Machiavelli Discourse On Livy Analysis

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Machiavelli wrote his Discourses on Livy in 1517, as a response to the Roman historian Livy, in which he goes in depth about his take on republican ideals, including the guardianship of liberty, the effects of religion on the state, and the danger of conspiracies against the sovereign. He argues about who should be responsible for guarding the liberty of the republic, whether or not this power should reside with the people or the noble classes, using the political structure of ancient Rome and of Venice as evidence for his theories. In chapter 12, Machiavelli elaborates on the causes of the disunity of the Italian state, and why religion is responsible for this, being that the Church is both to weak to hold supreme hold over Italy and yet too …show more content…
Machiavelli was a historian and deeply involved himself in politics, and he wrote his Discourses on Livy with a desire to bring back the virtues of the ancient Roman republic and in the hopes that they could be applied to Italy in the 16th century. The Discourses is a more honest take on Machiavelli’s true political beliefs than what is outlined in his famous, and much more widely read, The Prince. At the time of writing it, the Medici family were in full power, and Rousseau stated after reading his book, “Machiavelli was a proper man and a good citizen; but, being attached to the court of the Medici, he could not help veiling his love of liberty in the midst of his country's oppression.” Which would explain the contrasting ideals brought forth between The Prince and his Discourses. This was written for those ruling Italy …show more content…
He outlines what he thinks is the proper political and religious structure for a state, and calls for a return to the classics, which is appropriate during the Renaissance, a time when a return to the classics was valued by all nobility, and Machiavelli points out the flaws apparent within the political system in Italy, especially in Rome proper, asking for

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