LONDON. Printed for H. Cox next Castle-yard in Holborne: and H. Bonwick in St. Pauls Church-yard, 1679.



IT is the common humour of Mankind, principally to fear the danger which is next at hand, and to be more carefully concern'd for things present, than is requisite; and on the contrary, to make less ac­count than they ought of those things which are to come, and at a distance; and this out of a certain presumption, that Time and the contingency of humane accidents may afford some remedy for the latter.


IT happens many times that the wisdom which is over-curious, and too too considerative, may be blame-worthy; inasmuch as the af­fairs of the World are subject to so many and so great a diversity of oc­currences and disappointments, that that seldom happens, which wise men imagined would come to pass. That person therefore who quits the present good, out of a fear of the future danger, (it being presuppos'd that the danger is not inevitable and too near at hand) finds, to his sor­row, that he has let slip the occasion which presented it self to him of gaining honour or advantage, meer­ly out of a fear of the danger, which is afterwards found to have been vain.


WHen the prudent man finds himself induc'd to give way to some just cause of discontent (from what occasion soever it may proceed) he ought to moderate it, what lies in his power, with a mature judg­ment; out of this motive, that he is not so much to mind his own pri­vate interest, as that of the publick; since it is not unlikely, but that his discontent may be prejudicial to the welfare of the State.


A Great power, and that united in one person, is more to be dreaded than that which is divided amongst several parties; which lat­ter, as it has a diversity of motives, so has it also a diversity and discord­ancy of operations, and those pro­moting a diversity of designes.


THere is this observable in Re­publicks, that they are not govern'd according to the inclinati­ons of a single person, but by the joint deliberations and consent of many; and thence it comes, that commonly they are thought to car­ry on their consultations with more moderation and respect.


SUch as the Prince is in point of Morality, such is the government of affairs. If the Prince himself be a person of no great esteem, those are in a condition tending to ruine; is he be a person of conduct, and ver­tuous, they flourish.


NEw Conquests, if they be not not well regulated, nor prudently go­verned, do rather burthen the person [Page 5] who has made them, than render him more potent and considerable. For it is not to be expected that he should be the occasion of any good or happiness to a Government, which he hath acquir'd by indirect means.


ASwe find in the ordering of mans body, that it is not sufficient the Head be free from all indisposition, but it is withal requisite that the other Members exercise their several fun­ctions: So neither is it sufficient in the Government of a State, that the Prince himself be unchargeable with any default in the management of affairs, if there be not a correspon­dency of diligence and vertuous a­ction in his Officers.


THe Prince and the Republick are seriously to consider, what diffe­rence there is between being the first [Page 6] Aggressors in a war against another, and expecting the other to be the first beginner thereof; between treating about the dividing of another State, and expecting till their own be in danger thereof: and lastly, whether it be better to have one only Assistant, or to engage alone against several joint Adversaries; and after such consideration made to deliberate a­bout what is likely to prove most conducive to their particular inte­rest.


IT is a thing of singular prudence and great repute in a great Prince, when he so demeans himself in his affairs, as that they who are inferi­our to him, have no occasion to sus­pect, that he does any thing out of dissimulation, or by way of persona­tion, or out of any other design that is not good and justifiable.


WHen Princes enter into leagues, in order to the reducing of inte­rests to a certain equality, there easily arise disgusts and jealousies among them; whence it often happens, that enterprises begun with a great opini­on of success, meet with many diffi­culties, and in fine come to nothing.


FOr a man to be a King may some­times be the effect of success; but to exercise that sacred and royal function, which proposes to it self for its last end, the good and wel­fare of his people, depends wholly on the person himself, and the ver­tue which ought to be attendant on him.


IN difficult and intricate deliberati­ons, the Prince ought to approve [Page 8] those for easie and desirable which are necessary, or at least those which in comparison of others, seem to imply less difficulty, and less dan­ger.


THe greater and more powerful a King is, the more honou­rable it is for him to employ his grandeur in the maintenance and administration of justice, and the publick faith; there being not any thing more unbecoming a Prince or Republick, than to be defective in the observance of publick obliga­tions.


IN things that are doubtful, the Prince ought to continue in sus­pence, and to reserve to himself, as much as lyes in his power, the means of taking and fixing upon that re­solution, which he shall find by the [Page 9] general course of affairs likely to prove most beneficial and expedi­ent.


THe prudential Captain is he, who to obtain a victory with grea­ter security, would rather do it with great protraction of time, much hardship endur'd, and cautious ad­venturing forward, with sufficient provision for all accidents, than to overcome with ease and expedi­tion, meerly to acquire glory to him­self by puting all to an immediate hazard.


IT commonly happens through the corrupt judgment of mankind, that prodigality is more recom­mended in a King, though in some measure attended with rapine, than frugality, though accompani'd by an abstinence from encroach­ing [Page 10] upon that which is anothers.


ALL the things, for which men are so industrious and concern'd in this world, are reducible to two points, to wit, profit and honour; under that of profit is comprehended whatever concerns the Body, under that of honour, whatever concerns the mind.


THE Prince ought to be grave, by a regular stayedness of de­meanour, governing himself with moderation in all his affairs, per­forming the promises he hath made, and standing more in fear of doing that which is evil, than that any ill should be done to him; and all this with a continual remembrance, that he being but a man, has receiv'd from God a power almost divine; but to this end, that he might be a furtherer [Page 11] and advancer of things just, and of good report, in his Government.


THE Citizen who begins to con­cern himself in the management of the publick affairs, ought to live according to the usual course of the other Citizens, and accommodate himself to their humour, and with all the dexterity and prudence he can, promote those things, wherewith the populace are more satisfy'd, and by which they are ordinarily kept in a good humour. By these com­pliances he will come into repute and credit, and acquire authority.


THey who are entrusted with the management of the affairs of a free State, ought to be always mind­ful of two precepts of Plato. One is, that they principally promote the advantage of the Citizens, and [Page 12] make all their endeavours subservi­ent to that end, not regarding their own private interests. The other is, that they have an eye on the whole body of the Republick, so as that though they incline to one party, yet they must notdesert another. The rea­son of it is, that the Commonwealth ought to be govern'd as a Guardian­ship▪ is, to wit, for the good and advantage of those who are receiv'd under the charge thereof, and not altogether for theirs, to whom it is committed.


IT is the peculiar charge of the Ma­gistrate, to be careful, that he represent the person of the City, and that he maintain the order and dig­nity thereof, observe the Laws, and be mindful of the things committed to his trust, and make provision not only for what is done, but also for what ought to be done; it being [Page 13] his business, that the Common­wealth be as well regulated after his death, as it was, while he liv'd.


THat War is just which is neces­sary, and that is a pious▪ recourse to Arms, when there remains no hopes otherwise than in Arms; and that war is just which a Prince enters into▪ either to recover what is lost, or to prevent the wrong intended him.


THis ought to be heeded by Go­vernours, that when they par­don a small number of delinquent persons, they disoblige all the good; in regard that these latter perceiving that mischief is pardon'd, cannot promise themselves that good will be requited by the Governours; and thereupon▪ persuading themselves that there is more to be gotten a­mong [Page 14] the wicked, they are easily di­verted from well doing.


IT is always observ'd, that in Ci­ties, they who are necessitous en­vy the good, and have an esteem for the wicked; they quarrel at things of ancient establishment, and are for­ward to promote novelties; and out of the aversion they have for the wealthier sort, they study tumult and seditions, imagining that their po­verty and multitude will indemnify them from the punishments, due to the disorders, whereof they are the occasions and abettors.


WHen persons of a mean and de­spicable condition are guilty of any miscarriage, it is known but to few persons, and the noise of their actions reaches no further than their conditions will bear. But the [Page 15] acts and demeanour of those who are of great quality, and owners of great Estates, are remarkable to all, and so become more highly censureable.


IT is seldom seen that a vertuous man loses his Liberty, but he withal in some respect loses his Life; in regard it is a thing noto­rious to all, and of great difficulty to those who have been educated and enur'd to freedom, to be re­duc'd to a servile life, inasmuch as of all things in the world Liberty is the best and most desireable, the very name whereof is a character of vertue, as servitude is a mark of misfortune.


WHen a person of noble extracti­on degenerates from his An­cestors by the doing of things that are not vertuous, he ought to re­member, [Page 16] that by how much the more illustrious the Lives of his Pro­genitors were, in their times, so much the more scandalous and re­proachable will his appear: inas­much as the lustre and reputation of Ancestors is as it were a light to their Descendents, which discovers, to the eyes of others, the vertue or vice which is remarkable in them.


'TIS an humour highly commen­dable in a victorious Prince, when he is so far mindful of him­self, as to endeavour rather to do what is consistent with the rules of generosity, than to impose conditi­ons too insupportable upon his con­quer'd enemies.


HE who is of an humour in­clin'd to peace, will not be di­verted from the concluding of it [Page 17] by the great difficulties which pre­sent themselves in the negotiati­on thereof; inasmuch as the difficul­ties occurrent therein, are remov'd either by the force of down-right justice, or by retaliating injustice with injustice, and counterpoising reason with reason, or by the en­during of a lesser prejudice, or by a mutual deference of several parties in abating somewhat of their right; as shall seem most conve­nient to prudent persons, according to the importance of the thing in dispute.


IT is the property of a well establi­sh'd and well regulated Com­monwealth, that all Affairs, or the greatest part thereof, as far as it is possible, be manag'd, and decided by the Laws, rather than left to the de­cision and discretion of a Judge; in­asmuch as there are few of so great [Page 18] abilities and sound understanding, as to be sufficiently skill'd in the Laws, and withal of unquestion'd integrity, to give right judgement in a doubtful case; whereas the Laws themselves, by long experience of affairs, and by mature consideration, are reduc'd to perfection: but the judgment of man according to his natural bent to love or a version is wrested and corrupted without the support of the Law.


AMong those of the popular rank, discords arise from the dispari­ty of Estates, in regard those of the lower rate are desirous to be equal to those of the higher; but among the Nobility, they proceed from grandeurs, inasmuch as they who are equal are desirous to aggrandize themselves.


WHen men are come near that disaster or inconvenience into which they are fatally design'd to fall, 'tis then that they are principal­ly depriv'd of those advantages of circumspection and prudence, with the assistance whereof they might, in all likelihood, have avoided the inconvenience which threatned them.


WHen matters of great impor­tance are under debate, there is not any thing more necessary on the one side, nor more dangerous on the other, than to take advice there­upon; and no doubt the prudent per­son stands less in need of counsel than the imprudent, and according­ly the former derives greater advan­tages from taking counsel than the other, because he has so great a [Page 20] stock of prudence, as to be able to consider and weigh things of him­self, and amongst the reasons that are offer'd, to discern those which make most for his interest. But what as­surance can the imprudent person have, in asking counsel, that the ad­vertisements he receives are good and faithful? For if the person who gives counsel be not highly faithful and well affected to him who de­sires it, but is inducible to be other­wise, out of some notorious concern of his own, or out of some motive of advantage, or flender satisfacti­on, he will frame his advice so as that it may be most beneficial to himself. And that intention of his being for the most part unknown to the party consulting, he makes no discovery, if he be not a prudent person, of the perfidiousness of the Counsel that is given him.


