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Absolute monarchy or absolutism is a monarchical form of government in which the monarch has absolute power among his or her people. An absolute monarch wields unrestricted political power over the sovereign state and its people. Absolute monarchies are often hereditary but other means of transmission of power are attested. Absolute monarchy differs from constitutional monarchy, in which the monarch's authority is legally bound or restricted by a constitution.<ref>Jerome Blum et al., The European World (1970) 1:267-68</ref>

In theory, the absolute monarch exercises total power over the land, yet in practice the monarchy is counterbalanced by political groups from among the social classes and castes of the realm, such as the aristocracy, clergy, and middle and lower classes.

Some monarchies have weak or symbolic legislatures and other governmental bodies that the monarch can alter or dissolve at will. Countries where the monarch still maintains absolute power are Brunei,<ref name=brunei-abs>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=news }}</ref> Qatar,<ref name=qat-abs>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> Oman,<ref name=oman-abs>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> Saudi Arabia,<ref name="Cavendish78"/> Swaziland,<ref name=swazi-abs>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> the emirates comprising the UAE,<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> and Vatican City.<ref name="vaticancity">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref>


Absolute monarchy sections
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