The Life and Times of Niccolò Machiavelli, Volume 2

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T. F. Unwin, 1892 - Italy - 547 pages
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Page 541 - Villari concludes his history by demonstrating that Machiavelli's conception of Italy's needs was essentially a true one. " Italy had become incapable of a religious reformation like that accomplished in Germany. Instead of springing towards God, as Savonarola had predicted; instead of seeking strength in a new conception of faith, she aimed at a recomposition of the idea of the State and the motherland. She saw in the sacrifice of all to the universal good the only possible way of political and...
Page 383 - ... ordine; e da quello buona fortuna, poi dipende e lieta. Ma non sia alcun di sì poco cervello, che creda se la sua casa...
Page 137 - The whole man seems to be an enigma — a grotesque assemblage of incongruous qualities — selfishness and generosity, cruelty and benevolence, craft and simplicity, abject villany and romantic heroism. One sentence is such as a veteran diplomatist would scarcely write in cipher for the direction of his most confidential spy : the next seems to be extracted from a theme composed by an ardent schoolboy on the death of Leonidas.
Page 141 - ... were prevented by the utter want of criticism and of that which we call historical feeling, from seeing how prodigious was the contrast between themselves and those whom they admired. There is nothing more modern than the critical spirit which dwells upon the difference between the minds of men in one age and in another; which endeavours to make each age its own interpreter, and judge what it did or produced by a relative standard.
Page 167 - ... mire, I assume courtly attire, and thus suitably clothed, enter within the ancient courts of ancient men, by whom, being cordially welcomed, I am fed with the food that alone is mine, and for which I was born, and am not ashamed to hold discourse with them, and inquire the motives of their actions; and these men in their humanity reply to me, and for the space of four hours I feel no weariness, remember no trouble, no longer fear poverty, no longer dread death; my whole being is absorbed in them.
Page 87 - CHAP. bound to love the safety of his country better than ^^^ the salvation of his soul. A Venetian of earlier date had said the same. He insisted that the Council of Ten for War should always be composed of persons who loved their country better than their souls, "because it is impossible to regulate Governments and States according to the precepts of Christian law.
Page 182 - ... have to choose the alternative. '' Love is maintained by a bond of obligation, which, owing to the wickedness of human nature, is always broken whenever it clashes with private interest ; but fear is maintained by a dread of punishment that never abandons you. Men love at their own pleasure, but fear at the pleasure of the prince, who should therefore depend upon that which is his own, not upon that which is of others.
Page 91 - To speak of the people is to speak of madmen, " for the people is a monster full of confusion and error, " and its vain beliefs are as far from truth as is Spain " from India according to Ptolemy...
Page 174 - And he who becomes master of a city accustomed to freedom and does not destroy it, may expect to be destroyed by- it, for in rebellion it has always the watchword of liberty and its ancient privileges as a rallying point, which neither time nor benefits will ever cause it to forget.
Page 499 - Poi ch' hai il sangue mio a te sì tratto, Che non si cura della propria carne ? Perchè men paia il mal futuro e il fatto Veggio in Alagna entrar lo fiordaliso , E nel Vicario suo Cristo esser catto. Veggiolo un' altra volta esser deriso ; « Veggio rinnovellar 1' aceto e il fele , E tra

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