I vaguely recall coming across a term in one of my past world history classes that refers to an ideology which stipulates that monarchs are destined from birth to lead and that they descend from greatness, or that they are naturally superior to others.

The best terms I can come up with to describe what I'm thinking of are natural sovereignty and sovereign destiny, but neither of these bring up relevant information in google. I'm positive there's a technical term for this, but I can't remember what exactly it is.

Here's a relevant example in literature, taken from The Count of Monte Cristo, which may help:

But the kings of modern times, restrained by the limits of mere probability, have neither courage nor desire. They fear the ear that hears their orders, and the eye that scrutinizes their actions. Formerly they believed themselves sprung from Jupiter, and shielded by their birth; but nowadays they are not inviolable.

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    You may be looking for "the divine right of kings." --> en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Divine_right_of_kings – MDHunter Apr 12 '17 at 11:53
  • DIVINE RIGHT! Yes, that's it! :) – AleksandrH Apr 12 '17 at 11:53
  • I'm thinking there's also a 50-cent word for this, but it's not coming to me. – Hot Licks Apr 12 '17 at 11:56
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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it belongs on the History SE site. – Edwin Ashworth Apr 12 '17 at 18:18
  • @EdwinAshworth Well, to be fair, the question is less about history and more about a term request – AleksandrH Apr 12 '17 at 18:19

Divine right of kings

The entry in the Oxford Dictionary online states:

The doctrine that kings derive their authority from God not their subjects, from which it follows that rebellion is the worst of political crimes. It was enunciated in Britain in the 16th and 17th centuries under the Stuarts and is also associated with the absolutism of Louis XIV of France.

There is also a Wikipedia article on this topic where further information can be found.

  • Thank you, but I'm hesitant to accept your answer because it's just a restatement of what MDHunter said in the comments – AleksandrH Apr 12 '17 at 12:50
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    @AleksandrH Your perogative. I hadn't read MDHunter's comment. If I had I might have drawn his attention to the comment box injunction not to answer questions in comments. One reason for this is exactly your response. This means the question is listed in the index as not having been accepted. If I had seen his comment and been detered from answering (and others too) then the question would have been indexed as having no answer. (See also my answer to english.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/2653/…) – David Apr 12 '17 at 14:03
  • Usually, a comment is given with the understanding that else someone may elaborate on it as an answer and receive credit for it. However, this answer doesn't really provide any more insight into the term than the comment does. Also, comments are not always read, so future readers may miss entirely that this is the answer the OP was looking for. Tough call.... – Canis Lupus Apr 12 '17 at 14:04
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    @CanisLupus — Sorry, I'm not party to that understanding and it does not appear anywhere in the official guidelines to this site. Of course it's up to the individual whether or not they score the answer. I've already explained how and why I answered. – David Apr 12 '17 at 14:08
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    Without prejudice to my previously stated position, I have added a dictionary definition to my answer to give it a little (Royal?) padding. – David Apr 12 '17 at 14:12

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