But his health was failing and he withdrew from politics, spending his last years as a benevolent and autocratic country magnate.
During the brief interval between King Charles X.'s first and second attack upon Denmark, Gabel was employed in several secret missions to Sweden; and he took a part in the intrigues which resulted in the autocratic revolution of 1660 (see Denmark: History).
His influence in West Australia was one of an almost autocratic character, owing to the robust vigour of his personality and his success in enforcing his views (see WESTERN Australia: History).
The fierce struggle between autocratic tyranny and oligarchic disorder, which went on in intermittent fashion during the whole of his reign, cannot be here described in detail, but the chief incidents may be mentioned.
Although the idol of his victorious army, and in a position enabling him to exercise autocratic power, he laboured unostentatiously for more than a year and a half as a member of the parliament, whose authority he supported to the best of his ability.
In 1730 they offered the throne to Anne, duchess of Courland, a daughter of Ivan V., elder brother of Peter the Great, on condition of her signing a formal document by which the seat of government should be transferred from St Petersburg to Moscow, and the autocratic power should be limited and controlled by a grand council composed of their own faction.
As autocratic ruler of the nation which had long considered itself the defender of the Eastern Orthodox faith and the protector of the Slav nationalities, he could not remain inactive at such a crisis, and he gradually allowed himself to drift into a position from which he could not retreat without obtaining some tangible result.
Notwithstanding this, in 1849 he accepted the office of minister of religion and education, which he held in 1860 under the autocratic and centralizing administration of Schwarzenberg and Bach.
The members of the council were formally appointed by the Company, but the director-general actually determined who they should be, and as he was not bound by their advice they were no check to an autocratic rule.
All this was to be done, however, under the strict supervision and guidance of the autocratic power, with as little aid as possible from private initiative and with no control whatever of public opinion, because influential public opinion is apt to produce insubordination.