This decisive contribution to the long-running debate about the dynamics of state formation and elite transformation in early modern Europe examines the new monarchies that emerged during the course of the 'long seventeenth century'. It argues that the players surviving the power struggles of this period were not 'states' in any modern sense, but primarily princely dynasties pursuing not only dynastic ambitions and princely prestige but the consequences of dynastic chance. At the same time, elites, far from insisting on confrontation with the government of princes for principled ideological reasons, had every reason to seek compromise and even advancement through new channels that the governing dynasty offered, if only they could profit from them. Monarchy Transformed ultimately challenges the inevitability of modern maps of Europe and shows how, instead of promoting state formation, the wars of the period witnessed the creation of several dynastic agglomerates and new kinds of aristocracy.
Liesbeth Geevers Source: The English Historical Review
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