Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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Felicity (German, Glückseligkeit) as the purpose of a state (State, purpose of) is one of the key concepts of the German political theory of enlightened absolutism in the latter half of the 18th century. The felicity of the state and its subjects gave the state its purpose for existing and acting. Whereas in a medieval theological context felicity was viewed primarily as a positive goal to be achieved in the afterlife (Latin, beatitudo), it became the subject of philosophical-ethical and political-theoretical discussion in the early modern period, coming to be…

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Pahlow, Louis, “Felicity”, 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 23 September 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_020315>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20180126

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