Kingship is present throughout both The Cid and Cinna, reflecting French absolutism very well in both of the plays. While this idea of absolutism in France could be considered tyrannical, the King usually had good intentions with his rulings and ideas, which those ideas were what became laws. Absolutism, defined as “a type of national monarchy in which the monarch has great power and tends to be looked up to with awe and reverence. In spite of the name, the power of the monarch is limited by the need to have some measure of support by the landed aristocracy.” However, there are limits that kingship must have in order to avoid a tyranny. Since whatever the king says goes, it may be a little unclear in France as to when the king has too much power. “Absolute rule meant that the power of the monarch was, in theory, unlimited except by divine law or by what was called ‘natural law’. In an absolute society, the only person who could change the powers of the monarch was the monarch him/herself. As such, it is difficult to think in terms of an absolute monarch diluting his/her own authority and power.” Throughout The Cid and Cinna, there are certain examples that illustrate Corneille’s views of what makes a good king and a bad king, such as a tyrant.
First, Corneille begins with The Cid. In Act I, Scene III, the Count is talking with Diegue discussing the powers of a king.
“Kings may be great, but they are men like us,
They can be wrong as other mortals are.