Absolute monarchy


July 6, 2022

An absolute monarchy is a form of government in which the monarch has complete (absolute) power to rule his country and its citizens without the laws or judiciary touching his control. Sometimes absolute power may also be held by a religious leader. In theory, in an absolute monarchy, the monarch has completely unlimited power to do whatever he wants, but in practice, monarchs are usually forced to distribute power to different factions. In some monarchies (such as the German Empire 1871–1918), the monarch has the parliament or other parts of the government as his "treasury", but the monarch is able to override their decisions with the power of control. Most absolute monarchies later evolved into constitutional monarchies. The Russian Empire was an absolute monarchy, but transitioned to constitutionalism with the 1905 revolution. Absolute monarchy has significantly lost its popularity since the French Revolution, when more and more countries that used to exercise absolute power on behalf of the state have converted to populism. Still, a few countries can still be defined as absolute monarchies: Brunei, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Swaziland and the Vatican. Many of the formerly absolute monarchies, such as Jordan and Morocco, have slowly transformed into constitutional monarchies, although the monarch still has some power in both countries. Bhutan has also become a constitutional monarchy. Nepal, on the other hand, has turned into a republic.

List of current absolute monarchs

The Vatican is an exception in these countries insofar as it is the only absolute monarchy that is at the same time a democracy while the others are more or less authoritarian.

See also

Dictatorship Autocracy