- read famous books online for free

Critical and Historical Essays — Volume 2 by Baron Thomas Babington Macaulay Macaulay
page 2 of 1012 (00%)


(March 1827)

Oeuvres completes de MACHIAVEL, traduites par J. V. PERIER Paris:

Those who have attended to the practice of our literary tribunal
are well aware that, by means of certain legal fictions similar
to those of Westminster Hall, we are frequently enabled to take
cognisance of cases lying beyond the sphere of our original
jurisdiction. We need hardly say, therefore, that in the present
instance M. Perier is merely a Richard Roe, who will not be
mentioned in any subsequent stage of the proceedings, and whose
name is used for the sole purpose of bringing Machiavelli into

We doubt whether any name in literary history be so generally
odious as that of the man whose character and writings we now
propose to consider. The terms in which he is commonly described
would seem to import that he was the Tempter, the Evil Principle,
the discoverer of ambition and revenge, the original inventor of
perjury, and that, before the publication of his fatal Prince,
there had never been a hypocrite, a tyrant, or a traitor, a
simulated virtue, or a convenient crime. One writer gravely
assures us that Maurice of Saxony learned all his fraudulent
policy from that execrable volume. Another remarks that since it
DigitalOcean Referral Badge