HE who is desirous to ballance things between Princes, and to observe a punctual neutrality, must, with the greatest circumspection he can, abstain not only from all acts, but also from any discovery, which may raise a suspicion of his being inclin'd to one side more than the other.


YOuth, as it is that part of Man's Age which is most gree­dy of honour, and looks upon dis­grace with the greatest indignation, so is it also the most capable of en­during the inconveniencies, difficul­ties, and hardships, which necessa­rily attend War. The difference there is between men or nations is not to be measured by years, but by ingenuity, vivacity, and soundness of judgment, study, industry, and [Page 22] the particular exercises of vertue.


IF a great person has done thee an injury, dissemble thy reception thereof, and smother thy resent­ments; for it is a pure extrava­gance to be disgusted against a per­son, whom thou dar'st not call to account, and whom it were impru­dence in thee further to exasperate.


THere happens an infinite varie­ty of turns and changes in mi­litary affairs; therefore ought not a man to grow too confident upon new advantages, nor be too much depressed, upon the contrary: inas­much as ever and anon, there comes some alteration, whereby this les­son may be learnt, that when op­portunity presents it self, it should not be neglected, because it lasts but for a short time.


WHen matters come first under deliberation, it is most seri­ously to be consider'd, what the issue thereof may be; and then ought men to be cautious how they assent to uncivil and pernicious demands. For some have found by experience, that when such as they are treating withal have obtain'd what they de­sir'd, it has prov'd only an encou­ragement to them to make a fur­ther progress in their demands.


THe more sudden and unexpect­ed accidents are, the greater discomposure and astonishment do they cause to those to whom they happen. It is therefore the part of a prudent person, to make that pro­vision before-hand, which may pre­vent his being surpriz'd or disturb'd; or if it so happen that it cannot be [Page 24] avoided, let him endeavour, from the present state of things, to fore­see what may come to pass, using all the precautious remedies, which his experience and prudence can sug­gest, and not suffering things to grow worse and worse.


IT always happens, in civil con­versation, that, whether a vici­ous act be chastis'd, or a vertuous act recompenc'd, the whole body of the Citizens receives a good there­by; nor was there ever any expedi­ent more contributory to the preser­vation of Cities in a happy and flou­rishing state, than that counterbal­lancing of punishment and reward, justly apply'd according to desert.


ALL the assurances that can be had of an Enemy whether by oath, parole, engagement to friends, [Page 25] promises, or whatever other way can be imagin'd, are good; but by reason of the corruption of persons, the de­pravation of Morality, and the vi­cissitude of times and accidents, the best expedient is for a man to take such order in his affairs, as that the Enemy may not be in a capacity to annoy him.


THE present method of carrying on a War is much different from that of the Ancients, who did not their work by Assassinations, and surprises, but discover'd to the Ene­my, if any base contrivance were in hand against him, and all out of a confidence that they should be able to overcome him by Vertue.


WHen a man is advanc'd to some great charge; it is soon dis­cover'd whether he be a person of [Page 26] great abilities, or not; but above all, by the augmentation of his worldly concerns, and the advantages he may have by his Office, the affecti­ons of his heart are discover'd, to­gether with his disposition; inas­much as, the greater person he is, so much the less cautious will he be, in suffering himself to be carryed a­way with the current of his own na­tural humour.


BE it thy continual care, that thy Superiour conceive no ill opini­on of thee, and be not over-confident of the leading an unblameable course of life, but endeavour to be such an one as that thou maist not be much afraid to fall into his hands; inas­much as there is an infinite number of unforeseen occasions, wherein thou mayst stand in need of him, and be glad to insinuate into his fa­vour.


THE Governour ought rather to fix his consideration upon the substance and reality of the thing, than upon the appearance of it, mea­suring it rather by prudence, than by his own will, and being always distrustful of himself; in regard it is a great reproach to a State, when imprudence is attended by danger.


THE grand mystery of War con­sists rather in obedience, than a curiosity of knowing the reason of the General's orders; and that Army is well fitted and prepar'd for danger, which, before it is set on work, is the most exactly kept under discipline.


ALL those who are concern'd, or commissionated to deliberate and treat of Affairs of great impor­tance, ought to consider with them­selves, whether that they undertake will prove beneficial to the Com­monwealth, honorable to them­selves, and may be compass'd with­out any great difficulty.


IN the carrying on of Enterprises, it is to be observ'd, whether he who gives the advice, is also willing to expose his person to danger; and when the enterprise has taken effect it is to be consider'd, to whom the honour thereof is principally to be attributed.


IN the times of publick disturbances and seditions, they always have the greatest power and credit, who of all are the most wicked; but in times of peace and tranquillity, they are most in esteem who are the most remarkable for their conduct, and observance of discipline.


MEN would not be so violently addicted to mischief, were it not for the advantages or satisfacti­on they reap thereby. This gave occasion to wise Law givers to make punishments and rewards the ground­work and support of their Govern­ments, not so much out of a design to afflict their subjects, as to divert them from those things wherein they are apt to follow their own corrupt inclinations.


AS Discord divides one City and makes it two, or more, and gives occasion to those who have their eye upon it to advance and carry on their designes with greater success against it; so Union restrains and cements the Counsels of many, and reduces them into one body, and by that means keeps the government closely compacted together, and un­corrupted.


AS it happens in a structure of importance, that there is more danger of the falling of one Stone towards the foundation, than if a hundred Tiles fall down from the roof of it: so is it a much greater fault in point of policy, to disobey justice, than to commit many slight faults against the particular devoir between man and man; since it has been ob­serv'd, [Page 31] that many times great scan­dals have been rais'd in the Com­monwealth, which were occasion'd at first by some small disobedience.


IT would be a good and wholsom Law, if those persons, who ob­serve no regularity in their lives, who are negligent in the managery of their domestick concerns, who order not their affairs as they ought to do, and discover no observance of discipline in their own families, but live in perpetual jarring and con­tention with their Neighbours, should be put under the tuition of Guardians, who might treat them and keep them in, as distracted and extravagant per­sons, to prevent the communicating their extravagance to others; inas­much as the Commonwealth is never more likely to fall into disturbance, than it is by their means who observe no rule in their private demeanour.


THere is not any thing more com­mon or more pernicious among men, than that deceitful imaginati­on of one mans condition being bet­ter than another. And this pro­ceeds hence, that mens eyes are so blinded with malice and envy, that they would rather with much trouble grasp at what belongs to another, than quietly enjoy their own. The condition of Princes is really good, if they make a good use thereof. In like manner, the popular state is good, if men acquit themselves therein as they ought to do. The condition of the wealthy is good, if they use it with moderation; and so is that of the poor, if it be attend­ed with patience, which is of such a soveraign vertue, as to make that good which is generally accounted otherwise.


IF Subjects knew what a hard task the Prince has in commanding, or if the Prince knew how sweet a thing it is to live in tranquillity, the meaner sort would have a great com­passion on the Grandees, and the Grandees would envy those of a mean condition; inasmuch as the diver­tisements which the Prince enjoies, amount to little in comparison of the discontents he is forc'd to endure. But as the station of the Prince is the highest of all, as he can do more than all, as his worth exceeds that of all the rest, as he endures more than all, and surpasses all in govern­ment; so is it necessary, that the Court, the person, and life of the Prince be better regulated than those of all the rest, inasmuch as it is the rule, measure, and standard thereof.


THere is not any thing whereof a wise Prince should be more self­satisfy'd, than that he has about him some persons eminent for their valour and conduct, to carry on the military concerns, and others signal for their prudence and integrity, to manage the civil.


IT is a very remarkable observati­on, that men eminent for their valour and good fortune in Military affairs are born and flourish much more in one time than they do in another. For if a valiant person rise up in the time of a daring Prince, he shall be in great esteem, and em­ploy'd upon extraordinary designes; but if he live under a timorous and distrustful Prince, such a Prince shall make greater account of those who study how to improve and advance [Page 35] his Revenues, than he will do of him who shall return crown'd with Lau­rels from the Wars.


THey who are desirous of the re­putation of good Princes, ought to propose to themselves the exam­ples of such as have been such in their several ages: for to that end are the Lives and Actions of illu­strious persons, by faithful Histori­ans, transmitted to Posterity; that Princes and Grandees may have such Exemplars set before them as they ought to imitate.


THE greatest care a Governour ought to take, is to find out the person who shall advise him to go­vern well, and to maintain his Estate with Justice. And that is not done with harsh words, but with a meek­ness that gains mens hearts, and [Page 36] acts of good example; for a gene­rous Soul is easily drawn in to obey, when the person who imposes the command is of good repute and ex­ample.


THere happens one thing in the world which is worthy our se­rious observance; to wit, that as among the good, there is some one, transcendently good, so in like manner, among the bad, there is one transcendently such. But the mis­fortune is, that the good person does not gain so much honour by his vertue, as the lewd person does re­putation by his lewdness; in regard vertue renders a man naturally in­clin'd to retirement, whereas the vicious person never thinks better of himself, than when he appears upon the Stage.


PRinces ought not to betray their surprize and astonishment at any thing, even when things seem to go most against them; but they should obstinately stand upon the defence of their own, expecting their neigh­bour Princes will find it their own interest to keep them up in their for­mer station, to prevent the over­growth of some ambitious Pre­tender.


THE person o'repress'd with ca­lamities and disasters is always hearkning after some change of for­tune, whereas he who is at his ease does not so much as think of any al­teration; the litter is sufficiently sa­tisfi'd with the present posture of his affairs, and the other looks on Vi­cissitude as the only means to cause some amendment in his condition.


SOme wise men affirm, that when the Commonwealth is upon the choice of a Governour, they should be sure to pitch upon a person who has been at least ten years in the wars; in regard that he alone is most likely to be the best preserver of a desired peace, who has been experimentally acquainted with the miseries and calamities consequent to War.


NO doubt but that Prince does most wisely, who regulates his affairs answerably to his Revenues; in regard that if he do not, and his Territories be but small, he must either run the hazard of losing what he is possess'd of, or, to keep himself up, do those things that are burthensom to his Subjects, and so his Government must degenerate into Tyranny.


IT is the greatest commendation that can be of the supream Ma­gistrate, to be conversant and fa­miliar with the good, (since that familiarity is the greatest incen­tive and encouragement that can be to goodness;) to be liberal of his estate in doing of good works, (it being notorious, that he who values his reputation, makes but little ac­count of mony;) to extirpate Tyranny (inasmuch as the concent and har­mony of the Princes Government consists in the chastisement of the bad, and the rewarding of the good;) and to shew his munificence upon all occasions; in regard there is not any thing more endears the Majesty of the Prince, than when he makes all the demonstrations he can of his grandeur, in relieving others, and not expecting that he should derive great advantage from others.


TWO things render a City secure, and highly contribute to the commendation and honour of its Governours; the one, when it is guarded by those whose Estates are the most considerable, & is well pro­vided with all things relating to the defensive part; the other, when there is a fair correspondence between its Governours and their Neighbours; without which there cannot be a free intercourse of commerce, and mu­tual supplies of all necessary pro­visions.


