Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Machiavelli on Men of Ability

"A prince ought to show himself an admirer of talent, giving recognition to men of ability and honoring those who excel in a particular art. Moreover, he should encourage his citizens to ply their callings in peace, whether in commerce, agriculture, or in any other business. The man who improves his holdings should not be made to fear that they will be taken away from him; the man who opens up a branch of trade should not have to fear that he will be taxed out of existence. Instead, the prince should bestow prizes on the men who do these things, and on anyone else who takes pains to enrich the city or state in some special way."

Niccolo Machiavelli, The Prince, 1513

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