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Quotes

Quote #1

Again this is in the normal, natural way of things: a ruler is bound to upset the people in his new territories, first with his occupying army and then with all the endless injustices consequent on any invasion. (3.1)

What, exactly, is "normal" and "natural" about "endless injustices?" We're not sure if Machiavelli deserved all the bad press he got when The Prince was published, but with quotes like this it's not too hard to see why people were pissed.

Quote #2

Someone might object: but Louis gave Romagna to Pope Alexander and Naples to Spain to avoid war; in which case, let me repeat what I said earlier: you must never fail to respond to trouble just to avoid war, because in the end you won't avoid it, you'll just be putting it off to your enemy's advantage. (3.16)

Machiavelli tells us elsewhere that fortune favors impulsive dudes. Cautious, peace-loving bros? Not her type.

Quote #3

But once you have won and routed the enemy and made sure he can't rebuild his armies, then the only thing to worry about is the king and his family. Eliminate them and no one else can threaten you since no one commands the loyalty of the people. (4.3)

With his simple and clear language, Machiavelli makes killing whole families seem as inconsequential as swatting a fly or Raid-ing an ant pile.

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