Niccolo Machiavelli, a politician, Italian historian, and a philosopher was born in Florence, Italy on May 3, 1469. He had little or no interest in philosophy as he believed that the role of philosophy in human analysis must be lesser than the real-world political apprehensions. His short book “The Prince” considered to be his masterpiece gained wide readership as the book contained some strong and real-world perceptions into human behavior and it also portrayed the negative view of human nature. The Prince is a mild disapproval that the rulers should be polite and principled in their character.
Machiavelli’s political philosophy intimately reflects his life, time and circumstances (Strathern, 3). Machiavellian is considered a negative term as the actions of this philosophy is harsh, dictatorial, cunning, and treacherous. Machiavelli argued that the good rulers must learn to be bad sometimes, and must set apart moral concerns of integrity, morality, and benevolence to preserve the strength of the state. Machiavelli disputed that the most effective rulers were not the ones who ruled according to the orders of the law or ethics, but those who are keen to do whatever was obligatory to maintain their own supremacy. Machiavelli's friends considered his philosophy as coherent, rigorous, and remarkably consistent over time (Benner, 44).
Machiavelli’s political philosophy was not evil in itself, it was just extremely realistic and the philosophy of statecraft that he put forward aimed at being scientific (Strathern, 4).
According to Machiavelli a leader must possess five crucial qualities to be a successful ruler. The first quality of a leader is to be feared than loved as the people who fear the leader are less likely to revolt, the second quality is that the leader must have good support of the people; the third quality is that the appearance of the virtue must be more important than the virtue itself. The fourth quality required by a leader is Intelligence, and the last and important quality is; the leader must be a good decision maker and not a threat to people.
Benner,Erica. Machiavelli's Ethics. Princeton University Press. (2009). Print
Strathern, Paul. Machiavelli: Philosophy in an Hour. HarperCollins (2012). Print