What are differences between Louis XIV's and Pieter De la Court's views on human nature, the natural order of society, the form of society, government, and the form of the French monarchy and the Dutch Republic?

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Pieter de la Court was a writer and businessman who lived at the height of the "golden age" of the Dutch Republic. He was a thorough believer in republicanism; that is, limited representative government. In this, he was, of course, the antithesis of Louis XIV, whose lifestyle and approach to governance is synonymous with absolutism.

In his book The True Interest and Political Maxims of the Republic of Holland, de la Court described the Dutch Republic. De la Court was an advocate of economic liberty, arguing that the Dutch Republic was "wonderfully linked together" by the common "interest" of its people. He is sometimes regarded as a forerunner of Adam Smith and other classical liberal economic thinkers.

While a prominent school of economic thinkers known as "Physiocrats" would later emerge in absolutist France, most of the courtiers surrounding Louis XIV argued that the nation's economic interests were best served by a system of taxes, tariffs, and royally-granted licenses. De la Court claimed that the Dutch prospered and were unified precisely because of the absence of such restraints. Moreover, de la Court held the Dutch Republic up as an example of religious tolerance, again a product of the commitment to commercial activity. This was a stark contrast to Bourbon France, where Protestant Huguenots were persecuted.

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