What stuck out most to me was that in Ch.3 of The Revolution of Peter the Great
, Cracraft talks about the Russian form of government as compared to other forms in Europe at the time. Cracraft indicated that the system that Russia adopted was a new type of absolutist monarchy that had already arisen in “contemporary France, Prussia, or Sweden” (Cracraft 2003, 65). This seems to imply this form of government as some sort of European norm. However in Peter the Great: A Biography, Hughes mentions that while in England, Peter was at odds with the English people regarding forms of government (Hughes 2002, 49). Hughes suggests that foreign visitors to Russia and the English people found the absolutist power of the Russian Monarchy detestable. This seems to bring us to a contradiction, that absolute monarchy was a system that many Europeans took issue with as outsiders to Russia, but that it also could be the predominant system in Europe.
Which is more correct, to say that this was a new and popular system dominating Europe or that it was hated system ?