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NiccolІ Machiavelli

It ought to be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success, than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things.
NiccolІ Machiavelli success
If we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved.
NiccolІ Machiavelli love
Friendships that are won by awards, and not by greatness and nobility of soul, although deserved, yet are not real, and cannot be depended upon in time of adversity.
NiccolІ Machiavelli war
The prince must consider, as has been in part said before, how to avoid those things which will make him hated or contemptible … when neither their property nor honour is touched, the majority of men live content, and he has only to contend with the ambition of a few, whom he can curb with ease in many ways.
NiccolІ Machiavelli art
The first method for estimating the intelligence of a ruler is to look at the men he has around him.
NiccolІ Machiavelli intelligence
There are three classes of intellects: one which comprehends by itself; another which appreciates what others comprehend; and a third which neither comprehends by itself nor by the showing of others; the first is the most excellent, the second is good, and the third is useless.
NiccolІ Machiavelli self
Occasionally words must serve to veil the facts. But let this happen in such a way that no one become aware of it; or, if it should be noticed, excuses must be at hand to be produced immediately.
NiccolІ Machiavelli war
In judging policies we should consider the results that have been achieved through them rather than the means by which they have been executed.
NiccolІ Machiavelli cute
Original Italian title: Il Principe (written c. 1505)
NiccolІ Machiavelli
Upon this, one has to remark that 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.
NiccolІ Machiavelli fear
The Romans never allowed a trouble spot to remain simply to avoid going to war over it, because they knew that wars don't just go away, they are only postponed to someone else's advantage. Therefore, they made war with Philip and Antiochus in Greece, in order not to have to fight them in Italy... They never went by that saying which you constantly hear from the wiseacres of our day, that time heals all things. They trusted rather their own character and prudence— knowing perfectly well that time contains the seeds of all things, good as well as bad.
NiccolІ Machiavelli war
If someone puts up the argument that King Louis gave the Romagna to Pope Alexander, and the kingdom of Naples to Spain, in order to avoid a war, I would answer as I did before: that you should never let things get out of hand in order to avoid war. You don't avoid such a war, you merely postpone it, to your own disadvantage.
NiccolІ Machiavelli war
A prudent man should always follow in the path trodden by great men and imitate those who are most excellent.
NiccolІ Machiavelli men
It ought to be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success, than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things. Because the innovator has for enemies all those who have done well under the old conditions, and lukewarm defenders in those who may do well under the new. This coolness arises partly from fear of the opponents, who have the laws on their side, and partly from the incredulity of men, who do not readily believe in new things until they have had a long experience of them.
NiccolІ Machiavelli success
Hence it comes that all armed prophets have been victorious, and all unarmed prophets have been destroyed.
NiccolІ Machiavelli
The chief foundations of all states, new as well as old or composite, are good laws and good arms; and as there cannot be good laws where the state is not well armed, it follows that where they are well armed they have good laws.
NiccolІ Machiavelli good
A prince ought to have no other aim or thought, nor select anything else for his study, than war and its rules and discipline; for this is the sole art that belongs to him who rules, and it is of such force that it not only upholds those who are born princes, but it often enables men to rise from a private station to that rank. And, on the contrary, it is seen that when princes have thought more of ease than of arms they have lost their states. And the first cause of your losing it is to neglect this art; and what enables you to acquire a state is to be master of the art.
NiccolІ Machiavelli war
Among other evils which being unarmed brings you, it causes you to be despised.
NiccolІ Machiavelli evil
Many have imagined republics and principalities which have never been seen or known to exist in reality; for how we live is so far removed from how we ought to live, that he who abandons what is done for what ought to be done, will rather bring about his own ruin than his preservation.
NiccolІ Machiavelli reality
Still, a prince should make himself feared in such a way that if he does not gain love, he at any rate avoids hatred; for fear and the absence of hatred may well go together, and will be always attained by one who abstains from interfering with the property of his citizens and subjects or with their women. And when he is obliged to take the life of any one, to do so when there is a proper justification and manifest reason for it; but above all he must abstain from taking the property of others, for men forget more easily the death of their father than the loss of their patrimony. Then also pretexts for seizing property are never wanting, and one who begins to live by rapine will always find some reason for taking the goods of others, whereas causes for taking life are rarer and more quickly destroyed.
NiccolІ Machiavelli love
A prince never lacks legitimate reasons to break his promise.
NiccolІ Machiavelli reason
Every one sees what you appear to be, few really know what you are, and those few dare not oppose themselves to the opinion of the many, who have the majesty of the state to defend them.
