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52 Books: #4 - The Prince by Niccolò Machiavelli

Book: The Prince

Author: Niccolò Machiavelli

Page count: 140

Date started: 24/01/18

Date finished: 26/01/18

The first of my sub-200 page books and I manage to finish it in two days. That bodes well!

The Prince is one of those pieces of work that people tell you is a must read. It's a 16th-century treatise on politics and ruling, published five years after Machiavelli's death.

Though quite like other "mirrors for princes" books, in that it aims to school a new ruler on how best to reign over his kingdom, Machiavelli's work is notable for being published in Italian, opposed to Latin.

It's considered by some to be the first work of political philosophy, and was certainly different from the prevailing attitudes of the day. Unfortunately, I can't say that I enjoyed it all that much.

The first third of the book, which concerns the types of cities that exist in the world and how best a prince may retain them, was almost unbearably dull. The following chapters, on the nature of men and politics, are far more intriguing. Perhaps I need to sit down with The Prince when I'm not so contrained by time.


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