Machiavelli, Volume I eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 456 pages of information about Machiavelli, Volume I.
will not beare you companie.  And you ought above all thyng to have this advertismente, mindyng to make the Souldiour obstinate to faight, not to permitte, that thei maie send home any of their substaunce, or to leave it in any place, till the warre bee ended, that thei maie understande, that although fliyng save their life, yet it saveth not theim their goodes, the love whereof, is wonte no lesse then thesame, to make men obstinate in defence.

ZANOBI.  YOU have tolde, how the souldiours maie be tourned to faight, with speakyng to theim:  doe you meane by this, that all the armie must bee spoken unto, or to the heddes thereof?

[Sidenote:  It is requisite for excellent Capitaines to bee good orators; Alexander Magnus used openly to perswade his armie; The effecteousnes of speking; Souldiours ought to be accustomed to heare their Capitaine speake; How in olde time souldiers were threatened for their faltes; Enterprises maie the easelier be brought to passe by meanes of religion; Sertorius; A policie of Silla; A policie of Charles the seventh king of Fraunce against the Englishmen; How souldiers maiebee made to esteme little their enemies; The surest wai to make souldiours moste obstinat to faight; By what meanes obstinatenesse to faighte is increased.]

FABRICIO.  TO perswade, or to diswade a thyng unto fewe, is verie easie, for that if woordes suffise not, you maie then use aucthoritie and force:  but the difficultie is, to remove from a multitude an evill opinion, and that whiche is contrary either to the common profite, or to thy opinion, where cannot be used but woordes, the whiche is meete that thei be heard of every man, mindyng to perswade them all.  Wherfore, it was requisite that the excellente Capitaines were oratours:  for that without knowyng how to speake to al the army, with difficultie maie be wrought any good thing:  the whiche altogether in this our tyme is laied aside.  Rede the life of Alexander Magnus, and you shall see how many tymes it was necessarie for hym to perswade, and to speake publikly to his armie:  otherwise he should never have brought theim, beyng become riche, and full of spoile, through the desertes of Arabia, and into India with so moche his disease, and trouble:  for that infinite tymes there growe thynges, wherby an armie ruinateth, when the capitain either knoweth not, or useth not to speake unto thesame, for that this speakyng taketh awaie feare, in courageth the mindes, increaseth the obstinatenes to faight, discovereth the deceiptes, promiseth rewardes, sheweth the perilles, and the waie to avoide theim, reprehendeth, praieth, threatened, filleth full of hope, praise, shame, and doeth a11 those thynges, by the whiche the humaine passions are extincte or kendled:  wherefore, that prince, or common weale, whiche should appoincte to make a newe power, and cause reputacion to their armie, ought to accustome the Souldiours thereof, to heare the capitain to speake, and the capitain to know how to speake unto them. 

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Machiavelli, Volume I from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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