A Soveraign Lord, who would be obey'd, will do well, in the first place to conclude it necessary, that when he commands, he should make some discovery of his own personal observance thereof, in regard that no Lord is to propose that soveraign­ty [Page 41] to himself, as to be exempted from the acts and exercises of Vertue; especially since that the Prince, be­ing the mirrour of others, is ob­lig'd so evidently and actually to apply himself thereto, as that he himself should give example to those that are under his Government.


TO meet with some unexpected misfortune, is a thing, of its own nature, not good; yet may it accidentally contribute to the ad­vantage of a person of sound under­standing; in as much as it may be an occasion to him of standing more strictly upon his guard, in case the like accident may happen another time, there being few who truly be­lieve what evil is, till they have had some experience thereof. Whence it comes, that all persons not well vers'd in affairs proceed ordinarily either with too much negligence, or [Page 42] too much presumption; whereas he who has once weather'd out a dis­astrous chance, becomes thereby so much the more cautious and consi­derate.


PRinces will do well, so to con­verse with their Subjects, as that they may be induc'd to serve them ra­ther out of a readiness of inclination, than out of hopes of reward; in re­gard that the less respect men have for mony, the less it implies of servi­tude. For he who loves another sincerely and generously, does not be­come arrogant in prosperity, nor flinches from him in adversity; does not bemoan himself upon the consi­deration of poverty, nor is cast down and disgusted at his not being much in favour, nor recoyles in the time of persecution. In short, there is a correspondence between Life and Love to the last gasp.


EVery State ought so to desire Peace, as to be nevertheless di­ligent in the making of all Military preparations; for peace without Arms is weak and indefensive. Thence it came, that the Heathens repre­sented even the Goddess of Arts and sciences armed; and so, to be de­sirous of peace and to carry on the preparatives of war, are not things simply contradictory.


HE truly understands the tender and transcendent concern of Friendship, who obliges his friend be­fore he be requir'd to do it. For in so doing, he is not only generous in the disposal of his kindnesses, but also causes them to be receiv'd with a greater sense of obligation, by disbur­thening his friend of that bashfulness and fear of repulse, which commonly attends asking.


THat Prince does well who makes it his business to be well sup­ply'd with prudent Commanders and persons eminent for their valour for the management of War: But no doubt, he does better, whose Court flourishes with wise Counsellors, and Statesmen; in regard that the gaining of battels consists in the prowess and valorous deportment of many, but it happens sometimes, that the government of the Com­monwealth is committed to the ma­nagement of one particular person.


OF all employments the worst is that which is concern'd in the chastisement of other mens miscar­riages; and thence is it that a well­advis'd person does what lies in his power, to avoid them; in regard that the reprehension of Vices does [Page 45] more commonly beget an aversion for the reprover, than it does amend­ment in those that are reprov'd.


EVery fault, what excuse soever there may be for it, is however condemnable; inasmuch as if it be committed out of a sudden sally of passion, it is already a great miscar­riage, but if out of forethought and deliberation, the mischief is so much the greater.


'TIS well done for a man to en­deavour to manage all his con­cerns with reason, and to carry on every enterprize by order; but in the doing of it, there is much dif­ficulty. And yet considerate per­sons, to compass what they have design'd, will use such diligence and precaution, as may prevent those inconveniences; which, for want [Page 46] thereof, might otherwise ensue.


IT is but reasonable, that the Citi­zen, who, while he continu'd in the quality of a private person, was affable and familiar with his friends, should demean himself with an equal degree of affability and huma­nity towards them, when he has put on the Robe of Magistracy. For as it is the character of a mean spirit to be arrogant upon the honours successively acquir'd by valorous at­chievements; so when a man grows proud upon his advancement to an Office, whereof he must within a short time after be devested, he be­trays his indigence of modesty and vertue, and little reflects, that if mens exaltation to honours must change their manners, humours, and deportment, it ought to change them for the better, and not for the worse.


WHen persons of understanding propose to themselves the ob­taining of somewhat which is not to be obtain'd without some diffi­culty, they bethink themselves of the proper means to compass their ends. Many things are obtain'd, by the dextrous and insinuating applicati­ons of those employ'd therein; as appears frequently by the Negotiati­ons of Ambassadors, and other pub­lick persons.


THE chief Commander of an Army, besides his skill and ex­perience in military affaires, ought to be magnanimous, of a sedate tem­per, valiant, liberal, and prudent. It is expected from him, that he should stand upon his authority in the management of affairs, that he should be grave in discourse, and a [Page 48] punctual observer of his promises. When affairs of importance come into debate, he ought to use all ima­ginable circumspection, to deliberate with a mature judgement, and then put things in execution with great diligence. His demeanour and coun­tenance towards his Soldiers ought to be cheerful, serene, and obliging to all, yet with a remembrance of his quality, and the distance there is between them; that so he may not, by his excessive familiarity, give his Army occasion to be disobedient and undisciplin'd; nor disgust it, by be­ing too morose and severe. And whereas the good affections of the Souldiery is the most certain hope he has for the obtaining of a victory, it ought to be his constant endea­vour not only that they should bear him the reverence and respect due to his character, but also that they should have a mutual kindness one for ano­ther, and be sensible of their being [Page 49] members of the same body; reward­ing those who merit it, and dis­gracing and punishing the neglectors of their duty.


THE power of Fortune (by that name did the Heathens call the secret and not ordinarily perceptible disposition of the extraordinary works of God) is of wonderful con­sequence in humane accidents, but especially in the case of War and Armes. So that a Command not rightly understood, an Order not well executed, some temerarious action, or the voice of an ordinary Souldier, does many times transfer the victory to those who before seem'd vanquish'd. And that causes of a sudden an infinite number of accidents, which it is impossible to foresee, or remedy.


MEN are never more easily de­ceiv'd, than they are by those who have the reputation of being most sincere, that is, at the greatest distance from deceiving.


THE greater and more important things are, the more apt are men to discourse of them, never minding how closely they keep to the truth, or how far they receed from it. There are some who be­lieve, and hold to be most certain, what they have heard, not regard­ing whether it be true or false. O­thers, though a thing be ever so true, relate it otherwise than it is, and af­terwards Time making some addi­tionals to the story, the thing is much augmented beyond what was reported at the first.


TO come into favour and autho­rity, one while by ostentation and munificence, another while by industry and vigilance, are two ways equally prejudicial and pernicious, when they are practis'd subtilly in order to a mans advancement to Go­vernment. Thence came it that wise men have affirm'd, that the tracks leading to principality are steepy and difficult, but when once men are gotten into them, every thing helps and sets them forward.


IT cannot be easily imagin'd, whence it comes that Princes are so favourable to some, and so cross and inflexible to others; to wit, whether there be in that some secret of nature, or that it lies in our power to keep our selves in a mean, so as that we may not too obstinately [Page 52] oppose the inclinations of him who governs, and yet withal, that we for­bear precipitating our selves into a scandalous adulation, and a kind of servile deportment, but that we ob­serve such a moderation as neither to crouch to ambition, nor be over de­sirous of honour, and by that means pass our lives with more security, and less danger.


THere are but few that can by pru­dent advertisements distinguish between good and evil, between what is profitable, and what is pre­judicial, but follow the ordinary road of growing better, and more cautious, by the knowledge which they derive from the common events of things.


THose things that are foreseen prove much less hurtful, than [Page 53] those whereof we have no preap­prehension at all. He therefore may be accounted a person of a sound understanding and excellent temper, who has the government of himelf, and as with an unstartled spirit, en­tertains the arrival of sudden and un­expected accidents.


THough the particular thoughts and imaginations of every one be known only to God himself, yet the natural inclinations of a people or a Province is a thing obvious and easy to be known; inasmuch as their actions being publick, they must needs thereby discover their intenti­ons and affections; from which prudent men will be able to give a character of them accordingly.


SUbjects are much more satisfi'd to have their Prince near them, [Page 54] than at a great distance from them; inasmuch as there accrew thence two considerable advantages; one, that the truly loyal, and well affected, being more immediately under his protection, are so much the more engag'd to his service; the other, that the pernicious designes of tur­bulent persons are the more easily prevented.


A Commander in chief ought to to acquire reputation, not by the hardships and dangers of others (as many do) but by the sweat and hazard of his own person, and by the interposition of his own vertue. And whereas it is no less honourable to terminate a War by Counsel, than to put a period thereto by Arms, he ought to use both means, and should principally reflect, that the first successes are those which rendor him most dreadful to the Enemy, [Page 55] or, on the contrary, despicable and of little repute; in regard that, for the most part, such as the begin­ning is, such is the issue.


AS it is a thing unquestionably certain, that Victories are gain'd by preventions and diversions, so is it withal certain, that he is at a great distance from good counsel, who, without evident necessity, transfers the War, which another had been first engag'd in, to himself.


A Person of comprehensive parts, who can husband time well, has no reason to complain that his life is too short; for he who makes ad­vantage of the infinite occasions that present themselves to him does anti­cipate Time it self.


LIberty is a thing makes a great noise in the world, yet few tru­ly understand wherein it consists. But of all kinds of Liberty, that of Persuasion is the most desir'd by all, in so much that to gain it, some would rather be transplanted to people Solitudes, than smother their discontents to live in well-govern'd Societies.


HE who desires to be in favour with his Superiour ought to make all the discoveries he can of the respect and reverence he bears him; for if there be once a failure in that, the endearing correspon­dence between Superiours and In­feriours is immediately dissolv'd.


HE who is entrusted with the custody of a City which ex­pects a Siege, ought above all things, to be think himself of all the reme­dies which may protract time, and to cut off all opportunities, though ever so small, from the Enemy, in­asmuch as many times one day, nay one hour, produces some accident which may occasion the relief of it.


HE is easily deceiv'd who relies on the first advertisement he re­ceives of some accident that hath happen'd, in regard that commonly the effects are not aswerable to the first advices that come. He there­fore who is not forc'd by necessity to do otherwise, ought to expect several confirmations thereof, ere he takes up his final resolution, what he ought to do.


IT is a dangerous thing to be go­vern'd by examples, if there be not a concurrence in the general, and also in all the particulars of the same reasons to be consider'd. The same may be said, if things be not regu­lated by the same prudential motives and reflections; and withal, if there be not a combination of all the other inducements, and the accidents and success consequent thereto.


AS it is a servile act for any man to be a slave to his affections; so, to subdue anger, the great disturber of counsel; to be moderate in Vi­ctory, which, of its own nature, is insolent and haughty; to be abso­lute master of ones self, which is the devoir of a well temper'd and ge­nerous soul; to exercise humanity, meekness, and liberality towards [Page 59] an Enemy, is a thing truly royal, divine, and worthy of eternal me­mory.


THere is not any thing more be­coming or more necessary to a Prince, than to be just, liberal, and benevolent; inasmuch as it is the inseparable; attribute of Grandeur and Power to relieve the oppressed, and to alleviate the calamities of others; and this especially in Kings, who, by such acts, approach so much the nearer the Divinity, whose living images they are, upon the score of their supereminent rank.


