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Niccolo Machiavelli: An Intellectual Biography

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Niccolo Machiavelli: An Intellectual Biography Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

This is a colorful, comprehensive, and authoritative introduction to the life and work of the author of The Prince--Florentine statesman, writer, and political philosopher Niccolò Machiavelli (1469-1527). Corrado Vivanti, who was one of the world's leading Machiavelli scholars, provides an unparalleled intellectual biography that demonstrates the close connections between Machiavelli's thought and his changing fortunes during the tumultuous Florentine republic and his subsequent exile. Vivanti's concise account covers not only Machiavelli's most famous works--The Prince, The Discourses, The Florentine Histories, and The Art of War--but also his letters, poetry, and comic dramas. While setting Machiavelli's life against a dramatic backdrop of war, crisis, and diplomatic intrigue, the book also paints a vivid human portrait of the man.

Vivanti's narrative breaks Machiavelli's life into three parts: his career in a variety of government and diplomatic posts in the Florentine republic between 1494 and 1512, when the Medici returned from exile, seized power, and removed Machiavelli from office; the pivotal first part of his subsequent exile, when he formulated his most influential ideas and wrote The Prince; and the final decade of his life, when, having returned to Florence, he wrote The Art of War, The Florentine Histories, the satirical play The Mandrake, and other works. Along the way, the biography presents unmatched accounts of many intensely debated topics, including the precise nature of Machiavelli's cultural and intellectual background, his republicanism, his political and personal relationship to the Medici, and his ideas about religion.

Synopsis:

"I cannot imagine a work on Machiavelli that would benefit readers more than this extremely valuable book. Vivanti, who was one of the most eminent Machiavelli scholars, provides a fine introduction to Machiavelli's life and thought, writing with a clarity and precision that only a lifetime of study made possible. But this is far more than an introduction. Its treatment of Machiavelli's republicanism is probably the finest that exists, and its discussion of many other important topics--from Machiavelli's relationship to the Medici to his cultural background and his ideas on religion--are equally persuasive."--Maurizio Viroli, author of Niccolò's Smile: A Biography of Machiavelli

"This is a very readable and reliable guide to Machiavelli's life and thought from a distinguished editor of the Florentine's works. Providing far more comprehensive coverage than any other short guide, This book presents an informative account of all of Machiavelli's writings, and handles them with winning suppleness and authority. Vivanti reveals the intimate connections between Machiavelli's thought and the vicissitudes of his career within a colorful and turbulent political world characterized by incessant war, duplicitous statecraft, and delicate diplomacy."--Peter Stacey, University of California, Los Angeles

About the Author

Corrado Vivanti (1928-2012) was an emeritus professor of history, having taught at the universities of Rome, Turin, and Perugia. He was the editor of the standard edition of the complete works of Machiavelli.

Table of Contents

Preface vii

Part I. The Florentine Secretary 1
1. A Shadowy Period: The First Half of His Life 3
2. The Relationship with Savonarola 7
3. The Activity in the Chancery 11
4. The Correspondence with Functionaries of the Domain 19
5. Diplomatic Activity 24
6. The Experience of the Early Missions 28
7. Changes of Fortune and the Ghiribizzi al Soderino 36
8. The Florentine Ordinance 41
9. The Venetian Defeat and the Reconquest of Pisa 51
10. The End of the Republic and the Return of the Medici 58

Part II. Exile in His Homeland 69
11. The Confinement at Sant'Andrea 71
12. "I have composed a little work On Princedoms" 76
13. The "Myth" of The Prince 85
14. Frequenting the Orti Oricellari 103
15. An Original Comment on Livy 108
16. The Art of War 122

Part III. "Niccolò Machiavelli, Historian, comic writer, and tragic writer" 127
17. A New Season in Machiavelli's Life 129
18. A Return to Business 135
19. "The annals or the history of Florence" 143
20. "The things done at home and abroad by the Florentine people" 149
21. The Friendship with Guicciardini 168
22. Clizia and the Musical Madrigals 176
23. Final Act 180

Appendix: Notes on the Use of the Word Stato in Machiavelli 193
Notes 219
Index 255

Product Details

ISBN:
9780691151014
Author:
Vivanti, Corrado
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Author:
MacMichael, Simon
Subject:
History & Theory
Subject:
European History
Subject:
Political philosophy
Subject:
Biography-Historical
Copyright:
Publication Date:
20130505
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Pages:
280
Dimensions:
8.5 x 5.5 in

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Related Subjects

Biography » Historical
Biography » Philosophers
Biography » Political
History and Social Science » Europe » Italy » General
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » World History » Italy
Reference » Science Reference » General
Science and Mathematics » Mathematics » General
Science and Mathematics » Mathematics » Geometry » Geometry and Trigonometry

Niccolo Machiavelli: An Intellectual Biography New Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$27.95 In Stock
Product details 280 pages Princeton University Press - English 9780691151014 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , "I cannot imagine a work on Machiavelli that would benefit readers more than this extremely valuable book. Vivanti, who was one of the most eminent Machiavelli scholars, provides a fine introduction to Machiavelli's life and thought, writing with a clarity and precision that only a lifetime of study made possible. But this is far more than an introduction. Its treatment of Machiavelli's republicanism is probably the finest that exists, and its discussion of many other important topics--from Machiavelli's relationship to the Medici to his cultural background and his ideas on religion--are equally persuasive."--Maurizio Viroli, author of Niccolò's Smile: A Biography of Machiavelli

"This is a very readable and reliable guide to Machiavelli's life and thought from a distinguished editor of the Florentine's works. Providing far more comprehensive coverage than any other short guide, This book presents an informative account of all of Machiavelli's writings, and handles them with winning suppleness and authority. Vivanti reveals the intimate connections between Machiavelli's thought and the vicissitudes of his career within a colorful and turbulent political world characterized by incessant war, duplicitous statecraft, and delicate diplomacy."--Peter Stacey, University of California, Los Angeles

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