Monday, September 26, 2016

Unit 1: Definitions

Key Words and Definitions

1. Guilds: Medieval association of craftworkers with the same skill or trade, which controlled the manufacture and sale of crafts products.

2. Ancien Régime: Monarchic, aristocratic, social and political system established between the 15th and 18th centuries. Originally used by the French to refer to the French, the term extended to the rest of the monarchies in Europe.

3. Mercantilism: Economic system based on the idea that a country’s wealth depended on how much gold and silver it possessed. It maximises the exports.

4. Estates General: Meeting of the representatives of the three estates in France. In Spain, there are Cortes, and in England, Parliament.

5. Estates of the realm: Orders of social hierarchy used in Christian Europe from the medieval period to Early Modern Age.

6.  Tithe: One tenth of the annual produce from farming or livestock which all peasants were obliged to give to the Church.

7. Enlightenment: Movement that promoted knowledge, science and education to reform society.

8. Legislative power: The authority of a branch of government that is charged with making and enacting laws. 

9. Executive power: Authority that enforces orders and ensures that they are carried out as intended.

10. Judicial power: Constitutional authority assigned to courts and judges. The authority enables them to interpret and apply the law, arbitrate legal disputes and carry out justice.

11. Physiocracy: Economic theory developed by a group of 18th century Enlightenment French economists who believed that the wealth of nations was derived only from the value of "land agriculture" or "land development" and that agricultural products should be highly priced.

12. Enlightened despotism: Form of government that developed in some European countries in the 18th century. Its objective was to modernise the country and improve subjects’ quality of life by combining absolute monarchy with Enlightenment ideas.

13. Domestic system: A merchant normally supplied the raw materials to the workers (peasants), so they could make the products in their homes. The merchants then sold the products.

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