PErsons of lewd inclinations have always some opportunity of do­ing evil, and though they do it not, yet is it not so great a satisfaction to others, to see that they do not commit those enormities which they [Page 60] might, as it is an affliction, to think that it is in their power to commit them.


THat Commonwealth wherein there is justice duly administred for the poor, chastisement for such as are insolent and tyrannically inclin'd, an exact observance of weights and measures, as to those things which concern the sustentation of humane life, discipline and exercise for the younger sort, and as little avarice as may be in those that are advanc'd in age, must needs be an excellent con­stitution of Government.


LET not any Prince think that the choice of a Tutor for his Son is a thing of small importance. For in that case, his diligence and cir­cumspection ought to be the greater, in that he is not to do in this, as in [Page 61] other Offices which are bestow'd ei­ther upon the mediation of others, or by corruption, or importunity or friendship, or for a reward of some services already done: in re­gard that though some one of his Courtiers has manag'd an Em­bassy with good success, or been General of an Army, or some great Officer about the Prince's person, or relating to his Houshold, yet does it not follow that such a person is fit to teach his Son. The reason is, that for a man to be an Ambassador, or General, it requires only in the former a good stock of dexterity and dissimulation, and in the latter, that he have valour and good for­tune; but to be Governour to a Prince, it is requisite, that he have all the accomplishments, and qua­lifications, suitable to the education of a person of that transcendent dignity.


IN the disastrous accidents of our life, wherein our own industry and strength are of little account, the only remedy we have, is to look on the worst of misfortunes as things not incompatible with the conditi­on of humanity, and to be so far prudent, as to smother our resent­ments thereof.


BEtween two Princes, the one ad­dicted to the exercises of vertue, the other complying with the sug­gestions of vice, there is this diffe­rence, that the latter is only obey'd, but the former is both obey'd and belov'd. Besides, the good and vertuous Prince makes the most difficult enterprises seem light, and on the contrary, the Tyrant makes the lightest seem most heavy. Hap­py therefore is he who is obey'd, but [Page 63] much more happy he who is both obey'd and belov'd; for the body grows weary of obeying, but the mind is never wearied nor cloy'd with loving.


THere is one thing which a wise Prince will always be mindful of, to wit, that, in the management of the publick affairs, his Gover­nours and Judges never permit the abrogation of ancient Customes, nor the introduction of new ones; in regard the Populace is commonly so humorous and extravagant, that they would every day have new Princes, and new Laws.


IT is an easy matter to design what a man would have done by ano­ther person, and by what means it is most likely to be brought to effect; but to command the execution there­of [Page 64] is no slight thing, inasmuch as be­tween those two there are many things which obstruct, retard, and di­sturb such executions.


'TIS a thing out of all dispute, as Aristotle affirms in his Rheto­rick, that Riches do often render those persons, that are possess'd thereof, proud and insolent: but he who shall wisely consider it, will say with Seneca, that none is more wor­thy, none makes greater approaches to the Divinity, than he who makes no account of riches; which, saies he, I am far from affirming that thou shouldst not be possess'd of, but I would have thee possess'd thereof without any fear, distraction, or di­sturbance. Which happiness thou art not to acquire, but by this only expedient, to wit, by a firm per­suasion, that thou canst live happily without them, and that thou shouldst [Page 65] always look on them, as if they were taking their flight away from thee.


WHat presumption soever a man may have of his own abilities, yet ought he not so to rely on his own counsel, as that sometimes it may not be more safe for him to sub­mit to that of others; in regard that he who is asham'd of consul­ting, and defies the conduct and di­rections of another, may assure him­self, for the most part, that he has a fool to his Guide, and consequently that he must needs be guilty of many miscarriages.


IT is not prudence to judge of Coun­sels by the event of things, in re­gard that many times good Counsels have not an issue answerable thereto, and on the contrary, evil Counsels [Page 66] may prove fortunate. But when evil Counsels are applauded, upon the score of their being successful, it is a secret encouragement for men to do those things that are unjust, which may prove highly prejudicial to the Commonwealth, inasmuch as evil Counsels are not always fortunate; and there is also another fault in blaming and censuring the more prudent Party, whose advertise­ments have not had the success which was expected, in regard that such a procedure disheartens the Citizens from giving their opinions freely, when the publick concerns of their City requires it.


WHen it happens that there is a necessity of denying some per­son his request, it is but requisite, to keep the said person from being dis­gusted, and to assure him of the good will they bear him, and to make [Page 67] some other overture to him, so that he may thereby perceive that they have a respect for him, and would gladly oblige him. Upon this demeanour, the other, if he have any sentiment of humanity, will be as much, if not more, satisfi'd, than if his re­quest had been granted: So great an influence have kind words and an obliging carriage over the minds of good natur'd persons.


IN publick affairs it is requisite that men be extreamly careful and considerate at the beginning of what they design; in regard it will not be afterwards in their power with­out dishonour and danger, to re­ceed from the deliberation once fixt upon, and in which they have for some time persisted.


WHat is wish'd by the greater number does not often succeed in regard that for the most part the events of humane actions depend on the wills of few; and the intentions of these latter being in a manner al­ways different from those of the greater number, things seldome happen otherwise than according to the intention of those from whose directions they derive their first motion.


NEutrality is most commendable in the Wars wherein other par­ties are engag'd, in regard that ma­ny inconveniences and great charges are thereby avoided; and it may be time enough to be concern'd for either party, when success seems to intimate which side is most likely to prevail.


THE clemency of Princes hath always gain'd them good-will and reputation; and, on the con­trary, rigour, (if there be not some extraordinary necessity for it) has always produc'd the contrary effects, and instead of removing the obsta­cles and difficulties, which lay in their way, it has made some additionals thereto.


IT is more wisely done for a man to court his friendship who is unwilling to become his Enemy, than to curry favour with him, who one time or other cannot be his Friend.


THere are three principal conside­rations to be minded in the car­rying on of all Enterprises, to wit, [Page 70] the justice of the Cause, the facility of the Victory to be obtain'd, and the conveniences and advantages ac­cruing thereby.


THere is not any thing so short­liv'd as the remembrance of a Benefit, and many times, the great­er it is, the more likely it is to be repay'd with ingratitude. For, he who is not willing to take off the obligation, by retaliation or remu­neration, often endeavours to do the same thing in another sense, perswading himself, that the good turn was not so great; and they who are asham'd of their having been reduc'd to the necessity of de­siring a kindness, are vext and tor­mented in their minds that they have receiv'd it. So that the remembrance of the necessity into which they were fallen makes a greater impression upon them, than that of the Obli­gation [Page 71] which had been layd upon them.


MAny are the inconveniences that happen in the Armies of con­federated parties; while they are concerting their designes, the oppor­tunity of entring into action slips away, their preparatives are delay'd, interrupted, and diverted, accord­ing to the forces, aimes, and coun­sels of the Princes concern'd, so that it must needs prove a hard matter to make a firm union, where there is so much disorder and distrust, and with­al so great a diversity of inclinations, and courages, and varieties of con­ditions.


'TIS the natural humour of the Populace to be always desirous of novelties, and to be easily fill'd with false and vain persuasions, [Page 72] lightly hurry'd away with the insi­nuations of those who have once set them on work, as the waves of the Sea are stir'd by the blowing of the wind.


SO extravagant is the nature of mankind, that when they are forc'd out of one extreme, wherein they have been violently detain'd, they ride in full speed to the other extreme, without ever making the least halt in the mean.


THere is one thing highly conside­rable in military concerns, and that is the Reputation of the chief Commanders. Assoon as this begins once to decline, the souldiery is im­mediately discourag'd; the loyalty of the Nations concern'd is shaken; there follow distraction and distrust in Counsels, and want of a hearty [Page 73] and cheerful concurrence in Acti­on; the provision for the Army's subsistence is interrupted; and on the contrary the Enemy is heartned, those who were content to observe a Neutrality, are apt to incline to the successful party, and all difficul­ties grow greater and greater.


IN human Actions men ought for the most part to make their Coun­sels complyant with the present Ne­cessity, and not, out of an over­earnestness to overcome that which is too difficult, and as it were impos­sible, to expose the generality to a manifest danger and inconveni­ence.


WE find many times by expe­rience, that those things which at the first prospect present themselves as highly dreadful, appear by degrees [Page 74] so much the less considerable, that, if the former errour be not renew'd by some additional accident, all the terrour in process of time vanishes, and we are induc'd to laugh and wonder at our former astonishment.


HE who finds that there is no ac­count made of him, gives way to disgust, and that inspires him with thoughts of revenge, and in­clines him to attempt dangerous things, which sometimes meet with their design'd effect; especially when the person who is become so daring is of any authority, or remarkable for some extraordinary qualifica­tion.


ALL subjection is burthensome, all restriction is insupportable to him who would live as he pleases himself. A person of that humour [Page 75] can find but little quiet under a re­gular Government, in regard that there is a necessity either of his com­plyance which the Prince, or of his ruin by him.


IT is commonly observ'd, that a resolution taken either too hasti­ly, or with too much affection comes off with a slur. For the much cele­rity of the resolver does not allow him the leisure to reflect on those things which ought to be consider'd, before the resolution be taken; and the excessive affection so prepossesses the mind, that it does not take no­tice of any thing but what is most pressing in such or such a point. To these two examples may be added two others, to wit, in these cases, when there is time enough to deli­berate, and the person deliberating is unprepossess'd with any particular affection, yet out of a certain natu­ral [Page 76] incapacity, or through an insu­perable kind of remisness or debility of spirit, remarkable through all their actions, they never do any thing that holds water.


WHen affairs are reduc'd to the extremity, as that there re­mains nothing for hope to rely upon but the pure Providence of God, the prosecution of the adventure in such a case must be look'd on as the result of reason and prudence, in­somuch that we ought to attempt the danger, not minding how little ground there presents it self to hu­mane prudence. For God many times takes a certain delight in send­ing a spirit of infatuation upon the counsels and designs of some people, and making those calamities which they intended to bring on others to recoyle upon themselves.


THE greater a man's credit and reputation is amongst the gene­rality of the People, the more dan­gerous it is to support and advance him. As therefore it is an easy matter at the beginning to oppose the disor­ders which may ensue thereupon, so when they are come to any growth, it will be so much the more difficult to remedy them.


THE exercise of Arms, the ob­servance of the Lawes, and the frequent celebration of Divine Ser­vice, in a well regulated City cannot ordinarily be separated, without the destruction of them all. So that there is a correspondence between them and the state of the Soul, where­in there are the vegetative part, the sensitive, and the intellectual; which parts yet do not make three Souls, [Page 78] but one only distinguish'd by the operations of the three faculties: So the establishment of the State requires a reciprocal aid and corre­spondence.


WHere ever there is servitude, there is also fear; and the greater the former is, the greater also is the latter. But though servi­tude implies Tyranny, yet has the Tyrant as great a share of the fear, as they over whom he tyrannizes, inasmuch as he who commands Slaves, is not himself free; Now the Tyrant being such, it follows that he himself is servile as well as his people, and so as there is force and indignity on both sides, so is there a continual augmentation of fear.


