The Kinds of Principalities and the Means by Which They Are Acquired Machiavelli describes the different kinds of states, arguing that all states are either republics or principalities. Principalities can be divided into hereditary principalities and new principalities. New principalities are either completely new or new appendages to existing states. By fortune or strength, a prince can acquire a new principality with his own army or with the arms of others.
Summary[ edit ] Each part of The Prince has been commented on over centuries. The work has a recognizable structure, for the most part indicated by the author himself.
It can be summarized as follows: In the first sentence Machiavelli uses the word " state " Italian stato which could also mean " status " in order to neutrally cover "all forms of organization of supreme political power, whether republican or princely".
The way in which the word state came to acquire this modern type of meaning during the Renaissance has been the subject of many academic discussions, with this sentence and similar ones in the works of Machiavelli being considered particularly important. More importantly, and less traditionally, he distinguishes new princedoms from hereditary established princedoms.
For such a prince, "unless extraordinary vices cause him to be hated, it is reasonable to expect that his subjects will be naturally well disposed towards him". Normally, these types of works were addressed only to hereditary princes.
He thinks Machiavelli may have been influenced by Tacitus as well as his own experience, but finds no clear predecessor for this. This categorization of regime types is also "un-Aristotelian"  and apparently simpler than the traditional one found for example in Aristotle 's Politicswhich divides regimes into those ruled by a single monarch, an oligarchyor by the people, in a democracy.
Xenophonon the other hand, made exactly the same distinction between types of rulers in the beginning of his Education of Cyrus where he says that, concerning the knowledge of how to rule human beings, Cyrus the Greathis exemplary prince, was very different "from all other kings, both those who have inherited their thrones from their fathers and those who have gained their crowns by their own efforts".
More generally, Machiavelli emphasizes that one should have regard not only for present problems but also for the future ones. Machiavelli explained that in his time the Near East was again ruled by an empire, the Ottoman Empirewith similar characteristics to that of Darius — seen from the viewpoint of a potential conqueror.
In some cases the old king of the conquered kingdom depended on his lords. These are easy to enter but difficult to hold. When the kingdom revolves around the king, with everyone else his servant, then it is difficult to enter but easy to hold.
The solution is to eliminate the old bloodline of the prince. Machiavelli used the Persian empire of Darius IIIconquered by Alexander the Greatto illustrate this point and then noted that the Medici, if they think about it, will find this historical example similar to the "kingdom of the Turk" Ottoman Empire in their time — making this a potentially easier conquest to hold than France would be.
Conquered Free States, with their own laws and orders Chapter 5 [ edit ] Gilbert Gilbert supposed the need to discuss conquering free republics is linked to Machiavelli's project to unite Italy, which contained some free republics. As he also notes, the chapter in any case makes it clear that holding such a state is highly difficult for a prince.
Machiavelli gives three options: Ruin them, as Rome destroyed Carthageand also as Machiavelli says the Romans eventually had to do in Greece, even though they had wanted to avoid it. Go to live there or install colonies, if you are a prince of a republic.
Let them keep their own orders but install a puppet regime. Totally New States Chapters 6—9 [ edit ] Conquests by virtue Chapter 6 [ edit ] Machiavelli described Moses as a conquering prince, who founded new modes and orders by force of arms, which he used willingly to kill many of his own people.
The Bible describes the reasons behind his success differently. Princes who rise to power through their own skill and resources their "virtue" rather than luck tend to have a hard time rising to the top, but once they reach the top they are very secure in their position.
This is because they effectively crush their opponents and earn great respect from everyone else.
Machiavelli supports the idea that a prince use his power for the ultimate benefit of all, but he also does not condemn the use of any unpleasant means in order for the prince to maintain his power. His ideas both compare and contrast to the methods used by Prince Hamlet of Denmark in Shakespeare's Hamlet. Dec 10, · Machiavelli has long been called a teacher of evil. But the author of “The Prince” never urged evil for evil’s sake. The proper aim of a leader is to maintain his state (and, not. The Prince by Niccolo Machiavelli. acquired either by the military power of the prince himself or of others, or else by fortune or by ability. CHAPTER 2. In this way a prince of average powers can maintain himself in his state unless he loses it by some.
Because they are strong and more self-sufficient, they have to make fewer compromises with their allies. Machiavelli writes that reforming an existing order is one of the most dangerous and difficult things a prince can do.
Part of the reason is that people are naturally resistant to change and reform. Those who benefited from the old order will resist change very fiercely.
By contrast, those who can benefit from the new order will be less fierce in their support, because the new order is unfamiliar and they are not certain it will live up to its promises. Moreover, it is impossible for the prince to satisfy everybody's expectations.
Inevitably, he will disappoint some of his followers.
Therefore, a prince must have the means to force his supporters to keep supporting him even when they start having second thoughts, otherwise he will lose his power.
Only armed prophets, like Moses, succeed in bringing lasting change.The Prince (Italian: Il Principe [il ˈprintʃipe]) is a 16th-century political treatise by the Italian diplomat and political theorist Niccolò Machiavelli.
From correspondence a version appears to have been distributed in , using a Latin title, De Principatibus (Of Principalities). Author: Niccolò Machiavelli. Machiavelli supports the idea that a prince use his power for the ultimate benefit of all, but he also does not condemn the use of any unpleasant means in order for the prince to maintain his power.
His ideas both compare and contrast to the methods used by Prince Hamlet of Denmark in Shakespeare's Hamlet. The Prince by Niccolo Machiavelli. acquired either by the military power of the prince himself or of others, or else by fortune or by ability.
CHAPTER 2. In this way a prince of average powers can maintain himself in his state unless he loses it by some. Niccolo Machiavelli (–).
The Prince. The Harvard Classics.
– Introductory Note NICCOLO MACHIAVELLI, one of the most brilliant and versatile intellects of the Italian Renaissance, was born at Florence, May 3, He entered the public service as a young.
In particular, Machiavelli employs the concept of virtù to refer to the range of personal qualities that the prince will find it necessary to acquire in order to “maintain his state” and to “achieve great things,” the two standard markers of power for him.
Gradually, resentment will fade, and the people will come to appreciate the resulting benefits of the prince’s rule. Most important, a prince should be consistent in the way he treats his subjects. Summary — Chapter IX: Concerning the Civil Principality.
The other way a prince can come to power is through the favor of his fellow citizens.