Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

Get access

Divine Right, doctrine of
(725 words)

1. Introduction

In quite general terms, divine right denotes the legitimation (Legitimacy) of authority by the will of God. In this view, authority or official power is not based on individual rights of the bearer, such as birthright, democratic election, or appointment by an official body. Appointed by the grace of God, the ruler also does not appeal to his own divine nature. Of central significance for understanding divine right is its ceremonial use in numerous official documents [3]…

Cite this page
Ruppert, Stefan, “Divine Right, doctrine of”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 21 October 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_020368>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20170626



▲   Back to top   ▲