The Private Correspondence of Nicolo Machiavelli

The Private Correspondence of Nicolo Machiavelli

The Private Correspondence of Nicolo Machiavelli

The Private Correspondence of Nicolo Machiavelli

Excerpt

The investigation of the facts of the past is always a difficult task. As respects the phase of Machiavelli's life we are surveying, it is particularly so. The study of history, which for generations has been pursued on certain well-defined, if not entirely accurate, lines, has been in the last century undergoing a process of revision. Writers and critics are adopting new methods. For millenniums we have been studying history through the media of autobiography, of private letters, of memoirs, and other intimate documents, and one author has copied, sometimes servilely and uncritically, from the other, without any desire for investigation. History has been a literary not a scientific composition, coming not from eyewitnesses but from elegant and imaginative copyists, who have stressed the exploits of men more than the significance of social events. Herodotus, the pioneer of historians, gave us a description of his travels, tinctured throughout with Herodotus. Plutarch has bequeathed to us his "Lives," written with the object of bringing out the various characteristics of his heroes. Living in a village, he took his . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.