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The Prince

The Prince


by Niccolò Machiavelli

The Prince Questions

Bring on the tough stuff - there’s not just one right answer.

  1. What do you think that Machiavelli would write if he were writing The Prince: Part II for the United States? For countries in the Eurozone? For developing economies?
  2. How would The Prince be different if Machiavelli didn't bookend it with appeals to Lorenzo de' Medici?
  3. Machiavelli spends all of this time telling rulers how to conquer fortune, but fortune beats one of his favorite examples, Cesare Borgia. So, which is a stronger force here, virtù or fortune?
  4. What might The Prince have looked like if Machiavelli were German, French, or Spanish instead of a Florentine?
  5. After The Prince was published, there was a whole wave of anti-Machiavellian literature. How do you think Machiavelli would defend himself? Would he even bother?
  6. Make a list of some famous rulers in history. Did they follow Machiavelli's plan? How or how not?
  7. Imagine that you are Lorenzo and you have just read Machiavelli's strange present to you. How would you respond?

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