Book Description: Bound in genuine leather and featuring 22kt gold accents; moiré fabric end-sheets, gilded page-ends, and a satin-ribbon page marker. Acid-free paper. Easton Press, leather bound, 1980. 185 pages, Illustrated by reproductions of renaissance art from museums. 8vo (9.5" x 6") The Prince, by Niccolo Machiavelli, translated by Hill Thompson, with a new preface by Irwin Edman. Part of the 100 Greatest Books Ever Written series.
The Prince is a political treatise by the Italian diplomat, historian and political theorist Niccolò Machiavelli. It was not published until 1532, five years after Machiavelli's death. This was done with the permission of the Medici pope Clement VII, but "long before then, in fact since the first appearance of the Prince in manuscript, controversy had swirled about his writings".
Although it was written as if it were a traditional work in the Mirror of Princes style, it is generally agreed that it was especially innovative. The Prince is sometimes claimed to be one of the first works of modern philosophy, especially modern political philosophy, in which the effective truth is taken to be more important than any abstract ideal. It was also in direct conflict with the dominant Catholic and scholastic doctrines of the time concerning how to consider politics and ethics.
Although it is relatively short, the treatise is the most remembered of his works and the one most responsible for bringing "Machiavellian" into wide usage as a pejorative term. It also helped make "Old Nick" an English term for the devil, and even contributed to the modern negative connotations of the words "politics" and "politician" in western countries. The descriptions within The Prince have the general theme of accepting that ends of princes, such as glory, and indeed survival, can justify the use of immoral means to achieve those ends.