NiccolІ Machiavelli man
A prince ought to have two fears, one from within, on account of his subjects, the other from without, on account of external powers. From the latter he is defended by being well armed and having good allies, and if he is well armed he will have good friends, and affairs will always remain quiet within when they are quiet without, unless they should have been already disturbed by conspiracy; and even should affairs outside be disturbed, if he has carried out his preparations and has lived as I have said, as long as he does not despair, he will resist every attack.
NiccolІ Machiavelli fear
The best fortress which a prince can possess is the affection of his people.
NiccolІ Machiavelli people
The first opinion which one forms of a prince, and of his understanding, is by observing the men he has around him; and when they are capable and faithful he may always be considered wise, because he has known how to recognize the capable and to keep them faithful. But when they are otherwise one cannot form a good opinion of him, for the prime error which he made was in choosing them. (as tranlsated by W. K. Marriott)
NiccolІ Machiavelli faith
There is no other way of guarding oneself against flattery than by letting men understand that they will not offend you by speaking the truth; but when everyone can tell you the truth, you lose their respect.
NiccolІ Machiavelli truth
Io iudico bene questo, che sia meglio essere impetuoso che respettivo; perch
NiccolІ Machiavelli
Where the willingness is great, the difficulties cannot be great.
NiccolІ Machiavelli will
God is not willing to do everything, and thus take away our free will and that share of glory which belongs to us.
NiccolІ Machiavelli will
ognuno vede quello che tu pari, pochi sentono quello che tu se; e quelli pochi non ardiseano opporsi alla opinione di molti che abbino la maest
NiccolІ Machiavelli sea
Whenever men are not obliged to fight from necessity, they fight from ambition; which is so powerful in human breasts, that it never leaves them no matter to what rank they rise.
NiccolІ Machiavelli power
Anyone who studies present and ancient affairs will easily see how in all cities and all peoples there still exist, and have always existed, the same desires and passions.
NiccolІ Machiavelli people
Quotes from translations of Discorsi sopra la prima deca di Tito Livio; 3 vols. published between 1512–1517 (Discourses on the First Ten Books of Titus Livius)
NiccolІ Machiavelli quotes
As all those have shown who have discussed civil institutions, and as every history is full of examples, it is necessary to whoever arranges to found a Republic and establish laws in it, to presuppose that all men are bad and that they will use their malignity of mind every time they have the opportunity; and if such malignity is hidden for a time, it proceeds from the unknown reason that would not be known because the experience of the contrary had not been seen, but time, which is said to be the father of every truth, will cause it to be discovered.
NiccolІ Machiavelli truth
Men never do good unless necessity drives them to it; but when they are free to choose and can do just as they please, confusion and disorder become rampant.
NiccolІ Machiavelli good
The demands of a free populace, too, are very seldom harmful to liberty, for they are due either to the populace being oppressed or to the suspicious that it is going to be oppressed... and, should these impressions be false, a remedy is provided in the public platform on which some man of standing can get up, appeal to the crowd, and show that it is mistaken. And though, asremarks, the populace may be ignorant, it is capable of grasping the truth and readily yields when a man, worthy of confidence, lays the truth before it.
NiccolІ Machiavelli truth
So in all human affairs one notices, if one examines them closely, that it is impossible to remove one inconvenience without another emerging.
NiccolІ Machiavelli man
I am firmly convinced, therefore, that to set up a republic which is to last a long time, the way to set about it is to constitute it as Sparta and Venice were constituted; to place it in a strong position, and so to fortify it that no one will dream of taking it by a sudden assault; and, on the other hand, not to make it so large as to appear formidable to its neighbors. It should in this way be able to enjoy its form of government for a long time. For war is made on a commonwealth for two reasons: to subjugate it, and for fear of being subjugated by it.
NiccolІ Machiavelli fear
The people resemble a wild beast, which, naturally fierce and accustomed to live in the woods, has been brought up, as it were, in a prison and in servitude, and having by accident got its liberty, not being accustomed to search for its food, and not knowing where to conceal itself, easily becomes the prey of the first who seeks to incarcerate it again.
NiccolІ Machiavelli people
It was the verdict of ancient writers that men afflict themselves in evil and weary themselves in the good, and that the same effects result from both of these passions. For whenever men are not obliged to fight from necessity, they fight from ambition; which is so powerful in human breasts, that it never leaves them no matter to what rank they rise. The reason is that nature has so created men that they are able to desire everything but are not able to attain everything: so that the desire being always greater than the acquisition, there results discontent with the possession and little satisfaction to themselves from it. From this arises the changes in their fortunes; for as men desire, some to have more, some in fear of losing their acquisition, there ensues enmity and war, from which results the ruin of that province and the elevation of another.
