Machiavelli, Volume I eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 456 pages of information about Machiavelli, Volume I.

FABRICIO.  Let not this disquiete you, for that all this reasonyng was necessary, myndyng to reason of the ordinaunce, the which beyng blamed of many, it was requsite to excuse it, willyng to have this first parte of chusyng men to be alowed.  But now before I discend to the other partes, I will reason of the choise of men on horsebacke.  Of the antiquitie, these were made of the moste richeste, havyng regard bothe to the yeres, and to the qualitie of the man, and thei chose CCC. for a Legion, so that the Romain horse, in every Consulles armie, passed not the nomber of vi.  C.

COSIMO.  Would you make an ordinaunce of hors, to exercise them at home, and to use their service when nede requires?

[Sidenote:  The choosing and ordering of horsemen, that is to be observed at this present.]

FABRICIO.  It is most necessary, and it cannot be doen otherwise, minding to have the power, that it be the owne proper, and not to purpose to take of those, which make thereof an art.

COSIMO.  How would you choose them?

FABRICIO.  I would imitate the Romans, I would take of the richest, I would give them heads or chief Captains, in the same manner, as nowadays to other is given, and I would arm them and exercise them.

COSIMO.  To these should it be well to give some provision?

FABRICIO.  Yea marie, but so much only as is necessary to keep the horse, for as much as bringing to thy subjects expenses, they might justly complain of thee, therefore it should be necessary, to pay them their charges of their horse.

COSIMO.  What number would you make? and how would you arme them?

FABRICIO.  You pass into another matter.  I will tell you in convenient place, which shall be when I have told you, how footmen ought to be armed, and how a power of men is prepared, for a day of battle.


[Sidenote:  Howe the Romaines armed their souldiers and what weapons thei used.]

I beleeve that it is necessarye, men being founde, to arme them, and minding to doo this, I suppose that it is a needefull thing to examine, what armoure the antiquitie used, and of the same to chose the best.  The Romanes devided their foote men in heavie and lighte armed:  Those that were light armed, they called by the name of Veliti:  Under this name were understoode all those that threwe with Slinges, shot with Crossebowes, cast Dartes, and they used the most parte of them for their defence, to weare on their heade a Murion, with a Targaet on their arme:  they fought out of the orders, and farre of from the heavie armed, which did weare a head peece, that came downe to their shoulders, a Corselet, which with the tases came downe to the knees, and they had the legges and armes, covered with greaves, and vambraces, with a targaet on the left arme, a yarde and a halfe long, and three quarters of a yarde brode, whiche had a

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Machiavelli, Volume I from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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