As such, Machiavelli offers the options of despoiling, restoring the freedoms or living with such liberties in the city. In this case, for the prince to be successful in asserting his authority, he has to reside in the city and apply the deception in assuming that people will embrace his ideals with time. However, if such people do embrace his ideals, then the king will live within them as he wishes. If not, then the prince will destroy the city in asserting his authority. This is further asserted when Machiavelli states that any prince or ruler of a free city, and who fails to destroy it, will certainly be destroyed in the city through rebellions in the name of liberty (Machiavelli, 18). In other words, honesty might be fatal for the new king. People may pretend to forget their liberties after a new prince takes over a city, but the truth is that they will certainly wake up to demand the liberties back, which would destroy the prince of the city. As such, a king who lives in such deception honestly believing people support him will be caught unaware as people libel against him. The answer to this, as Machiavelli counsels Lorenzo is that a prince has to animate the masses to find “he has laid foundations well ” (Machiavelli, 38), which might imply applying deception to endear himself to the masses while the truth is that the prince is only after protecting his power.Similarly in Boccaccio’s Decameron, the aspect of using deception and application of double standards is profound. In the beginning, Ciappelletto is presented as the most wicked man to have lived (Baccaccio, 26; he could cheat, steal and commit any other sin with no remorse. Later, Ciappelletto is remembered as a good and holy man who lived a devout life (Boccacio, 34). Ciappelletto lived through controlling others in his entire life and despite the people knowing with honesty that he was a filthy man, he again deceives a friar who venerates him as a saint, a reward for his deception. The people had believed in his confessions which they believed were honest and true, but little did they know he used deception to be venerated in religion. Another case of deception in religion was where Masetto was employed in a convent as a gardener with a secret role of satisfying nuns sexually. Though people held the convent with the respect it deserved for its religious significance, they people were living in deception as the nuns had extreme
Boccaccio, Giovanni. The Decameron. Trans. Mark Musa and Peter Bondanella. New York: Signet Classic, 1982.
Machiavelli, Niccolo. The Prince. Trans. Marriott W. K. 1515. http://www.constitution.org/mac/prince.pdf . Accessed 18th March, 2015.
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