The Machiavellian Moment: Florentine Political Thought and the Atlantic Republican Tradition

By J. G. A. Pocock | Go to book overview

CHAPTER VII
ROME AND VENICE
A) Machiavelli's Discorsi and Arte della Guerra

[I]

J. H. WHITFIELD has rightly warned students of Machiavelli against commencing their interpretation of his thought with Il Principe and confining it to the Principe and the Discorsi.1 The present study, which is indeed confined as regards Machiavelli to the two works named, may seem to ignore Whitfield's warning as it ignores much more in recent Machiavelli scholarship; but there is a reason for this. We are engaged in an attempt to isolate “the Machiavellian moment”: that is, to isolate the continuous process in the history of ideas which seems the most promising context in which to treat his contribution to that history; and the enterprise is selective, in the sense that it does not commit us to interpreting the totality of his thought or the totality of its development. “The Machiavellian moment” entails less a history of Machiavelli than a historical presentation of Machiavelli, and within the context that has so far been established, the Principe and Discorsi are selected—as Guicciardini's discorsi and Dialogo have been selected—because they may be used to present those aspects of his thought which tell us most about the context and about his role in it. The test of this method is its ability to narrate a process actually taking place in the history of ideas, and to show that Machiavelli and Guicciardini were, and are to be understood as, major actors in it; the aim is not to provide a complete intellectual biography—if such a thing can be written—of either man.

This inquiry, then, which has long been principally concerned with the politics of time, has assumed the further shape of an investigation of the concept of virtue. We have distinguished two meanings of the term, each of which has something to do with time and something to do with the Aristotelian concept of form. By the institutionalization of civic virtue, the republic or polis maintains its own stability in time and develops the human raw material composing it toward that politi-

____________________
1
J. H. Whitfield, Discourses on Machiavelli (above, ch. IV, n. 63), pp. 17, 43, 57–58, III, 141–42.

-183-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Machiavellian Moment: Florentine Political Thought and the Atlantic Republican Tradition
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 602

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    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.