Machiavelli’s The Prince
Assignment AP European History
Answer each question in complete sentences. Add page numbers to your answers to help you return to that section of the book during discussions.
A. For whom is the book The Prince written?
B. What is Machiavelli’s purpose in writing The Prince?
1. All governments of men and States have been ruled one of two ways. What are those 2 ways?
2. Define each and explain the difference between a Hereditary state and a New state?
3. Which is easier to govern? Hereditary states or New states? Explain why.
4. Why is a mixed Princedom so hard to maintain?
5. What are the 2 things a Prince must do to maintain a Newly acquired Mixed State.
6. “Men are either to be kindly treated or utterly crushed, since they can avenge lighter injuries, but not graver.” What does this quote mean?
7. “The Prince... ought to make himself the head and protector of his feebler neighbors and endeavor to weaken the stronger....” What does this mean?
8. What were Louis XII 5 blunders involving his campaign in the Italian States?
9. “Never suffer your designs be crossed to avoid war, since war is not to be avoided, but is only deferred to your disadvantage.” What does this mean?
10. Which is harder to obtain? Sole-Princeship (Dictatorship) or a Princedom with Barons (Absolute Monarchy) Why?
11. Which is harder to retain? Sole-Princeship (Dictatorship) or a Princedom with Barons (Absolute Monarchy) Why?
12. What are the 3 methods whereby a Princedom previously free should be governed/dealt with?
13. Do merit of a prince and fortune go hand in hand? Explain
14. Why do leaders of Change have such a difficult time?
15. Which is better? To attempt and carry out change by Force or by Treaty? Why?
16. Why is a Princedom acquired by Fortune easy to acquire, but hard to maintain?
17. What are the 4 things a new prince should do to maintain hold of his state?
18. What are the 2 ways a man can become prince aside from merit or fortune?
19. Explain the meaning of the following quote, “Injuries should be inflicted all at once, that their ill savour being less lasting may the less offend; Whereas, benefits should be conferred little by little that so they may be more relished”.
20. How can a prince who arises to power by wickedness survive and thrive?
21. What would make a noble elect of their own to a level of Prince?
22. Why would regular citizens elect one of their own to become Prince?
23. Which is easier to run and why? A princedom granted by nobles or one of citizens?
24. What is the most important question a Prince must answer as it pertains to his “Strength”.
25. If a Prince is not strong enough to conquer other territories, What should he do?
26. What is the biggest benefit of an Eccesiastical Princedom?
27. What were the 2 Rules ALL of the Italian states agreed upon prior to the invasion of Charles? Why?
28. What are the 2 foundations of all States?
29. What are the 2 major types of “Arms” a state can have?
30. What type of “Arms” is the best for a Prince to have in his state and why?
31. What is a Prince’s role in the military during battle?
32. How do Auxiliary arms differ from the previous 2 mentioned in Ch. 12?
33. What does the story of “David and Goliath” impart about arms and troops?
34. What was the French mistake made by Louis XI and why did this prove disastrous?
35. Why is a Princedom without a Pure National army always living in danger?
36. What is the only true care a Prince should have? Why?
37. How can a Prince be active during times of peace? Explain each.
38. Why is it dangerous for a Prince to be all Good or Not Good?
39. What is the ideal way for a Prince to demand payment and collect taxes?
40. Should a Prince behave the same with what is his and what he acquires through conquest? Explain.
41. How should a prince be thought of as it pertains to mercy and cruelty?
42. What lessons must a Prince learn as to being loved or feared?
43. Is it better for a Prince to be Loved or Feared?
44. What are the 2 ways to live? What is a disadvantage of each?
45. Is it best for a Prince to be a Lion of a Fox? Explain
46. Is it best for a Prince to BE good or just APPEAR to be good?
47. How should a Prince avoid being despised or hated?
48. What are the 2 dangers a Prince can be exposed to? What can he do about these?
49. What advantage does a Prince have in creating hostility against himself in part of his kingdom?
50. Is there a difference between someone fighting “For You/On your side” or “on your side against another enemy”?
51. If a fight breaks out between 2 other Princes, what should a Prince do? Why?
52. How are princes judged by the company that they keep?
53. What is the role of a Secretary/Servant of a Prince?
54. Who should a Prince listen to for advice?
55. When and why should a Prince listen to anyone for advice?
56. Why did the Italians of the early 16th century lose their lands?
57. What is the role of Free will in a Prince's Fate?
58. What is one of the most critical attributes a Prince must have in dealing with Fate/Fortune?
59. Who does Machiavelli say should lead the Italian revival?