Montesquieu Influence On The Enlightenment

466 Words2 Pages

The Enlightenment, also known as the “Age of Reason,” occurred in the eighteenth century and was a period in which ideas concerning God, nature, reason and humanity were combined, and these ideas instigated revolutionary developments in art, philosophy, and politics. The Enlightenment was crucial in determining aspects in terms of politics, government, and religion. Enlightenment thinkers such as John Locke, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, and Charles Montesquieu influenced the Founding Fathers and their ideas were found in the Declaration of Independence. The most important influence that shaped the founding of the United States came from John Locke, an Englishmen who redefined the nature of government. His views were most fully developed in the famous Second Treatise Concerning Civil Government; his views were so radical that he only expressed authorship in his will. He expressed the view that government is morally obliged to serve people, namely by protecting their natural rights of …show more content…

Montesquieu stated that the best way to secure liberty and prevent a corrupted government was to divide the powers of government among separate groups that could check and manage one another. Madison and the other Founding Fathers listened to Montesquieu and established an executive, legislative, and judiciary branch in the federal Constitution as well as a system of checks and balances. In conclusion, Enlightenment thinkers greatly influenced the Founding Fathers in the creation of the Declaration of Independence. These Enlightenment thinkers included John Locke, Joan-Jacques Rousseau, Charles Montesquieu, and many more. Their ideas of natural rights, checks and balances, consent, and division of power are not only found in the Declaration of Independence but are still used and are relevant

Open Document