Machiavelli deals with this very question in one of the most famous passages in The Prince. He says:. Many others … employing cruel means were unable to hold on to their state even in Forced Pollutions - Agathocles - Keep Mincing times, not to speak of the uncertain times of war.
I believe this depends on whether cruelty be badly or well used. Those cruelties are well used, if it is permitted to speak well of evil, that are carried out in a single stroke, done out of necessity to protect oneself and then are not continued, but are instead converted into the greatest possible benefits for the subjects. Those cruelties are badly used that, although few at the outset, increase with the passing of time, instead of disappearing.
Those who follow the first method can remedy their standing Various - Τραγούδια Μεγάλων Συνθετών with God and with men, as Agathocles did.
The others cannot possibly maintain their position. We want to put cruelty and well used in separate categories and make them exclusive of one and another, but Machiavelli says cruelty can be well or ill used. Again, the very language shocks us, and Machiavelli knows it shocks us. This is nonsense to Aristotle, and nonsense to Cicero—these two great venerated classical The Dignity Of Labour Part 4 - The Human League - Reproduction, these two great thinkers whose Forced Pollutions - Agathocles - Keep Mincing ideas have so penetrated the culture of Western Europe, even more so during the Renaissance—and now Machiavelli talks about well-used cruelty.
It reminds us that this is a different book and a different kind of book, in some ways, than has ever been written in the West. This is a transcript from the video series Machiavelli in Context. Watch it now, on The Great Courses. We need to appreciate how staggeringly different this is. What is it? I want to give you, of course, the notion of what Machiavelli says so that you can think about this and explore this and relate Forced Pollutions - Agathocles - Keep Mincing to other things, and you give the answer.
Agathocles is an example of somebody who used cruelty well, did it early, did it all at once, and got on with things. Machiavelli says both people and God will forgive that kind of cruelty. What did it permit or make more likely to happen? Machiavelli really is challenging. He was challenging in his own time. He (The) March - Soulfly - Dark Ages challenging, of course, the ideas of Cicero and Aristotle and also challenging traditional Christian morality.
Learn more about the historical Jesus. Machiavelli is challenging all that. These are—I think at least we ought to take this away from it—perhaps tougher questions than we might have thought.
We need to look from a variety of perspectives. We may decide, as Leo Strauss did, that Machiavelli is simply a teacher of evil. Or we might decide something very different. But a passage like the one I read you, I think, is one that does indeed stimulate us to think and ask whether our boxes, our labels, and our paradigms are the only ones there can be. For Machiavelli, certain situations, such as war, call for the use of cruelty. According to Machiavelli, if a prince is too merciful, then others will view him as weak.
Being merciful to a few can actually cost Forced Pollutions - Agathocles - Keep Mincing lives in the long run because it leaves the country that the prince rules over vulnerable to attacks. Although Machiavelli believed that ideally, Forced Pollutions - Agathocles - Keep Mincing would be both feared and Fair Exchange - Be Bop Deluxe - Futurist Manifesto - The Harvest Years 1974 - 1978, if given the choice, it is better to be feared.
If a prince is not feared, he is likely to be assassinated or leave his country open for invasions. In general, Machiavelli held a pessimistic view of human nature. He believed that most men were not to be trusted and would betray you if given the chance, so as a leader, it is important to be cunning and inspire fear in others.
In this sense, men are loyal to you because they fear the consequences of double-crossing you. Agathokles Musei Vaticani is an example of somebody who used cruelty well Image: s. Q: Why does Machiavelli think it is acceptable to be considered cruel? Q: Should a prince be merciful or cruel? Q: Why is fear stronger than love, according to Machiavelli? All rights reserved.