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Niccolo Machiavelli Quotes

Please enjoy these encouraging quotes by Niccolo Machiavelli.

Men in general judge more from
appearances than from reality. All
men have eyes, but few have
the gift of penetration.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Related topics: Wisdom

Men ought either to be indulged or utterly destroyed,
for if you merely offend them, they take vengeance,
but if you injure them greatly, they are unable to retaliate,
so that the injury done to a man
ought to be such that vengeance cannot be feared.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Politics have no relation to morals.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

No enterprise is more likely to succeed than one concealed
from the enemy until it is ripe for execution.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

 

The wise man does at once what the fool does finally.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Never was anything great achieved without danger.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

I'm not interested in preserving the status quo;
I want to overthrow it.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

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It is much more secure to be feared than to be loved.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Before all else, be armed.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

One change always leaves the way open for the establishment of others.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

It is not titles that honor men, but men that honor titles.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

One who deceives will always find those who allow themselves to be deceived.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

He who wishes to be obeyed must know how to command.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Where the willingness is great, the difficulties cannot be great.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Hatred is gained as much by good works as by evil.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

A prince never lacks legitimate reasons to break his promise.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

There is no avoiding war; it can only be postponed
to the advantage of others.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Tardiness often robs us opportunity,
and the dispatch of our forces.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

It is better to be feared than loved,
if you cannot be both.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Whosoever desires constant success must change his conduct with the times.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Princes and governments are far more dangerous than
other elements within society.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Benefits should be conferred gradually;
and in that way they will taste better.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

If an injury has to be done to a man it should be so
severe that his vengeance need not be feared.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

There is no surer sign of decay in a country than to
see the rites of religion held in contempt.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

There is nothing more difficult to take in hand,
more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success,
than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

A return to first principles in a republic is sometimes
caused by the simple virtues of one man.
His good example has such an influence that the good
men strive to imitate him,
and the wicked are ashamed to lead a life so contrary to his example.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

War should be the only study of a prince.
He should consider peace only as a breathing-time,
which gives him leisure to contrive,
and furnishes as ability to execute,
military plans.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

The first method for estimating the intelligence of
a ruler is to look at the men he has around him.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Since it is difficult to join them together,
it is safer to be feared than to be loved when one
of the two must be lacking.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

For among other evils caused by being disarmed,
it renders you contemptible; which is one of those
disgraceful things which a prince must guard against.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Of mankind we may say in general they are fickle,
hypocritical, and greedy of gain.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Men shrink less from offending one who inspires love
than one who inspires fear.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

A son can bear with equanimity the loss of his father,
but the loss of his inheritance may drive him to despair.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Men are so simple and yield so readily to the desires
of the moment that he who will trick will always find
another who will suffer to be tricked.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

The promise given was a necessity of the past:
the word broken is a necessity of the present.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Entrepreneurs are simply those who understand that
there is little difference between obstacle and opportunity
and are able to turn both to their advantage.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

War is just when it is necessary; arms are permissible
when there is no hope except in arms.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

When you disarm the people, you commence to offend
them and show that you distrust them either through
cowardice or lack of confidence,
and both of these opinions generate hatred.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Severities should be dealt out all at once,
so that their suddenness may give less offense;
benefits ought to be handed ought drop by drop,
so that they may be relished the more.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

The fact is that a man who wants to act virtuously
in every way necessarily comes to grief among so many who are not virtuous.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

God is not willing to do everything,
and thus take away our free will and that share of
glory which belongs to us.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

The wish to acquire more is admittedly a very natural and common thing;
and when men succeed in this they are always praised rather than condemned.
But when they lack the ability to do so and yet want
to acquire more at all costs,
they deserve condemnation for their mistakes.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

The main foundations of every state,
new states as well as ancient or composite ones,
are good laws and good arms you cannot have good laws without good arms,
and where there are good arms, good laws inevitably follow.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

To understand the nature of the people one must be a prince,
and to understand the nature of the prince,
one must be of the people.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Nature that framed us of four elements,
warring within our breasts for regiment,
doth teach us all to have aspiring minds.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Men should be either treated generously or destroyed,
because they take revenge for slight injuries -
for heavy ones they cannot.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

We cannot attribute to fortune or virtue that which
is achieved without either.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

The one who adapts his policy to the times prospers,
and likewise that the one whose policy clashes with
the demands of the times does not.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

The distinction between children and adults,
while probably useful for some purposes,
is at bottom a specious one, I feel.
There are only individual egos, crazy for love.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

The more sand has escaped from the hourglass of our life,
the clearer we should see through it.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Hence it comes about that all armed Prophets have been victorious,
and all unarmed Prophets have been destroyed.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

A wise ruler ought never to keep faith when by doing
so it would be against his interests.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Men are so simple and so much inclined to obey immediate
needs that a deceiver will never lack victims for his deceptions.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

The new ruler must determine all the injuries that he will need to inflict.
He must inflict them once and for all.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

There are three kinds of intelligence:
one kind understands things for itself,
the other appreciates what others can understand,
the third understands neither for itself nor through others.
This first kind is excellent, the second good,
and the third kind useless.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Men rise from one ambition to another:
first,
they seek to secure themselves against attack,
and then they attack others.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

It is necessary for him who lays out a state and arranges
laws for it to presuppose that all men are evil and
that they are always going to act according to the
wickedness of their spirits whenever they have free scope.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

Whoever conquers a free town and does not demolish
it commits a great error and may expect to be ruined himself.
- Niccolo Machiavelli

The only thing necessary for evil to triumph
is for enough good men to do nothing.
- Edmund Burke

Tolerance is the first principle of community;
it is the spirit which conserves
the best that all men think.
- Helen Keller

When It's Darkest, Men See the Stars.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Nearly all men can stand adversity,
but if you want to test a man's character, give him power.
- Abraham Lincoln

Just as a candle cannot burn without fire,
men cannot live without a spiritual life.
- The Buddha

There is a good ear, in some men,
that draws supplies to virtue
out of very indifferent nutriment.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

How could man rejoice in victory
and delight in the slaughter of men?
- Lao Tzu

Most men lead lives of quiet desperation
and go to the grave with the song still in them.
- Henry David Thoreau

The reason why men do not obey us,
is because they see the mud at the bottom of our eye.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Women want mediocre men,
and men are working to be as mediocre as possible.
- Margaret Mead

There are times, sir, when men of good conscience
cannot blindly follow orders.
- Captain Picard, STAR TREK: The Next Generation

Great men or men of great gifts
you shall easily find,
but symmetrical men never.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Do not pray for easy lives.
Pray to be stronger men.
- John F. Kennedy


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- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

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