The Discourses Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What were the "demonstrations made to the benefit" of Plebes that Machiavelli reported were taken by Roman Nobility in Book 1, Section 52?
(a) A regular schedule of holidays throughout the year that gave Plebes an opportunity to rest.
(b) Offerings to Plebes of land in newly captured territories.
(c) A reduction of taxes and the initiation of public works jobs for which Plebes would have the first opportunity for hiring.
(d) Allowing Plebes to contend for four Tribune positions and paying wages to soldiers.

2. What does Machiavelli suggest as the intention to make war?
(a) To keep Citizens focused on refining their virtue.
(b) To keep Citizens attached to the power of the Prince.
(c) To acquire and maintain the acquisition, so as to enrich themselves and not to impoverish the [conquered] country the home country.
(d) To prove the power of the Prince to the Citizens.

3. What does Machiavelli consider prudence in a Prince or a King?
(a) Keeping friends close and enemies closer.
(b) Knowing that the enemy of his enemy is his friend.
(c) In times of peace not neglecting the arrangements of war.
(d) Picking battles that are important enough to fight and small enough to win.

4. What support did Machiavelli use for his view of what he considers to be the worst example provided by leaders?
(a) A series of Caesars who named friends to be Captains.
(b) A recent denial of appeal by Girolamo Savonarola to five citizens sentenced to death after Savonarola wrote the law allowing appeals.
(c) Tribunes who called the army from foreign provinces and decommissioned its Captains.
(d) The lawlessness that overtook Carthage as its Princes suspended harsh sentences for crimes against the State.

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

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Machiavelli believe to the nature of men that causes them to either fight from ambition or from necessity?

2. What does "Crescit interea Roma Albae ruinis" mean?

3. Why does Machiavelli suggest wars should be quick with limited damage to the conquered City?

4. How did Machiavelli report that the Nobles controlled the process of Plebes having the opportunity to choose Plebes for four Tribunes?

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

Short Essay Questions

1. What are the reasons that Machiavelli gives for people who leave their home country for another out of necessity?

2. What acts by governing officials does Machiavelli consider "pernicious" or damaging to the authority of the government?

3. What does Machiavelli recommend to a Prince about reform of a city or a province that he has taken?

4. Why does Machiavelli recommend to leaders of a Republic to keep a shadow of the institutions that are being reformed?

5. What does Machiavelli claim proves the Romans' love for liberty?

6. Why should a Prince measure his forces and govern by his decisions based upon them before he enters a war?

7. In the title of Book 1, Section 8, what does Machiavelli mean with the phrase, "...so much so calumnies are pernicious...?"

8. What are the three types of state that Machiavelli detailed and by what name are they known today?

9. What kind of Prince does Machiavelli consider to be weak?

10. What examples from history does Machiavelli claim offers guidance to leaders?

(see the answer keys)

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