Machiavelli's The Art of War

by Niccolò Machiavelli

Book cover for Machiavelli's The Art of War

Niccolò Machiavelli's The Art of War is essential reading for any student of military history, strategy, or theory. The format of 'The Art of War' was in socratic dialogue. It's purpose is "To honor and reward virtù, not to have contempt for poverty, to esteem the modes and orders of military discipline, to constrain citizens to love one another, to live without factions, to esteem less the private than the public good." To these ends, Machiavelli notes in his preface, the military is like the roof of a palazzo protecting the contents. The Art of War was first published in 1521 and was the only historical or political work printed during Machiavelli's lifetime.

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