IN matter of War, Valour and Ar­tifice are highly recommended; but the perfection of Arms con­sists in knowing the true use of the moral Vertues, a right understanding of political affairs, and treading in the Steps of ancient and eminent Commanders.


IN Military affairs, when there is some great designe in hand, the absolute Authority of ordering all is to be conferr'd on one single person who transcends all the rest in point of merit; yet so as that he be ob­lig'd to have always about him such as are well skill'd in Counsel, with whom he may confer, and to whom he may communicate all concerns of importance.


MEN are glad of advertisements and directions in things that are doubtful, not in the certain; in things subject to hazard, and not to prudence: it were therefore but re­quisite to consider what is the prin­cipal concern in the matter whereof we are to deliberate. For in delibe­rations, when any one is not con­strain'd by necessity, he sets himself on work according to the uncon­fined plenitude of his own will, which is in all things and every where free, and then his thoughts are wholly taken up with the suc­cess of the Enterprize, to wit, whe­ther his fears or hopes outweigh one the other; and thereupon he resolves to forbear attempting any thing when hazard has the principal part, and is most likely to carry it; or on the contrary he will attempt the ex­ecution of his designe, when pru­dence [Page 81] tells him that it will prove ad­vantageous.


WHen Commonwealths are well govern'd, the prosecutions of envious persons turn to the advan­tage of those against whom they are intended, for innocency being clear'd by truth, their endeavours prove like the stroaks given to the ball, which the harder it is struck, the higher it rebounds; so the ca­lumniations of the envious instead of eclipsing, add more lustre to those against whom they are di­rected.


COntinual severity must needs ex­asperate those over whom it is exercis'd. But as the excessive in­dulgence of Parents makes their Chil­dren apt to lead an irregular and disobedient course of life; so the [Page 82] remisness of a Prince, who suffers his authority to be slighted, renders the Citizen dissolute, and the Sol­dier undisciplin'd and licentious, and proves withal the occasion of greater mischief, when persons of quality are concern'd. For the insolence of these last is more dangerous than that of a multitude, it being not so difficult to discover the designes wherein many are engag'd, as it is to pump out the secret plottings of one par­ticular person.


WHen the Prince is sollicited by a Grandee in some concern of great importance, and that he is unwilling to grant his request, he ought to consider two points, one relating to the necessary circumstan­ces, as the cause from whence the discontent proceeds, the person dis­gusted, and the present conjuncture of time; the other, how requisite [Page 83] it may be, to counterballance the re­fusal, by conferring some other boon on the Petitioner.


THE good Soldier may be likened to polish'd Steel, which while it is handled preserves its lustre and brightness, and on the contrary, for want of being us'd, growes rusty, and that rust consumes it, and in time makes it contagious; So the good Souldier, who is good only while he is handling his Arms, in the time of War, is prejudic'd in himself, and may prove dangerous to others, when he is out of his pro­per element and employment.


IN the competitions that happen between two several parties, that which is excluded will be rather in­clin'd to close with a third party, than comply with that, between [Page 84] whom and it the precedent com­petition was.


THere is not any thing so prejudi­cial to mankind as a transcen­dent prosperity; for the effects of it, are, licentiousness, luxury, con­fidence to do mischief, an irreclai­mable inclination to disturb the publick by some novelty, and all the inconveniencies consequent to sa­tiety.


THE infamy of being temerarious is more prejudicial to a Military Commander, than the honour of a Victory is advantageous to him; inasmuch as when he is chargeable with temerity, the blame is wholly attributed to him alone, but the ho­nour of the victory, and the prospe­rous management of affairs (at least according to the opinion of ma­ny) [Page 85] is communicable also to others.


SInce there is frequent necessity of changing orders and deliberati­ons, in the time of War, according to the variety of accidents, it should be the principal consideration of a chief Commander, so to accommo­date all things at the beginning, as if he had, as much as may be, fore­seen all events, and all counsels; in regard that, as the prosperous suc­cesses engage the respects and affe­ctions of the Army towards their General, so the contrary makes a proportionable abatement of the same respects and affections, and consequently there is not that sym­pathetical correspondence which ought to be between them.


THE prudent person ought not to entertain any suspicion that [Page 86] men distrust his integrity, and if he does suspect it, he should demean himself so as that the wicked may not be sensible of his having any suspicion of them, lest that upon that occasion fear may augment their licentiousness, and that, as to o­thers, there may not be an abate­ment of their diligence and prom­ptitude.


'TIS prudence in a man to make as if he knew nothing of un­certain newes, or at least to keep it so secret, as not to betray any con­firmation thereof; in regard that many times, either it is absolutely false, or the credit to be given thereto admits of a considerable di­minution.


THey who are induc'd to commit some act in the night time pro­ceed [Page 87] commonly upon some sinful motive, presuming that the night covers in them what the day would discover, to wit, their fear and shame.


FOR this reason has God entrust­ed Princes with the Government of their Dominions, that their Sub­jects may, in order to the obtain­ing of their right, appeale from that Law which is dumb, and as it were dead, and without force in it self, to the living Law which ought to be the Magistrate.


THE principal commendation of military Discipline consists in not opposing danger without ne­cessity, by industry, patience and policy to defeat and elude the enter­prises of the Enemy, rather than by destroying them in a cruel and bloody engagement.


A Benefit conferr'd upon one who is persuaded that he has re­ceiv'd an injury counterballanceable thereto, is not sufficient to remove out of his disaffected mind the me­mory of the offence; especially when the benefit comes at such a time, as that it seems rather occasion'd by necessity, than to proceed from good will.


THE Counsels and secret designs of Princes are most commonly divulg'd after a manner much diffe­rent from that which is true in ef­fect; and this they do purposely to amuse the Generality, that they may busy themselves in discoursing of one thing, while another of diffe­rent nature is in agitation.


PEace is desirable and holy, when it smothers all distrusts and jea­lousies, when it gives a check to all dangers, and when men are exone­rated from all charges, and may re­pose themselves without the least fear of disturbance. But when it hatches the contrary effects, it is a pernicious War, under the counter­feit title of peace, and a pestilent poison under the name of a good Medicine.


AMbassadors are the Eies and Ears of States, and the other pub­lick Ministers are the Spectacles of the respective Princes by whom they are employed.


MEns favours are to be measur'd by the real effects, and not by [Page 90] the external demonstrations thereof▪ and yet it can hardly be imagin'd how great a satisfaction it is to a man, to be treated with the ceremo­nious part of courtesy and humanity▪ The reason of it may possibly be this, that every one is apt to think, that he deserves more than he receives, and consequently is disgusted when he perceives there is not that ac­count made of him which he thinks due to him.


SUbjects cannot be well govern'd without the exercise of some se­verity at certain times, yet is there a necessity that it should be season'd with a dextrous insinuation of its being not so much the inclination of the Prince to be severe, as that it is requisite for the publick good, that the reformation of some should be occasion'd by the punishments in­flicted upon others.


A Man should endeavor to refrain from whatever may cause the least dissatisfaction or prejudice to another. It is consequent therefore, that he should never say any thing either in a mans presence, or his ab­sence, which may displease him, un­less there be some necessity of his so doing; in regard it is the greatest extravagance in the world, for a man to make a needless creation of Enemies to himself.


HE who runs himself into a dan­ger without ever considering, of what concern it is likely to be, may be accounted a person of a be­stial humour. But he who knows the importance of it, and yet freely exposes himself thereto, either upon the necessity there is of so doing, or upon some honourable account, must [Page 92] a person of great courage, and true­ly magnanimous.


IT is a vulgar errour to affirm, that Learning and Study are prejudi­cial to the Brain; though perad­venture it might be truly said of some one, who has a weak Brain, and is of an infirm constitution; but where there is a conjunction of a good constitution, and the acciden­tal good of Learning, it makes a most accomplish'd person, and of an excellent Temperament.


THat glory is to be accounted vain which is purchas'd with any injury done to another; but the true, solid, and immortal glory is that which consists not in the ruining of Nations, and destruction of Ci­ties, but rather in the consolidation of Kingdoms, the association of [Page 93] Provinces, the settlement of pub­lick tranquillity, the establishment of Commerce, and the deliverance of people out of the miseries and calamities attending humane nature.


ALL the fruit and advantage of having obtain'd a victory con­sists in knowing how to use it, and it is a greater infamy not to know how to use it, than not to have gain'd it; in regard it is more igno­minious for us to be deceiv'd in those things that are within our power, than in those that are not.


INconsiderate and doubtful delibe­rations are not excusable in any but those whose concerns are in a distracted and unfortunate po­sture, or in a person whose thoughts are wholly bent upon Ambition, and one who being desirous by all [Page 94] the ways imaginable to get himself a greater name, is afraid he has not time enough to do it in.


ALL humane actions are subject to many dangers; but this is the advantage of wise men, that they know that what ever may hap­pen does not always come to pass, but that upon some occasion or o­ther many dangers become none at all, many are stav'd off by prudence and industry; and many are wea­ther'd out by patience and equani­mity.


HE who is more apprehensive of the future than he ought to be, must not expect to be accounted a wise man, nor yet they who presup­pose for certain the dangers that are but doubtful, and accordingly re­gulate all their deliberations, as if [Page 95] the danger were inevitable. But it argues a certain magnanimity in that person, who knowing and through­ly considering the dangers, yet dis­covers how that many times, either by some unexpected chance, or by the assistance of Vertue, men extri­cate themselves out of great difficul­ties and inconveniences.


IT happens sometimes, that when a Prince assumes thoughts of ag­grandizing himself, or growes jea­lous of losing his Dominions, he takes occasion to forget what obli­gations may ly upon him for bene­fits receiv'd. A remarkable instance of this kind of demeanor we find in Lewis Sforza, who instead of ex­pressing his gratitude to Charles VIII. of France, for the kindnesses he had receiv'd from him, contributed his assistance for the driving of him out of Italy, and sided with his enemies, [Page 96] and all only to preserve his own Concerns, and out of the apprehen­sion he had of the greatness of Charles.


IN the giving and receiving of ad­vice there are many things to be considered, but principally two, to wit, prudence in him who is to re­ceive the advice, and fidelity in him who is to give it. For counsel be­ing nothing else but a discourse con­sider'd and weigh'd by reason, in order to a discovery whether a thing ought to be done or not, if the person who is to receive the advice be not prudent, he will not accept of that which is given him for the best, but will follow that, which, accord­ing to his apprehension, seems most convenient; in as much as not being prudent, he will be apt to fancy those things that are most inconve­nient, and so will never set himself [Page 97] seriously to work as he should do. On the other side, he who gives the advice, it he be not faithful, will find so many ways to disguise the truth, that many times that is put in execution, which is more beneficial to the Consultee, than to the Con­sultor.


HE who intends to engage in a war ought to be alwaies prepar'd, and to have his mind fortify'd against whatever event may happen, and to be ready to entertain all occurrences; and he should principally bethink himself not to enter into a war un­justly, and consider well against what Potentate he is to be concern'd, what allyances and combinations may be made against him, and lastly ex­amine his own forces and those of his Adversary, and what confede­rates either party may have.


