Machiavellian Perception of Reality Sample Essay

Written about five centuries ago during Italy’s epoch of refractory pandemonium. Niccolo Machiavelli’s. The Prince became the “How-To” book for the effectual acquisition. administration. and retainment of power over princedoms. Within the pages of this political treatise. Machiavelli duly explains the qualities of a successful prince. However. he besides explains how the importance of these very qualities affect the prince’s public image and repute and how these play a critical function in the keeping of power while maintaining others from cabaling and lifting against him.

The ideal prince should be virtuous in that in that he should be “merciful. faithful. humane. spiritual and upright” ( Machiavelli. Chapter Eighteen. 2012 ) . However. it is impossible for a prince to hold all of the aforesaid qualities doing it more of import to make the perceptual experience of holding those good qualities. However. he should besides be willing to abandon those virtuousnesss if the prince wants to keep his ain. to cognize how to make incorrect and do usage of it harmonizing to necessity. It is besides necessary for the prince to be sufficiently prudent and cognize how to avoid the “reproach of those frailties which would lose him his province ; and besides to maintain himself. if it be possible. from those which would non lose him it” ( Machiavelli. Chapter Fifteen. 2012 ) .

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This perceptual experience is the world Machiavelli believes to be critical to the effectivity of the prince. The slightest sensed failing or unethical behaviour can take to the prince’s ruin and the loss of his province devising it imperative to expose capablenesss and behavior beyond warning. “Therefore it is unneeded for a prince to hold all the good qualities I have enumerated. but it is really necessary to look to hold them. And I shall make bold to state this besides. that to hold them and ever to detect them is deleterious. and that to look to hold them is utile …but with a head so framed that should you necessitate to be so. you may be able and cognize how to alter to the opposite” ( Machiavelli. Chapter Eighteen. 2012 ) .

A respectable repute is necessary since it parallels public image. The people will judge everything the prince publicly says and does. which will so go his sensed repute by those really people. “For this ground a prince ought to take attention that he ne’er lets anything faux pas from his lips that is non full with the above-mentioned five qualities. that he may look to him who see and hears him wholly merciful. faithful. humane. unsloped. and spiritual. There is nil more necessary to look to hold than this last quality. inasmuch as work forces judge by and large more by the oculus than by the manus. because it belongs to everybody to see you. to few to come in touch with you. Every one sees what you appear to be. few truly know what you are. and those few daring non oppose themselves to the sentiment of the many. who have the stateliness of the province to support them ; and in the actions of all work forces. and particularly of princes. which it is non prudent to dispute. one Judgess by the result” ( Machiavelli. Chapter Eighteen. 2012 ) .

Machiavelli besides confronts the reputational hazards and concern of liberalness and beastliness. With liberalness. the prince by and large leaves the people entirely largely tax-exempt. Unfortunately. the more liberally the prince gives. the poorer he will necessarily go. Therefore. he creates the necessity of taxing the people. which fosters bitterness among the people. However. Machiavelli states that it is better for the prince to be considered a miser for that it is better for the prince to be considered a miser for a piece to in turn regulate better and give more to the people in the long-run. “Therefore it is wiser to hold a repute for beastliness which brings reproach without hatred. than to be compelled through seeking a repute for liberalness to incur a name for edacity which begets reproach with hatred” ( Machiavelli. Chapter Sixteen. 2012 ) .

Furthermore. it is best for the prince to be miserly with his ain exchequer but alternatively be free and munificent with the wealth taken from others during wartime. This will give him the repute for generousness and liberalness without cost to him. If the prince does non hold this excess wealth. Machiavelli advises the prince to abandon the thought of liberalness in the concern of practicality.

Additionally. every prince should desire the repute for being clement and non cruel. However. this is simply portion of the perceptual experience of world sing this public image and repute. “Therefore a prince. so long as he keeps his topics united and loyal. ought non to mind the reproach of inhuman treatment ; because…he will be more merciful than those who. through excessively much clemency. let upsets to originate. from which follow slaying or robberies” ( Machiavelli. Chapter Seventeen. 2012 ) . The people are willing to forgive a small inhuman treatment if it keeps the peace. warrants their safety. and upholds the jurisprudence.

At last. Machiavelli’s ill-famed inquiry arises. “whether it be better to be loved than feared or feared than loved? ” ( Machiavelli. Chapter Seventeen. 2012 ) The ideal reply would be for the prince to be both feared and loved. but it is hard. if non impossible. to blend both into one person. Therefore. it “is much safer to feared than loved” ( Machiavelli. Chapter Seventeen. 2012 ) . As long the prince is successful. work forces will offer the prince their blood. belongings. life and kids but when the clip comes they will turn against the prince. Friendships obtained through expenses and non through munificence are undependable and the prince is in hazard. Ultimately. work forces will be less loath to pique a prince who is beloved than a prince who is feared. This fright shields the prince “by a apprehension of penalty which ne’er fails” ( Machiavelli. Chapter Seventeen. 2012 ) . Consequently. the prince should besides “inspire fright in such a manner that. if he does non win love. he avoids hatred ; because he can digest really good being feared whilst he is non hated” ( Machiavelli. Chapter Seventeen. 2012 ) .

Machiavelli asserts that the public image and repute of the prince are of critical importance because they play a cardinal function in maintaining the prince in power. Therefore. it is imperative for the prince to avoid any frailties or actions that will impact the people’s perceptual experience of his unity and capableness as a leader. Although the people despise the prince but do non detest him. the prince increases his opportunity of maintaining power. When the people fear him and fright reprisals but do non love him. he improves his opportunity to squelch confederacies. While the people have the perceptual experience that he has all the good qualities of a prince. they are less likely to lift against him. Consequently. when the people are non oppressed. are by and large happy. non excessively taxed. feel protected. maintain united and loyal there is less opportunity of others or foreigners assailing him and he will go on to keep power. Therefore. when the prince’s public image and repute drama such a cardinal function in keeping power. Machiavelli is right in stating it “is much safer to be feared than loved” ( Machiavelli. Chapter Seventeen. 2012 ) .


Machiavelli. N. ( 2012 ) . Chapter Fifteen. In The Prince ( W. K. Marriott. Trans. . Kindle Edition ed. ) . New York: Doubleday.

Machiavelli. N. ( 2012 ) . Chapter Sixteen. In The Prince ( W. K. Marriott. Trans. . Kindle Edition ed. ) . New York: Doubleday.

Machiavelli. N. ( 2012 ) . Chapter Seventeen. In The Prince ( W. K. Marriott. Trans. . Kindle Edition ed. ) . New York: Doubleday.

Machiavelli. N. ( 2012 ) . Chapter Eighteen. In The Prince ( W. K. Marriott. Trans. . Kindle Edition ed. ) . New York: Doubleday.


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