I.             Prussia

A.    Nobility in power after 1400 – Elector of Brandenburg (essentially, the king) had no real power—no army, cut off from sea, poor land

B.    30 Years War opens the door for absolutism because it weakened the Estates (the nobles or “Junkers”); plus, Estates traditionally held power of the purse ($)

C.    Electors

1.    Frederick William (The Great Elector) – strides toward absolutism

a.    sought to unite 3 provinces (see map)

b.    tug-o-war with nobles/Estates over the question: Who gets the right to tax?

c.    Great Elector won that right and built himself an army

2.    Elector Frederick III (Frederick the Ostentatious) – weak of body and mind

a.    imitated Louis XIV

b.    “all hat and no cattle”; like Lord Farquar in Shrek

3.    Frederick William I (The Soldier King)

a.    military man! Discipline, skill, precision

b.    Bureaucracy established

c.    Compromise with nobility – serve in army lordly over peasants

II.           Russia

A.    The Mongol Yoke – 200 years of Mongol control

B.    Three Ivans, and two Other Guys

1.    Ivan I (Ivan Moneybags)

a.    was tax collector in Moscow for the Mongols

b.    gathered lands around Moscow (see map)

2.    Ivan III

a.    enlarged Russian lands around Moscow

b.    becomes “czar” and breaks with Mongols

c.    believed to be heirs to caesars and Orthodox Christianity

d.    Began the “Third Rome”

e.    boyard nobility” (regular nobles) become “service nobility (hold king’s land but must serve in his army)

3.    Ivan IV (Ivan the Terrible)

a.    insulted by nobles as a boy

b.    solidified idea that nobles didn’t own land and had to serve

c.    employed terror to “convince” the nobles

d.    people fled…ie. The Cossacks

e.    upon his/his son’s death, confusion emerges for his heir in “Time of Troubles”

4.    Michael Romanov

a.    nobles unite to crush Cossack revolt of Time of Troubles

b.    agree on Ivan IV’s grandnephew, Michael Romanov

c.    Romanov completely enserfs the peasants, relaxes military obligations of nobility

d.    Social protest #2 – Nikon seeks religious reform like Greek Orthodox church, people revolt, Cossacks revolt

e.    Nobility make their top priority à czar’s power and peasants’ kept down

5.    Peter the Great

a.    always at war

b.    his military lagged behind the west, so, he westernizes

c.    Peter returns to Russia to attack Sweden, only to lose

d.    He tightens the army – requires nobles to serve again, made schools, military bureaucracy, drafted peasants

e.    Peter now beats Sweden, takes Estonia and Latvia

f.     Paved the way for Catherine the Great who moves closer to westernizing