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DOWNLOAD Machiavelli: His Life and Times õ PDF, eBook or Kindle ePUB ´ Thanks to the invidious reputation of his most famous work The Prince Niccolò Machiavelli exerts a uniue hold over the popular imagination But was Machiavelli as sinister as he is often thought to be Might he not have been an infinitely sympaCradle to grave from his father’s penury and the abuse he suffered at a teacher’s hands to his marriage and his many affairs with both men and women to his political triumphs and ultimately his fall from grace and exile In doing so Lee uncovers hitherto unobserved connections between Machiavelli’s life and thought He also reveals the world through which Machiavelli moved from the gr. Niccolò di Bernardo dei Machiavelli was a remarkable diplomat and man of letters he wrote poetry and analyses of political and military situations with recommendations for solutionHis underlying assumption about human nature is reproduced from Il principe in this book on p 428 that at heart all men are evil and that they are always going to act according to the wickedness of their spirits whenever they have free scope They would cut their neighbors' throats if they would profit from it and would remember the loss of their property than the loss of family members This may not have been unrealistic at the time of the Italian Wars when this politicalpower schema of Niccolò is applied to describing a country divided by warring classes warring princes and monarchies and loyalty of mercenaries and troops dependent on receiving their wages Towns could be bought and sold by rivalous armies A world of broken agreements deceipt and tricksIt is useful to place ourselves in this schema of Niccolò's Critiue of this schema was most recently emphasized by the late Sumantra Ghoshal who in 2005 wrote that by propagating ideologically inspired amoral theories business schools have actively freed their students from any sense of moral responsibility Liberalism is but ideology essentially grounded in a set of pessimistic assumptions about both individuals and institutions a “gloomy vision” as Hirschman wrote in World Politics in 1970 that views the primary purpose of social theory as one of solving the “negative problem” of restricting the social costs arising from human imperfections Hence Niccolò's proposals for constitutional reform and organization of the polity reflect achieving balance among warring classes the primi the mezzani and the rest of the citizensIt is helpful and useful to see the world from this perspective but as Sumantra Ghoshal so brilliantly argued it can become a self fulfilling prophecyI have given this book 5 out of respect for the immense and surely lifetime commitment of the author to research into Renaissance and Niccolò including reference to the many original documents that exist I was struck by the sophistication of thinking 500 years' ago about the need for and search for good governance Niccolò was a good scholar He was well read in the classics Aristotle contrasted with Cicero and skilled in using the comparative method in his contrasting the governance of Rome and Florence Whenever you are so deeply involved in a subject as Dr Alexander Lee is there is a tendency to write in a way that could be improved if thinking of the target audience This book is written with the customary embellishments of historical accounts that endeavor to soften history for a wider audience such as how Niccolò ignored the driving rain the saddle sores and the stomach pains brought on by the jerking of his horse p 555 Yet what is needed than this is a Glossary or summary of the key characters and forces that is descriptive than the maps and genealogical charts of the Medici and Machiavelli provided at the front of the book I freuently found myself searching for names on Wikpedia to learn about characters sparsely or not introduced and to obtain a broader understanding of the political forces at work in the Italian Wars So I wanted a reference a uick guide to the principal characters and their histories There are so many characters treaties and wars that the reader without the historical background may get lostAs biography I was searching also for an underlying message of the book Just as Niccolò had a schema I was unclear of the schema of Alexander Lee For the first 200 pages I recalled learning history at school studying kings ueens births deaths dates with little theory What is the theoretical perspective of Alexander Lee He has one but it could be clearer and used to create a greater consistency in writingI learned

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Thanks to the invidious reputation of his most famous work The Prince Niccolò Machiavelli exerts a uniue hold over the popular imagination But was Machiavelli as sinister as he is often thought to be Might he not have been an infinitely sympathetic figure prone to political missteps professional failures and personal dramasAlexander Lee reveals the man behind the myth following him from. My copy of “Machiavelli His Life and Times” by Alexander Lee arrived at the start of July I put it aside as I had other reading commitments but I was constantly being drawn to the book like it was screaming at me to read it Finally I buckled to the pressure and started reading it and then it had me I couldn’t put the book downThe hardback edition is 762 pages in length 570 pages of narrative; the rest is Bibliography Notes and Index There are two maps covering Italy and Tuscany a family tree for Machiavelli and the Medici along with two sections of colour plates 35 pictures in totalI must confess that this has been the first dedicated biography of Machiavelli that I have read Of course I have come across him in my reading of Italy and the Renaissance but this is the first book on the man that I have picked up Although I have no other titles on the subject to make a comparison I can honestly say that this was a delightful interesting engaging and thoughtful account of the man and just as importantly his times And those times could be uite bitter and very dangerousFreed from Cesare's malign influence Florence could turn its attention to Pistoia again Despite the commissioner's best efforts the city's factional divisions remained as bitter as ever The Cancellieri were still doggedly clinging on to the organs of communal government and bands of exiled Panciatichi continued to roam the countryside spoiling for a fight On 4 July hostilities broke out again A pitched battle took place in which as many as 200 men mostly foreign mercenaries were killed The following day there was another skirmish Although fewer lives were lost the exchange was no less gruesome According to Landucci the heads of a dozen men were stuck on lances and paraded around Pistoia They were then taken down and used a footballs I thoroughly loved the journey I took in this book following Machiavelli from cradle to grave The author skilfully allows us to follow Machiavelli in his travels as he interacts and deals with some of the great people in this period of Italian history We met various members of the Medici family so important in Florentine history at this time We also come across members of the Borgia Sforza Visconti Este Colonna Orsini and Farnese families We deal with the various Popes Kings Princes and Emperors not to mention numerous Condottieri and other people some famous some not so famous but all very interesting For example the author mentions the arrival of a new French commander in the Italian theatreSome measure of hope was restored by the new French commander Gaston de Foix Though only twenty two years old when Louis XII appointed him governor of Milan he was already a seasoned campaigner and uickly proved to be one of the outstanding military leaders of his generation Tearing through Lombardy and the Romagna in the depths of winter he repelled a Swiss attack on Milan prevented Bologna from being Besieged by the Spanish and massacred a Venetian army that had taken control of Brescia On 11 April 1512 he then inflicted a crushing defeat on Ramon de Cardona at the Battle of Ravenna albeit at the cost of his own life Several of the League's best captains including Fabrizio Colonna were taken prisoner along with Cardinal Giovanni de' Medici and the while of Emilia Romagna was captured for FranceWe get to read about the various treatise plays comedies and poems that Machiavelli wrote including his greatest work; Istorie Fiorentine the Florentine Histories Who knew that he was so prolific and that he wrote than just Discourses on Livy and The Prince He had a great sense of humour and although he was always on the lookout for advancement he also didn't take himself too seriously he knew he was living in precarious times and he meant to enjoy himself while he could This is how the great man finished his lifeOn 21 June he awoke suddenly from a fitf

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Machiavelli His Life and TimesEat halls of Renaissance Florence to the court of the Borgia pope Alexander VI from the dungeons of the Stinche prison to the Rucellai gardens where he would begin work on some of his last great worksAs much a portrait of an age as of a uniuely engaging man Lee’s gripping and definitive biography takes the reader into Machiavelli’s world – and his work – completely than ever befor. NotesJuly 2020 Added to TBR after reading review of GR friend Aussie Rick