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 recommend to a City that is unable to defend itself, but wants to be protected from anyone who would attack it?
(a) Make alliances with powerful Cities.
(b) Train its citizens to form a strong army.
(c) Hire mercenaries.
(d) To give itself freely to whomever would defend the city.

2. What are two reasons Machiavelli gives for foreign forces building a city?
(a) To exercise power over enemies and expand the power of an established system.
(b) To relieve existing towns of excessive inhabitants and for the defense of the country from which the forces come.
(c) To spread the culture of the homeland and use resources for financial development.
(d) To offer people in other lands the benefits of the existing system and to make their abilities and resources for universally beneficial.

3. To what does Machiavelli compare great kingdoms and republics from history?
(a) To his ideal state that combined the most successful institutions from those civilizations.
(b) To great works of antique art that have been found and preserved.
(c) To his projections of the future in which Machiavelli speculated on how power would be preserved.
(d) To the state of political instability in which was common to Machiavelli's day.

4. According to Machiavelli, what caused so much hard work for Rome as it expanded its Empire to distant provinces?
(a) The damage to families who sent their working sons to war.
(b) The love of people of other lands for liberty.
(c) The cost of sending the military to distant provinces.
(d) The demands on farmers to provide the food for soldiers on long trips.

5. What did Machiavelli establish as the cycle of governing forms?
(a) Aristocracy to republic to oligarchy to monarchy to aristocracy.
(b) Democracy to republic go aristocracy to oligarchy to anarchy to democracy.
(c) Anarchy to democracy to oligarchy to monarchy to anarchy.
(d) Monarchy (principality) to aristocracy to oligarchy to democracy to monarchy.

6. What can be inferred of Machiavelli's view of freedom based upon reading view of weak and strong Princes?
(a) That Machiavelli considered civil rights and individual liberties indispensable to the strength of a city.
(b) That Machiavelli uses the term freedom in reference to the actions of Princes only.
(c) That Machiavelli considers freedom only suited to those who can earn it or buy it.
(d) That Machiavelli is focused on keeping cities free from outside influences rather than individual freedom.

7. Why does Machiavelli suggest that those who have received great rewards should not be spared punishments for acting badly?
(a) Because doing so gives the Prince the opportunity to prove his harshness.
(b) Because doing so helps the Republic remain free for a long time.
(c) Because doing so helps to find the most ardent supporters of the Prince.
(d) Because doing so keeps the most famous citizens obedient to the Prince.

8. What does Machiavelli identify as tactics the Citizen seeking not to be harmed uses?
(a) Obscurity.
(b) Acquiring friendships either through honest means or by supplying money to protect themselves from the powerful (bribes).
(c) The financial ability to buy protection.
(d) Friendships with Citizens who are bold enough to fight.

9. What does Machiavelli predict will come to Republics that do not provide for dictatorships or powerful authorities in times of urgent perils?
(a) The gathering of officials will paralyze the Republic in debate.
(b) They will always be ruined in grave incidents.
(c) The trust leaders show in the people will inspire them to overcome the peril.
(d) A Republican government will always move in the benefit of everyone dependent on them.

10. If a cliché could be given to the preface to Book Two of "The Discourses", what would it be?
(a) "History is written by the winners."
(b) "Go where you belong--on the ash heap of history."
(c) "Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it."
(d) ."The only thing we learn from history is that we do not learn from history."

11. What does Machiavelli establish as the relationship between gold and good soldiers?
(a) Gold will cause good soldiers to go bad.
(b) Gold is not sufficient to find good soldiers, but good soldiers are indeed sufficient to find gold.
(c) The promise of gold will make soldiers weaker.
(d) Gold attracts good soldiers.

12. What, according to Machiavelli in Book , 1 Section 38, is the fate of irresolute Republics?
(a) They have no alternative but to join alliances with powerful Republics that will take control of them.
(b) They face invasion, destruction and anhilation.
(c) They will eventually fade away and reemerge as a tyranny.
(d) They cannot settle conflicts except with force because their weakness prevents them from resolving doubts over issues.

13. Why does Machiavelli suggest that a Prince keep his conquered territories disunited from the City over which he has his power?
(a) So his City is not affected by immigration.
(b) So the conquered territories cannot unite with his existing Citizens to overthrow him.
(c) So that the Prince alone can profit from the acquisition.
(d) So the merchants can benefit from the trade between the City and the conquered territory.

14. What were the reasons that Machiavelli cited for the Roman Senate choosing to pay a public stipend to fighting men (soldiers)?
(a) 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.
(b) To increase the number of soldiers in the army.
(c) To hide the increased taxes that were used to build houses for Nobles.
(d) To keep the citizens in poverty so they would support wars.

15. In defending his view that Roman Dictators served their city well, what phrase does Machiavelli use to explain how the Caesars absorbed their power?
(a) "It is power that easily acquires a name, not a name power."
(b) "Justice and power must be brought together, so that whatever is just may be powerful, and whatever is powerful may be just."
(c) "Power corrupts. Knowledge is power. Study hard. Be evil."
(d) "He who controls others may be powerful, but he who has mastered himself is mightier still."

Short Answer Questions

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

2. What does Machiavelli consider to be the worst example to be provided by leaders in a Republic?

3. What does Machiavelli identify as an important action for Nobles to take to control the ambitions of Citizens seeking position?

4. Why does Machiavelli recommend that those who want to reform a city should retain the appearance of the institutions they want to reform?

5. What does Machiavelli claim new sects (religions) do as they rise to prominence?

(see the answer keys)

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