Laura Noggle's Reviews > The Prince

The Prince by Niccolò Machiavelli
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it was amazing
bookshelves: must-reads, nonfiction, psychology-philosophy

Mandatory reading for Earthlings. Incredible insights on humanity, experience, perception, glory and honor, power and survival.

Will re-read.

“Where the willingness is great, the difficulties cannot be great.”

"And in examining their life and deeds it will be seen that they owed nothing to fortune but the opportunity which gave them matter to be shaped into the form that they thought fit; and without that opportunity their powers would have been wasted, and without their powers the opportunity would have come in vain."

- The Prince
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
October 20, 2015 – Shelved
October 21, 2015 – Shelved as: must-reads
January 27, 2018 – Shelved as: nonfiction
August 14, 2019 – Shelved as: psychology-philosophy

Comments Showing 1-9 of 9 (9 new)

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J. Sebastian I owe to fortune that I was not born in Cesare Borgia's Italy, but I love reading Macchiavelli too; here's to Fortune and Virtue.

Laura Noggle J. Sebastian wrote: "I owe to fortune that I was not born in Cesare Borgia's Italy, but I love reading Macchiavelli too; here's to Fortune and Virtue."

Hear, hear! Agreed, and brings to mind another favorite phrase: Veni, vidi, vici.

message 3: by J. Sebastian (last edited Apr 21, 2018 07:44AM) (new) - added it

J. Sebastian Yes, in Gaul, at the height of his glory. When he got back to Rome, however, he should have listened to Calpurnia, begging 'Don't go to the Forum today, Caesar.'

Perhaps his ghost would speak, 'ivi, caecus, interfectus'.

But his end was inevitable. So goes it with world-historical men. They are never happy, and often have brutal endings. Better to have stayed at home and read one's books than to have gotten involved in politics. Though Cicero would see this as a dereliction of duty for a Roman citizen; I would give my allegiance first to the peacefulRes Publica Litterarum. Yet the lure of power, for those selected by Fortune, who are able and eager to play the game, can never be ignored.

In Hegelian terms, perhaps this is what we can see in the case of Caesar:

Thesis: Roman Republic
Antithesis: Caesar
Synthesis: Early Principate ~ Augustus

Laura Noggle There's another saying: absolute power corrupts absolutely - might have something to do with all the brutal endings.
I wonder at times, if I should be more politically active - aaaand then I go back to reading books. Probably should reread this one soon.

J. Sebastian Good choice, Laura! Good choice the return to reading! :-)

message 6: by Tg (new)

Tg "For the generality of men are more motivated by fear of punishment, and power, than desire of the noble" Aristotle

J. Sebastian What book is the Aristotle quote from, Tg?

message 8: by Tg (new)

Tg j it is from his book The Nicomachean Ethics, it is under the section called the high-minded man

J. Sebastian Thanks, Tg. :-)

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