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

2. What did Machiavelli suggest is the advantage of settling in areas that were "sterile" (barren)?
(a) The isolation from more fertile areas allow for greater freedom.
(b) Barren areas stand at crossroads between fertile areas so they can control trade between prosperous cities.
(c) The poverty of resources would require those living there to have less cause for discord.
(d) Residents of sterile areas become more creative and develop technologies that can be sold to more fertile areas.

3. How does Machiavelli recommend a Republic deal with enemies that spring up within an empire?
(a) He recommends that efforts be made to temporize (compromise) them rather than crush them.
(b) He advocates smearing them with public proclamations about the threat they pose.
(c) He advises Princes to allow his supporters to conspire to assassinate the enemies.
(d) Princes should name appoint them to offices to leave their actions open to public scrutiny.

4. What are reasons Machiavelli cited for a group of people leaving their native country to seek a new home?
(a) Pestilence, famine or war.
(b) Overcrowding and social unrest.
(c) Family strife and lack of work.
(d) Racial conflict and economic injustice.

5. What can be inferred of Machiavelli's idea of virtue from reading the review of the first three kings of Rome as he begins his discourse of weak Princes and excellent Princes?
(a) The he considers moral integrity to be the primary virtue for Princes.
(b) That he believes being ferocious and warlike is an indispensible virtue for a Prince.
(c) That he considers the most weak Princes to practice ambivalence to virtue.
(d) That he considers bureaucratic expertise to be an important virtue for Princes.

Short Answer Questions

1. Based upon Machiavelli's details, for whose benefit were the "demonstrations made to the benefit" of Plebes devoted?

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

3. In Book 1, Section 46, Machiavelli credits the ruin of Republics on citizens who jump from one ambition to another. What was the phrase that Sallust put in the mouth of Caesar that explains how such ambitions begin?

4. Why does Machiavelli suggest that a Prince keep his conquered territories disunited from the City over which he has his power?

5. What did Machiavelli identify as the cause of conspiracy against a hereditary Princes?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. From what did Niccolo Machiavelli make the present that he sent to Zanobi Buondelmonti and Cosimo Rucellai?

3. Why does Machiavelli report that the Roman Senate decided to pay a public stipend to the soldiers in the army?

4. Why does Machiavelli believe that people who break away from the rule of a Prince have difficulty keeping their freedom?

5. What are the two reasons that Machiavelli gives for his opinion that the courts (Faculty of Accusing) are the most necessary and useful authority to guard liberty in a City?

6. What does Machiavelli mean when he uses the term "virtu" for a Prince?

7. What two methods did Machiavelli identify that Roman Nobility drew honor from the Plebes?

8. What kind of Prince does Machiavelli consider to be Excellent?

9. How does Machiavelli explain that a City grows either through love or through force?

10. Why did Machiavelli praise the Plebes for refusing to choose their peers for Tribunes for which the Nobility allowed Plebes candidacy?

(see the answer keys)

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