THE ambition of a General often proves pernicious to the State by which he is employ'd. For it is the ordinary humour of such persons to be backward in putting a period to the War, even when they may do it with honour and advan­tage, that they may continue longer in their charges, and by that conti­nuance they gain the affections of the Soldiery, and so are in a fair way to their assumption of Soveraignty. He who has a powerful Army at his devotion has the command of all as far as that can extend its Quarters.


ARE men desirous of coming in­to great repute and esteem? Let them be always careful of doing those things which are commend­able and of good report; inasmuch as vertuous actions are not the effects [Page 99] of honour, but honour is the effect and recompence of vertuous actions.


IT is generally acknowledg'd by all, that the Government of a Country by one single person, when he is but tolerably good, is better than that of a greater number, though it be granted that they also are good. And it may be withal rationally con­cluded, that in a greater number of Govenours there may be a greater likelihood of degeneration from the principles of Government, and a greater combination of Tyranny, than there can be in one individual person.


TO frame instructions for the par­ticular benefit of every one, is a very difficult task; but it is much more difficult to put such a project in execution; in regard that men [Page 100] know well enough what they ought to do, but they are extreamly back­ward in applying themselves to the performance thereof. Let him there­fore who thinks that application in­cumbent upon him, endeavour to of­fer a certain violence to his own disposition, and make that habitual which yet admits of no greater per­fection than that of desire; by which means, he will easily attain whatever shall be taught him, and will voluntarily do any thing, ac­cording as reason shall command him, or experience direct him.


THE acquisition of a great Estate or Honour is a thing commen­dable, provided it be done without fraud or any indirect means; yet so great is the corruption of man­kind, that men commonly are am­bitious of high titles, and magistracy, as if they were illustious and magni­ficent [Page 101] of themselves, and did not derive their true value and esteem, from the vertue of those who are deservedly advanc'd thereto.


A Military Commander ought so to mind all things as if he had not charg'd any person with the care thereof; and this, not only out of the distrust he should have that his commands may not be punctually executed, but also out of this con­sideration, that his Soldiers will be more forward to execute his orders, when they shall find him so labori­ous and vigilant himself.


HE who would prognosticate what will be the effects of ano­ther mans deliberation, ought, to avoid being deceiv'd, to consider seriously, not only what a prudent person would be inclin'd to do upon [Page 102] the like emergency, but also to measure the abilities and disposition of the deliberator.


A Physician who undertakes to cure the infirmity of some par­ticular member, is very careful that the medicine he applies does not pre­judice any other member: so ought that privy Councellor, who is to ad­vise his Prince, to be so his remem­brancer of the concerns of the Com­monwealth, as that he is withal mindful of the honour and preser­vation of the Prince.


THere is not any man of so weak abilities, but that he may ma­nifestly perceive the difference there is between actions proceeding from fear and errour, and those which proceed from fraud and an evil in­tention.


HE who knows in himself what is advantageous, and for the good of the Commonwealth, and yet forbears communicating it to others, is an insignificant member of that Body.


A Commander may make a re­treat upon two occasions, either out of timorousness, or prudence; the former whereof is reproachable, the other deserves commendation, in regard it seems to wave the hazard­ing of what is not sufficiently se­cur'd. That victory is the most advan­tageous and most glorious, which is gain'd with the least loss and effusion of the Souldiers blood.


AS the Soul, which ordinarily ought to be the Governess of [Page 104] the Body, becomes a Tyrant, when, regarding only her own excellency, in comparison of the Body, she so thinks of her self, as not to allow any part of time for the service of the body, whereby the latter is weakned, and rendered uncapable of performing its offices: So, on the contrary, they who make the Body Lord over the Soul, and em­ploy their whole time in satisfying the appetites thereof, without reser­ving some part for the other, can ne­ver become vertuous, nor have any valour in themselves.


AVarice is, no doubt, much more blameable in a Prince, than in a private person; not only upon this score, that the Prince having more to distribute, frustrates men of the benefits they expect from him, but also in regard, that whatever the private person hath, he may dispose [Page 105] thereof without any others being much concern'd in it. But whatever the Prince has, he has chiefly for the benefit of others; what therefore he retains to himself is so much de­ducted out of what men should re­ceive from him.


PRinces have cause to be more distrustful than other persons, not only in regard they are many times flatter'd, but also that many doubtful advertisements are propos'd to them, and that it is a difficult mat­ter for them to follow those that are most advantageous to their concerns.


THat Prince who has the most ob­liging way to gain the affecti­ons of his People, makes a great discovery of an excellent good na­ture, and withal gives a certain demonstration of his being uncharge­able [Page 106] with the vice of Pride, which brings an odium upon the vertues themselves.


WHen any of the Enemies forces fall off from him, and come into thy service, it is no small hap­piness if they prove faithful to thee; inasmuch as the forces of the enemy are much more weakned, by the de­fection of those who desert him, than by the loss of those who are kill'd, though the name of turn­coat, or fugitive be suspicious in new-rais'd men, and odious in old Souldiers.


IN military concerns; the prospe­rous success of the victorious Prince proceeds for the most part from the want of Counsel and Con­duct in the Enemy. And thence it comes, that it is a difficult task to [Page 107] subdue him who knows the extent of his own forces and those of his Enemy. Besides, the performances of the Souldiery are to be attributed more to their gallantry than to their multitude, and sometimes the ad­vancement they make depends more on the advantages of the place, where the engagement happens, than upon their personal valour.


MEN, Armes, Mony, and Pro­visions are the sinews of War; but of these four, the two former are the most necessary, in regard that resolute men, well Arm'd, will make a shift to find mony and pro­visions; but those two last will not so easily find Men and Arms.


WHen the Prince is surrounded by his familiar friends in a time that requires nothing of action, [Page 108] he communicates his favours to those who are most acceptable to him, and most complyant with his humour. But when he has some great design to carry on, he knows how to make a distinction between those who are purely favourites, and such as may be more serviceable to him.


A Person reputed to be of great conduct and well experienc'd in the management of affairs, who can maintain ten thousand men, is more to be fear'd and esteem'd than ten others confederated together with each of them five thousand men; in regard they are tedious and dilatory in the concerting of their designes, and much time is com­monly lost ere they can be unani­mously brought to resolve upon the same end.


THat person who is desirous to be entertain'd into the service of some Grandee, should rather pitch upon one of some repute for his pru­dence, than one notorious for his ignorance: in regard that if his de­pendence be on a wise man, he will find means to ingratiate himself in­to his favour; but with an ignorant man, his applications will in all likelihood prove ineffectual, by reason of the want of apprehension in the person to whom they are made.


THE affairs of this world are in a perpetual fluxe of uncertainty and instability; yet are they always in a progressive course towards the end to which they ought to tend ac­cording to their nature. But this progress meets with greater ob­structions [Page 110] than we imagine, in regard that we measure their motion ac­cording to our life, which is of no great duration, and not according to their continuance, which seems long to us in respect of our selves. And thence it comes, that the judgements which we make of them are commonly false and de­fective.


IN things of importance, he who does not take into his consideration all the particulars relating thereto, cannot frame a right judgement of them; in re­gard that any single circumstance, how inconsiderable soever it be, may change the whole face of the thing which is to be judg'd. Yet true it is, that many times, a man may frame a good judgement there­of, though he have the knowledge but of the affair, only in general; [Page 111] and on the contrary, he who knows the particulars may be guilty of a greater miscarriage; in regard that if his head be not clear, and disen­gag'd from passion, his attention to the particular part will confound and disturb his apprehension of the whole matter under consideration.


IT is a great felicity for a man to see his Enemy cast down and lying at his mercy; but the greater his happiness is, to whom that happens, the greater reason he has to make a commendable use of that victory, by expressing his clemency and rea­diness to forgive, it being the par­ticular mark and property of a great and generous soul.


AN inferiour Prince ought not to hazard all he has in one fight; for if he get the better, he only [Page 112] gains the more glory; if he mis­carries, he is ruin'd to all intents and purposes.


WE find that in the ordinary differences which happen be­tween men upon the civil account, and in the diseases whereto men are subject, the Judges and Physicians have recourse to the judgements of those who have been anciently emi­nent in those several Professions; The same may be said of affairs of State and Policy, that it were expe­dient the present Statesmen consul­ted the directions of the Ancients, who have been eminent for the good Government and civilization of such as were subject to them.


THere are many who seem to be highly diligent in the reading of ancient Histories, and to take a [Page 113] particular divertisement therein, by reason of the remarkable variety of accidents which occur; but few ap­ply themselves to the imitation thereof; and that with the greater reproach to themselves, in that they think it a thing not only difficult, but also indeed impossible; as if the Heavens, the Sun, and the Elements had chang'd their motions, order and influences, in comparison of what they were heretofore.


THE Friendship there is between persons of quality, of a pri­vate condition, proceeds from the mutual correspondence of their minds, and the consonancy of their humours and dispositions. But a­mong Princes, this correspondence of humours does not always beget amity, but sometimes, out of a cer­tain judgement which they frame to themselves, of the advantages ac­crueing [Page 114] by the contraction of such Friendships, and sometimes their confederations are the effects of the present exigences forcing them thereto.


ADversity is the Touch stone which distinguishes between those who are friends out of design, and those who are really such. It makes a full discovery of the fideli­ty and constancy of some, and how slight and superfluous others may be. So that a man has this benefit by ad­versity, that there are driven from him, without the help of a Staff, all that throng of persons whose souls are mercenary and of no va­lue, full of avarice and ingratitude, and there remain behind only those minds which are fortune proof, and such as cannot be surmounted by Adversity.


HE who founds a Commonwealth, and establishes Laws for the go­vernment thereof, ought to have presuppos'd that men are inclin'd to wickedness, and will make a dis­covery of that inclination, upon any occasion that shall offer it self. And when the malignity lies con­ceal'd for some time, it proceeds from some secret cause, which, for want of having seen the experience of the contrary, was not observ'd; but it is afterwards discover'd by time, which brings all things to light.


NEutrality, of its own nature, is full of danger, in as much as it gives offence, on the one side, to the stronger party, who expected to be sided withal upon the score of his grandeur, and on the other to the [Page 116] weaker, who takes it unkindly, and thinks it an injury that he is not assist­ed and reliev'd. So that the neutral party is neither secur'd against an enemy, on the one side, nor pre­serves a firiend, on the other.


AS long as a Prince continues in a neutral condition, every one endeavours to caress him, & to draw him to his party, and consequently he is honour'd, and not only enjoys his neutrality in quietness, but also makes an advantage of it by the pre­sents he receives from those who would lure him into their Allyance; whereas if he has once declar'd himself, he has lost the satisfaction of being a spectator of the diffe­rence, and one of the contending parties must look upon him as an enemy, though the reasons and mo­tives he had to appear against him be never so plausible.


IT is a hard question to decide, whe­ther be the more ambitious person, he who is desirous to keep what he is possess'd of, or he who endeavours to make new Conquests. For ma­ny times great alterations are caus'd by him who is peaceably possess'd, in regard the fear of losing begets in such persons the same inclinati­ons, which they have who would conquer. Nay sometimes, he who is possess'd does not think himself secure, if he be not always in a readi­ness to make new acquests, and to do that, there is a necessity of ha­ving forces, and those must be in action, answerably to the ambitious desires of those by whom they are maintain'd.