NiccolІ Machiavelli fear
Anyone who studies present and ancient affairs will easily see how in all cities and all peoples there still exist, and have always existed, the same desires and passions. Thus, it is an easy matter for him who carefully examines past events to foresee future events in a republic and to apply the remedies employed by the ancients, or, if old remedies cannot be found, to devise new ones based upon the similarity of the events. But since these matters are neglected or not understood by those who read, or, if understood, remain unknown to those who govern, the result is that the same problems always exist in every era.
NiccolІ Machiavelli people
It is enough to ask somebody for his weapons without saying 'I want to kill you with them', because when you have his weapons in hand, you can satisfy your desire.
NiccolІ Machiavelli desire
Whenbecame consul and was keen on getting the province of Africa, promising that Carthage should be completely destroyed, and the senate would not agree to this becausewas against it, he threatened to appeal to the people, for he knew full well how pleasing such projects are to the populace.
NiccolІ Machiavelli art
It is truly a marvelous thing to consider to what greatness Athens arrived in the space of one hundred years after she freed herself from the tyranny of ; but, above all, it is even more marvelous to consider the greatness Rome reached when she freed herself from her kings. The reason is easy to understand, for it is the common good and not private gain that makes cities great. Yet, without a doubt, this common good is observed only in republics, for in them everything that promotes it is practised, and however much damage it does to this or that private individual, those who benefit from the said common good are so numerous that they are able to advance in spite of the inclination of the few citizens who are oppressed by it.
NiccolІ Machiavelli self
The end of the republic is to enervate and to weaken all other bodies so as to increase its own body.
NiccolІ Machiavelli body
Cunning and deceit will every time serve a man better than force to rise from a base condition to great fortune.
NiccolІ Machiavelli time
I assert once again as a truth to which history as a whole bears witness that men may second their fortune, but cannot oppose it; that they may weave its warp, but cannot break it. Yet they should never give up, because there is always hope, though they know not the end and more towards it along roads which cross one another and as yet are unexplored; and since there is hope, they should not despair, no matter what fortune brings or in what travail they find themselves.
NiccolІ Machiavelli truth
This return of Republics back to their principles also results from the simple virtue of one man, without depending on any law that excites him to any execution: none the less, they are of such influence and example that good men desire to imitate him, and the wicked are ashamed to lead a life contrary to those examples.
NiccolІ Machiavelli life
It is not titles that make men illustrious, but men who make titles illustrious.
NiccolІ Machiavelli men
Quotations from translations of Dell'arte della guerra ; also known as On the Art of War
NiccolІ Machiavelli art
I believe that it is possible for one to praise, without concern, any man after he is dead since every reason and supervision for adulation is lacking.
NiccolІ Machiavelli man
No proceeding is better than that which you have concealed from the enemy until the time you have executed it. To know how to recognize an opportunity in war, and take it, benefits you more than anything else. Nature creates few men brave, industry and training makes many. Discipline in war counts more than fury.
NiccolІ Machiavelli war
Original Italian title: Istorie Fiorentine
NiccolІ Machiavelli
It may be observed, that provinces amid the vicissitudes to which they are subject, pass from order into confusion, and afterward recur to a state of order again; for the nature of mundane affairs not allowing them to continue in an even course, when they have arrived at their greatest perfection, they soon begin to decline. In the same manner, having been reduced by disorder, and sunk to their utmost state of depression, unable to descend lower, they, of necessity, reascend; and thus from good they gradually decline to evil, and from evil again return to good. The reason is, that valor produces peace; peace, repose; repose, disorder; disorder, ruin; so from disorder order springs; from order virtue, and from this, glory and good fortune.
NiccolІ Machiavelli war
If you only notice human proceedings, you may observe that all who attain great power and riches, make use of either force or fraud; and what they have acquired either by deceit or violence, in order to conceal the disgraceful methods of attainment, they endeavor to sanctify with the false title of honest gains. Those who either from imprudence or want of sagacity avoid doing so, are always overwhelmed with servitude and poverty; for faithful servants are always servants, and honest men are always poor; nor do any ever escape from servitude but the bold and faithless, or from poverty, but the rapacious and fraudulent. God and nature have thrown all human fortunes into the midst of mankind; and they are thus attainable rather by rapine than by industry, by wicked actions rather than by good. Hence it is that men feed upon each other, and those who cannot defend themselves must be worried.
NiccolІ Machiavelli faith
Wars begin when you will, but they do not end when you please.
NiccolІ Machiavelli you

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