their states in many different ways but their actions were all similar. They united their states, introduced reforms and assessed their power and the effect that they could have on others. Although their techniques were different, the ways these monarchs ruled their states show great similarities. Unity is one of the many things that make the reigns of all of these monarchs so similar. For example Louis XIV continued the work of his predecessors to create a centralized state governed from the capital in order to sweep away the fragments of feudalism which had continued in parts of France. Like Louis, Czar Peter the Great wanted to unify Russia; He decided to do this by turning them into a great military power and westernize it. Tokugawa Ieyasu defeated his rivals at the battle of Sekigahara in 1600. The victory earned him the loyalty of daimyo throughout Japan. He later became the sole shogun and moved the capital, unifying Japan. The reformation of government policies and customs were instrumental in these monarchs creating their own legacy to be left behind and followed by their successors.

The best example of reformation in this section is Peter the Great’s decision to westernize Russia. He not only changed laws but he also changed the way people in his state behaved and carried themselves. He did this by introducing laws and telling people the correct way to live. Louis XIV introduced reforms in domestic policy in France; to do this he built on the policy created by Lois III but he also added his own ideas and those of others. Tokugawa Ieyasu like the others changed the social structure of Japan; he supervised early diplomatic relations with Europeans and established a dynasty to ensure that the Tokugawa clan continued to rule long after his death. Also, Tokugawa passed a proclamation that banned Christianity from Japanese shores. A country, state, or dynasty is only as powerful as its ruler or monarch.

This is something all of these monarchs believed because all of them took the time to consider how powerful they were and it’s one of the many reasons why they were as successful as they were. Louis XIV as King of France was basically the most powerful person in Europe as France was the most powerful nation. Although he saw himself as the most powerful person in France, Louis XIV took into account the way that the nobles and others might rebel and limited their power accordingly. Had he not done this he might not have ruled for as long as he did. Peter the Great also considered himself an extremely powerful man. Due to this he disguised himself as a regular person so that he could mingle with the regular people. Him taking the time to consider how powerful he was he might not have learned all of the things he did while in disguise and would not have been such a great ruler. Tokugawa Ieyasu considered himself to be extremely powerful but still realized that he wasn’t powerful to the point where the daimyo would not eventually rebel so he invented ways to make sure that the daimyo were completely loyal and obedient. If he had considered all possibilities Japan might not have been as peaceful as it was for as long as it was.

Louis XIV, Peter the Great, and Tokugawa Ieyasu all ruled their respective kingdoms differently. Despite this, they all ruled similarly and this is one of the reasons why they were so successful in their reigns. They united their states, introduced reforms and accessed their power and the effect that they could have on others. If these monarchs had not done this, the outcome of their reigns would have been significantly different and not necessarily better.

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