THose who are entrusted with the administration of publick of­fices, [Page 118] or the government of Provinces ought to have these three con­ditions; to wit, That they have [...] tenderness and affection for those who are under their jurisdiction; that they be invested with sufficient authority to constrain, where it is re­quisite; and that they be persons re­markable for their justice and valour. But with this precaution into the bargain, that they who are advanc'd to the Government of others be such as have been in their younger days govern'd and directed by others.


IN all the resolutions of this world, there is an intermixture of good and evil; God having so order'd it, that men might be the more sensible of the imperfection of their present state. But it is the part of a prudent person to counter­ballance the good and evil, and to embrace that resolution wherein [Page 119] he finds either less evil, or more good.


SInce man is to look on his own good and preservation as his main concern, he ought not in rea­son to be tax'd with any inconstan­cy, when upon the vicissitude of human affairs, he also admits some change in his designs and pro­cedure, yet continuing constant and resolute as to the end he had pro­pos'd to himself. And this is but to follow the example of good Pi­lots, who being bound for such a Port, yet upon alteration of wind and weather seem to change their course, but still in the midst of the tempest they mind the prosecution of their voyage, and the preserva­tion of the Vessel.


GOod Souldiers require a good Captain, he being the guide of all, and the success or miscarriage of a design depending on his action and conduct. Thence came the Greek Proverb, that an Army of Deer having a Lyon in the head of it, is more terrible than an Army of Lyons headed by a Deer. But it is however requisite, that both Com­manders and Souldiers should be good, that it may not happen as Caesar said going against Pompey, that he went against a Captain without Souldiers; and afterwards going against Afranius that he was to en [...] ­gage an Army without a Captain.


THere are four sorts of men who are always mention'd with ho­nour. First, they who have been highly successeful in the establishment [Page 121] and promotion of true Religion. Secondly, those who have been the founders of States and Kingdoms, and setled the Government thereof by good Laws. Thirdly, they who have been Successors to the last men­tion'd, and have made great dila­tations of the Empires which they found so established. And lastly, per­sons who have been great Promotors of Literature, and Patrons of learned men. On the contrary, the teachers of a false Religion or destroyers of the true, the disturbers of Go­vernment, and the enemies of Learn­ing and Vertue, have been, through all ages, infamous and detestable.


A People which hath been accu­stomed to live in servitude, being left to their own liberty, may be likened to a Beast that has been kept in a Park, which having once got out of it, will be continually mis­chievous, [Page 122] till at last it be either de­stroy'd or brought into its former restraint.


WE ought to be very moderate and cautious in the commen­dations of persons. For as it is na­tural for any one, to resent his being disparag'd, so, on the contrary, ex­cessive, commendation (besides the hazard it implies of his judgement who commends, and the greatness of his merit who is commended) is many times offensive to him who hears it. That portion of self love, which every one has, even though he is not sensible of it, makes us im­mediately apply to our selves the commendations and discommenda­tions which we hear given to others, and confequently we imagine our selves concerned therein, though they are not purposely directed to us.


WHen the Prince has fortify'd himself with the allyances of excellent Captains, valiant Soul­diers, Arms, Mony, and strong places, his next work must be to weaken the Forces, and to defeat the designes of the Enemy; and that is done more slowly or with greater expedition, according as occasion offers it self, which is the source of every great and transcendent action.


IT seldom happens, that a ver­tuous man will be ambitious of soveraignty by indirect ways, though his aim therein may be good; and that a wicked person being once become great, will ever use that authority well, which he has attain'd by evil courses.


THough a Successor in Government be not fully so remarkable for his vertue as the person whom he succeds, yet may he maintain the state in the same grandeur he found it, by the vertue of his Predecessor, and make his advantage of the o­thers labours. But if it happen that he does not live long, and that he be again succeeded by one that does not follow the footsteps of the former, such a State must needs degenerate. So, on the contrary, if two persons, both eminent for the greatness of their vertue, hap­pen to be immediate Governours of the same Province, they commonly do great things, and give a smart stroke to the firm establishment of their Government.


II is a thing out of all contro­versy, that if there be not Soul­diers where there are men enough, it proceeds from some defect in the Prince, and not from that of Na­ture, or the situation of the Coun­try, or genius of the Inhabitants. And thence it comes, that wise Princes keep up the exercise of War even in the times of peace.


IN a well-regulated Common­wealth, the good Services and merits of Citizens shall make no plea for their Crimes, if they be of any importance. For rewards be­ing appointed for well doing, and punishment for miscarriages, it is an aggravation of their lapses who have done well, that they have done so, and therefore if they do amiss, there is no account made [Page 126] of their former vertuous demeanour.


HE who would reform. a City, to the general satisfaction of all its Inhabitants, should en­deavour what he can to retain the ancient Customs, and that course of life which the people was tradi­tionally inclin'd to, that it may not seem to the Generality, that there is any alteration in the Government, though really there be, and that the constitution thereof is a quite diffe­rent thing from what it was before. For it is the humour of the Popu­lace, to be contented and layd a­sleep with that which seems, as much as with that which really is; and many times there are greater di­sturbances occasion'd by that which seems to be, than there are by that which really is.


THE vice of Ingratitude pro­ceeds either from avarice, or distrust. When therefore a Prince or State sends out a General upon some important expedition, and the other growes highly into repute thereby; such a Prince or State is oblig'd to acknowledge and recom­pence the service done them. But if, on the contrary, they dishonour or affront him, avatice prompts him to commit some inexcusable fault, and so he brings himself into perpetual infamy.


AMbition has so great an influence over the heart of man, that it keeps a perpetual possession thereof. The reason of it is, that mans dis­position being naturally inclin'd to desire all things, and his de­sires always excessively surmounting [Page 128] the means of obtaining them, proves a continual occasion of discontent and repining. Thence proceeds the variety of mens conditions, inas­much as their labouring to augment, and the fear of losing what they are possess'd of, occasions Quarrels, Animosities, and Wars, and those are the fore-runners of the ruine of one Province, and the aggrandiza­tion of another.


THat Prince who would keep up his Estate in a flourishing con­dition, will not only be careful in the removing of present scandals, but also use his utmost industry in pro­viding against such as may happen. In regard that if he make timely provision against them, they are easily reform'd; whereas if the evil be grown up to a head, the remedy comes too late.


IT is not to be admir'd, that those Princes who are very powerful and have a numerous issue should have their thoughts much bent upon War; and that, either out of a motive of honour, or to make pro­vision for their progeny, by Mili­tary Employments, or forreign Go­vernments, if they have Colonies in remote parts of the world; or lastly to prevent the disturbances which may be occasion'd by the dif­ferent pretensions of younger Bro­thers.


THE wise servant ought to imi­tate the excellent Physician, and foresee what he should hope or fear, neither hoping nor fearing more or less than is convenient, so that he may always know whether his hope be in its augmentation, or at [Page 130] its full height, or in its declining state, and accordingly prognosti­cate what he is to expect. Being thus precaution'd, he will have his Judgment as it were in his hand, not suffering it to be heightned by hope, or to be depress'd by fear: and so he will prudently manage the Affairs of his Master, whose advan­tage. he minds equally with his own repute, in the Negotiation wherein he is employ'd.


PLato would have the devoir of a good Citizen to consist in these four things; to wit, that he should be prudent in diserning well what is most conducive to the common good, as well as to things present, as to come; that he be just, in di­stributing to every one what is due to him; that he be vertuous, in sur­mounting the fear which commonly obstructs he exercises of vertue; [Page 131] and lastly, that he have an absolute soveraignty over his affections.


THE shortest and surest way for Princes to make a mutual disco­very of their different designes, is that of Ambassadors, especially if they be persons of great repute either upon the score of the Grandeur of their Masters, or that of their own Vertue. For it being their business to treat always with great persons, and diligently to weigh the actions, deportment, words, and advices of those with whom they negotiate, and also those of the Prince himself, they from the present conjuncture of affairs infer what is most likely to come to pass afterwards.


WHen men propose to them­selves the doing of some thing of great importance, they ought, [Page 132] with all the industry they can, pre­pare themselves for it, that when opportunity offers it self, they may be ready to put their design in ex­ecution. When therefore all the preparatives are cautiouslly made, there should be no discovery made thereof till the opportunity of action does it; and then if there be a neg­lect in the execution, it argues that the persons concern'd therein were not sufficiently prepar'd, or wanted courage to carry it on.


DIstributive Justice in a political Government ought to be re­gulated according to Geometrical proportion, to wit, according to the quality of persons: otherwise, it is not justice: as we see, that infamy to a person of mean extraction a­mounts to little, but to one nobly descended, it is the most indigestible punishment. That Magistrate there­fore [Page 133] who proceeds to the cognizance of merits and miscarriages, favours and disgraces, by the same measure, not considering the diversity there may be between some persons and others, according to their several qualifications, is defective in the understanding of his duty; in re­gard, that persons of noble birth are discourag'd by the ignominy of being reduc'd to an equal rank with their inferiours, and those, of the meaner sort, finding themselves treated as persons of better extra­ction, grow thereby the more inso­lent and insupportable.


WHen the Forces of a Prince are regulated by prudence and conduct, they do admirable things, securing his own concerns, and those of his friends, causing confu­sion and astonishment to his enemies.


IT may easily be observ'd by a person who shall examine things present with a reflection on the past, how that in all Cities, and a­mong all Nations, there are now the same inclinations, and the same humours, as were heretofore. So that it is no hard matter, for such an Examiner, from the things past, to foresee what may happen in any Commonwealth, and consequently that Prudence advises the practising of the same remedies which were used by the Ancients. But in regard those considerations have either been neglected, or not fully comprehend­ed by such as read, or if they have been read, they have not been un­derstood by those who govern, it follows, that the same scandals and misgovernments happen at all times.


THE only way to make a City flourish is to use all possible en­deavours to supply it with Inhabi­tants; and that is done either by love or force. 'Tis done by the for­mer, when the ways to it are free and secure to strangers who are de­sirous to make their habitations there; by the latter, when the neighbouring places are destroy'd, and the Inhabitants thereof obliged to transplant themselves thither.


A Small Republick cannot safely be possess'd of a City that is stronger and greater than it self. For otherwise its case would be like that of a Tree, whose branches being too weighty for its boal, weaken it so that the first blast of wind lays it on the ground.


A Prince or Republick should sub­mit to any terms rather than have recourse to that Nation from which it hath assistance. For there cannot be a more plausible occasion for a Prince or Republick to possess themselves of a City or Province, than when they send their Forces for the defence thereof.


OF all Estates that is the most mi­serable, whether it be the case of a Prince or Republick, when they are reduc'd to such extremities, that they can neither accept of a Peace, nor carry on a War. Such is the condition of those who on the one side are over-crush'd by the conditions that are proffer'd them of a peace, and on the other being ob­lig'd to continue the War, are forc'd to become a prey either to those [Page 137] who are their Auxiliaries, or to their Enemies.


