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Need to seize a country? Have enemies you must destroy? In this handbook for despots and tyrants, the Renaissance statesman Machiavelli sets forth how to accomplish this and more, while avoiding the awkwardness of becoming generally hated and despised.
"Men ought either to be well treated or crushed, because they can avenge themselves of lighter injuries, of more serious ones they cannot; therefore the injury that is to be done to a man ought to be of such a kind that one does not stand in fear of revenge."
For nearly 500 years, Machiavelli's observations on Realpolitik have shocked and appalled the timid and romantic, and for many his name was equivalent to the devil's own. Yet, The Prince was the first attempt to write of the world of politics as it is, rather than sanctimoniously of how it should be, and thus The Prince remains as honest and relevant today as when Machiavelli first put quill to parchment, and warned the junior statesman to know how to do wrong, and to make use of it or not according to necessity.
Described as a practical rule-book for the diplomat and a handbook of evil, this work provides an uncompromising picture of the true nature of power.
|Machiavelli's Principal Works|
|Letter to the Magnificent Lorenzo de Medici||1|
|I||How many kinds of principality there are and the ways in which they are acquired||5|
|IV||Why the kingdom of Darius conquered by Alexander did not rebel against his successors after his death||13|
|V||How cities or principalities which lived under their own laws should be administered after being conquered||16|
|VI||New principalities acquired by one's own arms and prowess||17|
|VII||New principalities acquired with the help of fortune and foreign arms||20|
|VIII||Those who come to power by crime||27|
|IX||The constitutional principality||31|
|X||How the strength of every principality should be measured||34|
|XII||Military organization and mercenary troops||39|
|XIII||Auxiliary, composite, and native troops||43|
|XIV||How a prince should organize his militia||47|
|XV||The things for which men, and especially princes, are praised or blamed||49|
|XVI||Generosity and parsimony||51|
|XVII||Cruelty and compassion; and whether it is better to be loved than feared, or the reverse||53|
|XVIII||How princes should honour their word||56|
|XIX||The need to avoid contempt and hatred||58|
|XX||Whether fortresses and many of the other present-day expedients to which princes have recourse are useful or not||67|
|XXI||How a prince must act to win honour||71|
|XXII||A prince's personal staff||75|
|XXIII||How flatterers must be shunned||76|
|XXIV||Why the Italian princes have lost their states||78|
|XXV||How far human affairs are governed by fortune, and how fortune can be opposed||79|
|XXVI||Exhortation to liberate Italy from the barbarians||82|
|Glossary of Proper Names||86|