Classes, Estates and Order in Early-Modern Brittany by James B. Collins

By James B. Collins

This e-book makes use of the Breton adventure to handle primary historiographical matters: the which means of absolutism and the character of early-modern French society. It abandons the previous framework that adverse orders to sessions, and in its place seeks to discover the crucial which means of the evolution of the French country within the upkeep of order (especially the protection of property). Professor Collins's major goal, illustrated through his fusion of monetary, social and institutional ways, is to mix social and political/institutional heritage, see you later separated in works in this box. opposite to a lot bought knowledge, Professor Collins argues that absolutism used to be extra facade than fact, and that French society was once even more cellular than in general believed.

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Additional resources for Classes, Estates and Order in Early-Modern Brittany

Example text

It could mean simple obedience to the state, which those same estates often perceived to be violating their sense of the "real" order. Different members of one group and different groups had different ideas about the "real" tradition and about the meaning of order. The king's new order - his legislative role, his effort to rule outside of contracts - violated some basic principles of the old order. 39 French elites had achieved a compromise definition of order by the time of Louis XIV. First, order meant the protection of property.

63 Local elites took a different attitude toward the rebels when they threatened elite political and social control. In Brittany we can see the distinction between the urban revolts of 1675, aimed at royal tax bureaux, and the rural risings, aimed at the landlords and legal men. One of the key elements in changing elite attitudes toward the former was the widespread belief that it had spawned the latter. The main threat to order came not from rebellion but from passive resistance and "disobedience": refusal to pay taxes or to perform corveesy smuggling, collusion with tax fraud, a general sullenness against authority.

The implication of such a distinction may be that the increased centralization of the state made the clientage system work better. The greater power of the state, combined with the clientage system used to make that state function, gave patrons greater control over clients in the late seventeenth century than in the sixteenth century. The so-called "absolute" state then becomes a mechanism by which the high nobility increases its control over the lesser nobility, rather than a mechanism by which the king breaks the power of the high nobility.

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