THE welfare of a Government consists in this that the subjects be so kept in, as that they have not the power, nor any reason to make a disturbance. And this is done, either by making all secure in depriving them of the means of doing evil, or gratifying them so well, as that they may not have any plausible reason to desire a change of Government.


THE Prince who is set upon by another greater than himself, can hardly commit a greater er­rour than to refuse all overtures of accommodation, especially when they are offer'd him; in regard that what is proffer'd cannot be so in­considerable but that some advan­tage [Page 138] accrewes to him who accepts of it, and is consider'd as part of a victory obtain'd by him.


AMong the marks whereby it may be known what conditi­on a State is in, we are to consider the correspondence there is between it and its neighbours. For when it is so govern'd, as that its Neigh­bours to gain its friendship become its Pensionaries, it is a certain ar­gument that such a State is in a flourishing condition: but when the neighbours that are inferiour to it, are as so many Suckers thereto, perpetually draining its Exchequer, it is a great sign of weakness or want of conduct, or corruption in the Government.


MEN in their actions, especi­ally those of importance, ought [Page 139] to consider, what is most convenient to be done, and to accommodate themselves to the present conjun­cture; for they who either through an unfortunate election, or out of a mutinous humour can admit of no acquiescence with the present time, live for the most part in a wretched condition, ever repining, and vainly expecting a change of affairs.


THat some men are successful in their undertakings, and others not, it is to be attributed to their complyance or discomplyance with the time proper for the execution thereof. Thence is it that we say some men proceed in their actions inconsiderately, and as if they were surprized, while others do nothing without a previous circumspection and scrutiny into all the particulars that may occur in their deport­ment.


THat Commander who would have a City obstinately defend it self, or an Army once engag'd to fight it out to the last man, ought above all things to insinuate into them a persuasion of the necessity there is of fighting.


THE wise Chieftain who propo­ses to himself the conquest of a Country or Province, ought to measure the difficulties he may meet withal, by considering the Necessity, which may force the Inhabitants of the Country to defend themselves, answerably to the greatness of the necessity in those who are to defend themselves against him, to make ac­count that his expedition will be more or less difficult.


AMong other points of Military Discipline, a wise Captain ought to be especially careful, what per­sons they are who take the word from him; and to take order that his Souldiers believe not any but their own Officers, who are not like­ly to say any thing to them but what they are entrusted withal. For want of a punctual observance of this point, incredible disorders have ma­ny times happen'd.


IN a Military expedition, it is much better to send one single person, though endu'd but with ordinary prudence, than two toge­ther, though very valiant persons, invested with equal authority.


SOme Cities and Provinces, which have held out against all extremi­ties of War, have been reduc'd by some extraordinay example of ge­nerosity, humanity, or chastity. Of this there are many examples in the Roman Histories.


HE who is over-earnestly desirous of being lov'd, if he exceed ever so little in the artifices of insinuating himself, becomes contemptible; and, on the contrary, he who is over desirous to be fear'd, if he exceeds the true measure, becomes odious. He who can observe a mean in these procedures must be a person of a great and exemplary vertue.


THE only way to avoid the in­famy or danger which is conse­quent [Page 143] to the giving of counsel, is, to take things moderately, to give ad­vice without passion, and to defend it with modesty; So that the Prince or City, who receives and follows the advice may do it voluntarily, and not seem to be over-sway'd by the importunity of him who is con­sulted.


THE wise Captain who has to do with a new Enemy, whose reputation is great, should make a previous tryal of his Souldiers, by small engagements with the Enemy, before he comes to the hazard of a pitch'd Battel, to the end that by such prelusory skirmishes there may be an abatement made of that ter­rour, which the noise and reputati­on of such an Enemy might have rais'd in them.


TO use Stratagems and circum­ventions upon all other occa­sions, raises a dislike of the person using it; but in Military concerns it is otherwise, in so much, that he who subdues his enemy by a strata­gem, is as highly commended, as he that does it by force.


A Resolution taken up with too much precipitancy, or an over earnest affection, proves for the most part unfortunate. The former al­lowes not the time to ruminate on the things which are to be conside­red; the latter takes up the mind so, that it heeds not any thing but what immediately press upon it.


A Man is much more concern'd at a pleasure or dipleasure newly done him, than he is at a signal kindness, which he had re­ceiv'd some considerable time be­fore. Thus a mans immediate exi­gences make a much greater impres­sion upon him, than either the re­membrance of that which is past, or the foresight of that which is to come.


BEsides many other misfortunes which must attend a Prince who is neligent in the affairs of War, these two are most obvious, to wit, that he cannot be respected by the Souldiery, nor repose any trust in them. To remedy this, there are two expedients; one relating to the Body, the other to the Mind. The former requires the following [Page 146] of the noblest and most generous sort of exercises, such as hunting, where­by his person is enur'd to the support­ing of all inconveniencies, and he is enabled to observe the advantages and situation of places. The latter consists in the reading of Histories, and, in them, reflecting on the acti­ons of excellent men, and how they demean'd themselves in their wars, examining the occasions of their Victories, or losses, and above all, in imitating those whose great Cha­racters Time has transmitted to us.


IT is greater wisdom for a man to be accounted poor, though some shame be consequent thereto, provid­ed he do not incurhatred or contempt, than to gain the title of a liberal per­son by rapine and injustice, which are ever attended by infamy and aversion.


HE who thinks to advance him­self by his dependence on a great Person, and is desirous to be employ'd by him, ought to keep as much as he can possibly in his pre­sence. For ever and anon, there happen occasions, wherein he recom­mends some affair to him who is next at hand, which he would not do, if the other were to seek: and he who misses the beginning of his advancement does many times for­feit his access to great things.


IN the particular accidents of War, Chance (which is commonly known by the name of Fortune) has a greater influence than in other hu­mane actions. For the different situ­ation of places, the advantages of encamping, the diversity of the air, diseases, want of mony, scarcity of [Page 148] provisions, spies, guides, false intel­ligence, the contrivances of publick Ministers, and divers other things occasion an infinite variety in the occurrences of War.


IT is more probable, that an expe­rienc'd Sea Commander, who has ben accustom'd to fight against winds, waves, and men, should make a good Captain at Land, where he has only men to deal withal, than that a Land-Captain should make a good Commander at Sea.


THose very persons, who attri­bute most to Vertue or Pru­dence, only that they might ex­clude what is attributed to For­tune, cannot deny but that it is an extraordinary chance, for any man to live and flourish at such time, [Page 149] when those Vertues are in esteem for which he is most recommen­dable, or to be concern'd in such an occasion, as where they are most necessarily to be practis'd.


THE Ministers and Favourites of Princes, if they are wise, ought to procure all the fair corre­spondence that may be between them and their neighbouring Princes, and withal to raise in them a tender­ness and affection for their sub­jects.


IT being every mans case at some time or other to stand in need of anothers assistance, where there is no precedent obligation upon the score of benefits receiv'd, nor any consideration of intimate friend­ship, or allyance, the person sol­liciting ought, for this reason, [Page 150] to make it appear, that such his request is of great advantage, or at least not any way prejudicial to him whom he expects liberally to grant his desire; then he is to make him sensible, how transcen­dently he will be oblig'd to him. And where he cannot urge any thing of this nature, he ought not to be disgusted, if he does not ob­tain what he desires.


IN all affaires, it is requisite first to use reason, and afterwards force. In military designes there­fore, it is of greater concern to set ambushes for the Enemy, than only to avoid his. The more a man governs himself by reason in any affair, the more he advantages himself.


A Man makes a greater complaint when an injury is done him contrary to reason, than when a violence is done him by force: for an injury has place between those who are otherwise equal in condi­tion; but force is a mark, that he who uses it is more powerful, than he on whom it is used.


WHen we prepare our selves to go against our Enemies, we should make account, that the pre­paratives on their side are as great as those on ours, not promising our selves any more success for the faults which we imagin they have committed, but rather presuposing, that having their senses, and judg­ment about them, they have pro­vided [Page 152] for their affairs, as well as we have done for ours.


A Wise man ought not to con­ceal the advantageous advice which he has to give his Coun­try, meerly out of the uncertain­ty there is of its being put in ex­ecution; for time will discover the integrity and prudence of him that gave the advice, and withal the temerity and extravagance of those who rejected it.


THough the act of Clemency should prove beneficial to the person by whom it is exercis'd, yet does it sometimes tend to his pre­judice. But this happens accord­ing to the subject on which it is exercis'd. For when it is done [Page 153] to a multitude, it proves so much the more beneficial, the more the obligation conferr'd thereby is mul­tiply'd, it being in a manner im­possible, that a numerous party having receiv'd a benefit, should conspire together to be ungrateful to so great a Benefactor; where­as one or few particular persons may be of so malignant a disposi­tion, as to fall, immediatly after the reception of a great kindness, into that horrid vice of ingratitude.


THE best way for a Captain to in­spire his Souldiers with an obsti­nate resolution of fighting, is, to put them out of all hopes of safety, otherwise than by fighting. And that resolution is augmented in them by the confidence they have of their Comanders experience, and the love they bear their Country. Divers [Page 154] other inducements may concur, but the most pressing consideration is that which forces them either to conquer, or dy.


THE accomplishment of every en­terprize is much more difficult than the beginning of it; since the latter may be the effect of some lucky accident, but the former re­quires resolution, experience, and conduct. Thus a Vessel may wea­ther out a Tempest at Sea, but when it comes near the Port, the Pilot shews the utmost of his skill by rea­son of the narrow passage into it.


IT is a great presumption, in any person, how much so ever he may imagine himself in favour with his Prince, to be over-forward in giving him advice. For the reflectons of Soveraigns being many times fixt upon things of a nature transcending the capacities of such as are about them, it happens, that they are se­cretly dissatisfy'd when they seem in some measure pleas'd. It is therefore the prudence of a Cour­tier, to be alwaies so cautious, in offering his advice, as that there may be a presumptive probability, of its not becoming prejudicial to the Offerer.


WHen a person, who thinks him­self in savour, is of a sudden discountenanc'd, he should not give the least admission to murmuring, disgust, or animosity; but, reflect­ing on what might be applicable to him, upon the score of miscar­riage, endeavour, by the arts of in­sinuation, and complaisance, to re­cover himself into his former station, in the Princes affections.


THere are two eminent requisites, in those, who are concern'd abroad, as publick Ministers. For, if they do not give evident proofs of their vigilance, sedulity, and suf­ficiency, in managing the Negoti­ations wherein they are entrusted, [Page 157] as also of their perspicacity, in fore­seeing what influence they may have on posterity, there is a great defici­ency in the discharge of the trust reposed in them.


THE main design of Govern­ment is prudentiallity carried on, and advanc'd, when there is an unanimity of counsels amongst those who have the administration of publick affairs. But when they are divided amongst themselves, and promote different interests, it argues a dangerous crisis.


GReat are the calamities consequent to War. The Treasury of the Prince is exhausted: Commerce is obstructed: and the devastations, committed in a short time, are not repair'd, without a subsequent Peace, of many years continuance. And such must needs be the condition of the many Countries, now the seat of the present War.


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