Machiavelli ties virtue very closely to that of prudence. He defines virtue as acting exceptionally and draws a distinction between morality and virtue. In many respects Mach... ... middle of paper ... ... because although one could be reveled as a martyr, the possible effects of a new prince’s statutes far outweigh the benefits of being a martyr. As a martyr people simply become energized and support your cause. However, if a Prince is such martyr, that would mean a new Prince is in power and could instill far worse conditions upon the people.
The text type is like a guide that he writes to instruct the reader on how to become a better prince. The purpose of this chapter is to convince the reader in a way which depicts how it is no use to be merciful, if by doing so, the prince allows disorder in the state to get out of control. The reader is the person who wants to rule a principality based on Machiavelli’s instructions. Machiavelli clearly explains how there’s a difference between the misuse of mercy and cruelty. “Every prince must desire to be considered merciful and not cruel; nevertheless, he must take care not to misuse this mercy.” This implies that there’s a fine line between what is considered cruel and the “misuse of mercy” according to Machiavelli.
Machiavelli writes in The Qualities of the Prince, that it is better to be a miser and slightly disliked for a while than to be generous and be liked for a while than hated. If you’re a generous prince you can only be so for a short time before having to raise taxes and having people realize that you’re not that generous in all reality. Once a prince gets a reputation for being hated he will feel any slight unrest of his people. On the other hand if a prince is miserly from the get go he will be received gratefully when he decides to be generous. Using this quality of miserliness he has the ability to expand and defend his kingdom and be ready for any unforeseen events without having to burden his people, which, in turn leads to economic growth.
In The Prince, Machiavelli believes that the key to power is a combination of fear and love; in the Discourses on Livy, he writes that knowledge of the past is important, and Bacon seems to think that being a private man while knowing much about others is most vital. Machiavelli’s The Prince shows how to gain political power in anyway possible. He is almost completely pragmatic in the book with little regard to morals. He states at the outset of the book that he is not dealing with republics but with princes and the best ways for them to rule over the people (1). Machiavelli believes that one of the most needed traits in a prince is that he be both feared and loved.
One critic claims that traditionally there are two common ways to interpret Prince Hal's development. The first is to see it as a celebration of a great king in training who grows in his responsibility and develops into a mature political leader. The second view sees Prince Hal as a cold Machiavel who uses his friends as means to a political end, without much regard for their feelings. (Johnston 1). Hal understands that those of high birth have a greater responsibility to be honorable.
Miserliness is considered a fault. Yet, a miserly prince "will come to be considered more generous when it is realized that his revenues are sufficient to defend himself against enemies that attack him, and to undertake campaigns without imposing special taxes on the people" (p.56). Likewise, starting a war is considered an immoral act by many. Yet, a prince should not allow troubles "to develop in order to avoid fighting a war for wars can not really be avoided, but are merely postponed to the advantage of others" (p.11). Avoiding war may ... ... middle of paper ... ... the ugly political process preceding the results has overshadowed positive results like a lower deficit and improved economy.
Richard was born a King, and knows no life other than that of royalty. Unfortunately the lesson that must know men to rule them costs him the thrown. Richard's lesson influences his usurper and his usurper's heir to the thrown, demonstrating to them both the value of humility. After exiling Henry, Richard takes the opportunity to criticize his "courtship to the common people." His speech at first seems to merit Henry for his sociability, but it quickly becomes clear that, to Richard, commoners are not fit for royal consumption: How he did seem to dive into their hearts With humble and familiar courtesy, What reverence he did throw away on slaves, Wooing poor craftsmen with the craft of smiles (I.iv.25-8) Shakespeare is of course establishing Henry's ability to gather support from the masses, the very key to his victory over Richard later in the play.
He also holds forth that as a ruler, “it is better to be feared than loved, if you cannot be both” (Machiavelli, The Prince, 52). Fear not only brings respect, but it is also externally based and predictable. It does not wear off if the base character stays the same. Whereas love is the opposite in that it is internally based and a feeling you choose to feel therefore it comes and goes. Machiavelli believes that the best princes possess the qualities of both man and animal.
According to Niccolo Machiavelli “if you have to make a choice, to be feared is much safer than to be loved” (225). Machiavelli was the first philosopher of the Renaissance, and wrote The Prince which argued that leaders must do anything necessary to hold on to power. The main reason it is better to be feared is because men are evil, rotten and will only do things that benefit themselves. Men only think of themselves and it is for this reason fear can control them and keep them loyal to a leader. Since loyalty through love can be easily broken because it involves no punishment, loyalty through fear is the better choice because it involves the “dread of punishment, from which [the subjects] can never escape” (Machiavelli 226).
His reasoning behind this is, “For if two powerful neighbors of yours come to blows either they are of a quality that if one of them wins you have to fear the victor or not,” (110). The concept behind this statement is that the prince should make a decision based on which of the two will more significantly improve his intended public image. The flaw in this is that he uses the impersonal tu, indicating that his target audience for this concept is not the prince but instead the common people. He wants the subjects to know of the false rhetoric that rulers use to deceive them. Machiavelli uses Antiochus as an example of this concept but instead he ends up being an antithesis to the concept because, “Antiochus sent orators to the Achaeans…to encourage them to remain neutral,” (110).