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century dictatorship

Absolutism, form of government, such as a dictatorship, in which all power is held by an unchecked ruler. Monarchies in the ancient world were usually absolute. In England, in the 18th century, the Stuart attempt to rule by divine right failed, but elsewhere in Europe, especially France, absolutism flourished until the early 19th century. Examples of absolutism in the 20th century are the totalitarian governments of Adolf Hitler in Germany and Joseph Stalin in the Soviet Union.

See also: Dictatorship; Totalitarianism.

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