© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
The Prince

The Prince


by Niccolò Machiavelli

The Prince Politics Quotes

How we cite our quotes: (Chapter.Paragraph)

Quote #1

Colonies don't cost a great deal. You can send and maintain them very cheaply and they only arouse the hostility of the people whose houses and land are expropriated to give to the colonists. (3.6)

What benefit do colonies give to the main state? Does eminent domain (taking people's houses and land) fit in with the idea of protecting the state?

Quote #2

In fact I discussed the matter in Nantes with the Cardinal of Rouen when Duke Valentino (that was what people used to call Cesare Borgia, Pope Alexander's son) was invading Romagna; and when the cardinal told me that the Italians knew nothing about war, I told him that the French knew nothing about politics, because if they did they wouldn't be letting the pope grow so powerful. (3.17)

The Pope kicked the French out of Florence in 1512. Enough said.

Quote #3

From which we can infer a general rule that always holds, or almost always: that to help another ruler to grow powerful is to prepare your own ruin; because it takes flair or military strength to build up a new power, and both will seem threatening to the person who has benefited from them. (3.17)

The complicated moves that Machiavelli advises are like a mixture of chess and poker. Guard your king and take as many pieces as you can, but don't forget to keep your game face on.

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...