Having spent his childhood most peacefully, Niccolo Machiavelli, the great Italian philosopher witnessed Italy’s state of decadence and intense political conflict in his adulthood. The then Italy was not a unified country rather, it was an accumulation of city-states, each with its own court and ruler, each of them attempting to addition control over the others. Italy was not only a place of domestic intrigue but also a battleground for the force-ravenous French, the Spanish, the Germans and the Catholic Church under the power of the popes.
The main cities like that of Florence, Milan, Naples and Venice fought fire with fire in order to establish their control over Italy. Each of these forces endeavoured to seek after a system of playing the different powers off of one other, yet they likewise occupied with less fair practices, for example shakedown and savagery. The year 1494 saw the expulsion of the despotic family of Medici who had ruled Florence for decades and also observed the rise of Girolamo Savonarola, a Dominican religious zealot who acceded to the throne shortly thereafter. Much being known for his criticism of the leadership of the Church, Savonarola’s reign was anathematized in 1497 by Pope Alexander VI.
No sooner after the return of Machiavelli to Florence, Italy was invaded by Charles VIII of France –this being one of the first of several French invasions that would occur during Machiavelli’s lifetime. Machiavelli entered the Florentine government as soon as he turned twenty-one and got the opportunity to meet the greatest envoys of his time – Pope Alexander and Kind Louis XII. Though both Pope Alexander and King Louis XII influenced Machiavelli’s thoughts, it was the intrigue of Cesare Bo...
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...ples and announces them to be moral and ultimate instead of being instrumental. Backing up Machiavelli’s idea of Christian morality he explains that if a private citizen objects to the political methods of Machiavelli, then he’d rather lead a ‘morally good life,’ (Berlin 57) seek a corner of his own and must not make himself responsible for the life of others or expect good fortune. He says that morality in a ruler can create vulnerability and Machiavelli’s idea of placing personal success over personal morality helps in the making of a good prince.
Finally, Berlin justifies Machiavelli by showing that The Prince is a discipline from which men can gain knowledge and it is not an erudite pastime to be coddled in. And that Machiavelli’s attitude has always been social and not individual.
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