Stewart K. answered 05/29/21
AP, Research Paper, and Classroom History, Gov, and Geo Tutoring
The context for Montesquieu's political writings (Persian Letters 1721, Spirit of the Laws 1748) was the rising power of the royal bureaucracy and the corresponding decrease in the autonomy of regional elites. The regional parlements, or courts, staffed by lawyers and local notables, fought against the centralizing royal bureaucracy. The crisis didn't come until after Montesquieu's death in 1755, but his writings were still influential among supporters of the parlements. His Persian Letters were a veiled criticism of royal autocracy, and the Spirit of the Laws directly supported the idea of the autonomy of law courts from the administrative and law giving powers of the king. Liberal reformists in the revolutionary era, like the American James Madison, seized on Montesquieu's ideas to support a republican system of government.