What does Machiavelli say about armies?

What does Machiavelli say about armies?

There cannot be good laws without good armies, and where there are good laws, there must be good arms, so Machiavelli declares he will only discuss arms, not laws. Arms to defend the state are the prince’s own, mercenaries, auxiliaries, or a mix of the three. Mercenaries and auxiliaries are dangerous and unreliable.

How does Machiavelli describe mercenary armies?

Mercenaries are “disunited, undisciplined, ambitious, and faithless.” Because their only motivation is monetary, they are generally not effective in battle and have low morale.

Why should a prince maintain a strong army?

Machiavelli argues that in order to maintain control over a newly-acquired dominion, a prince must acquire control over the military forces. The prince may disband the existing army, and may create a new army under his own control. The prince may then use the army to prevent any possible threats to his sovereignty.

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What did Machiavelli think of mercenaries?

Mercenaries and auxiliaries are useless and dangerous; and if one holds his state based on these arms, he will stand neither firm nor safe; for they are disunited, ambitious and without discipline, unfaithful, valiant before friends, cowardly before enemies; they have neither the fear of God nor fidelity to men, and [ …

What are good arms Machiavelli?

Machiavelli asserts that the “main foundations” of every state are “good laws and good arms,” meaning that a ruler must anchor his state to sound legal and military codes if he wishes to maintain his power.

What are the main forces at work in the world according to Machiavelli in The Prince?


  • Statesmanship & Warcraft. Machiavelli believes that good laws follow naturally from a good military.
  • Goodwill & Hatred. To remain in power, a prince must avoid the hatred of his people.
  • Free Will.
  • Virtue.
  • Human Nature.

Why does Machiavelli say it better to be feared?

Forced to make a choice, it is much better to be feared than loved. This is because men, by nature, are “ungrateful, fickle, dissembling, anxious to flee danger, and covetous of gain.” In times of remote danger, they are willing to take risks for their prince, but if the danger is real, they turn against their prince.

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What does Machiavelli want the prince?

Machiavelli advises that a prince should carefully calculate all the wicked deeds he needs to do to secure his power, and then execute them all in one stroke. In this way, his subjects will slowly forget his cruel deeds and the prince can better align himself with his subjects.

Was Machiavelli in the army?

Machiavelli was many things: a scholar and writer, a spin doctor for the government of his city-state of Florence, a civil servant and diplomat, and, later, a political prisoner denounced as a traitor. But, for all his achievements, Machiavelli himself was most proud of his time as a soldier.

What according to Machiavelli is ruined?

According to Machiavelli, ruin is the inevitable result of a prince’s continued dependence on mercenaries.

What did Machiavelli believe in?

Machiavelli believed that public and private morality had to be understood as two different things in order to rule well. As a result, a ruler must be concerned not only with reputation, but also must be positively willing to act unscrupulously at the right times.