The Discourses Test | Mid-Book Test - Easy

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This test consists of 15 multiple choice questions and 5 short answer questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What does Machiavelli identify as an important action for Nobles to take to control the ambitions of Citizens seeking position?
(a) Find ways to have them sent to war.
(b) Forestall their paths to attain the rank they seek.
(c) Find ways to bring the ambitious Citizens into Noble circles to keep them under watch and compromise their influence.
(d) Have them kidnapped and killed.

2. What does Machiavelli consider to be the means of someone rising from the bottom to gain a great fortune?
(a) Force and fraud.
(b) Diligence and humility.
(c) Deceit and self preservation.
(d) Hard work and creativity.

3. What does Machiavelli identify as the easiest way to "...ruin a Republic where the People have authority...."
(a) Involve them in a brave enterprise.
(b) For the Nobles to promote corrupted Citizens in elections.
(c) Cause them to distribute wealth.
(d) For Nobles to cultivate rivalries between partisans among the People.

4. How did Machiavelli begin the preface to "The Discourses"?
(a) As a letter to two political thinkers from Florence.
(b) As a cynical commentary to the weakness of leaders of his time.
(c) With advice to two friends on how to keep their friends close and their enemies closer.
(d) As a warning to future generations of the tenuous nature of freedom.

5. Considering Machiavelli's praise for the example of how Nobles manipulated the opportunity for Plebes to select their peers for positions of influence, who is the clear intended audience of "The Discourses"?
(a) Plebes who need to know the tactics of Nobles to control them.
(b) Future candidates for election who need to know how to win.
(c) Those who are concerned with how the Republic is being manipulated by people with power.
(d) Nobles seeking methods to keep their power.

6. What does Machiavelli examine in Chapter 1 of Book 2?
(a) Why fortune is more important that virtue.
(b) Whether the Roman Empire was built upon fortune or virtue.
(c) How to develop fortune and virtue.
(d) How virtue can destroy fortune.

7. According to Machiavelli, how did the Agrarian Laws violate the foundation of well-ordered Republics?
(a) Agrarian laws allowed Nobles to take land from Plebes with the intent to increase the land's productivity.
(b) Agrarian laws allowed land owners to use their land to help the poor become wealthy.
(c) Agrarian laws allowed the government to decide what was to be grown on land in spite of the expertise of the land owner.
(d) Agrarian laws distributed land from those who had more than the law allowed among plebes rather than among Nobles with which they could enrich themselves.

8. What was a rival Empire to Rome as Rome began its expansion?
(a) The Egyptians.
(b) The Carthaginians.
(c) The Spartans.
(d) The Babylonians.

9. According to Machiavelli, what is the first thing that Citizens seek when starting on the path of chasing their ambitions?
(a) Means to win access to public office.
(b) The support of a wealthy Noble.
(c) A cause that will incite the passions of the general masses.
(d) Not to be harmed by citizens or magistrates.

10. Why does Machiavelli suggest wars should be quick with limited damage to the conquered City?
(a) To reduce the cost to the conquering Prince and preserve the resources of the conquered city as booty for the conquering forces.
(b) So Citizens are not burdened by the demands of the war.
(c) So armies can be readied for the next war.
(d) So armies can be brought home to participate in a productive economy.

11. What did Machiavelli report led gatherings of people to make laws?
(a) To protect economic activity that benefited the city.
(b) To set order to the defense of the city.
(c) So resources could be justly distributed.
(d) To avoid evils that people committed on others.

12. What does Machiavelli believe inspired the expansion of the Roman Empire?
(a) Keeping Citizens in poverty.
(b) Aggression and murder.
(c) Harsh Captains guiding the military.
(d) Virtue.

13. What were the reasons that Machiavelli cited for the Roman Senate choosing to pay a public stipend to fighting men (soldiers)?
(a) To increase the number of soldiers in the army.
(b) To hide the increased taxes that were used to build houses for Nobles.
(c) To keep the citizens in poverty so they would support wars.
(d) Because without the stipend, wars could not be made for any length of time, neither could Rome besiege towns nor lead armies to a distance.

14. What was the inspiration for Machiavelli's "The Discourses"?
(a) Machiavelli's fascination for power.
(b) Livy's account of the history of Rome written around 25 B.C.
(c) Machiavelli's interest in forms of government.
(d) Machiavelli's desire to guide politicians to serve the public needs.

15. What did Machiavelli identify as the cause of conspiracy against a hereditary Princes?
(a) The general population became dissatisfied with the distribution of wealth.
(b) Less powerful people desired the power of the Prince.
(c) They degenerated from their fathers, and surpassed others in sumptuousness and lasciviousness and in every other kind of delight.
(d) The larger population of citizens became unhappy with the the political preferences of the Princes.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is Machiavelli's conclusion regarding how someone can establish a Republic where there is great equality?

2. According to Machiavelli, what caused the Roman Republic to form?

3. In Book 1, Section 37, what does Machiavelli claim to be the foundation of well-ordered Republics?

4. What historical records did Machiavelli use to support his point for keeping two important items out of peril?

5. According to Machiavelli in Section 1 of Book One, who are the two types of people who build cities?

(see the answer keys)

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