Date of Graduation

5-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Degree Level

Undergraduate

Department

History

Advisor

Dominguez, Freddy

Reader

Muntz, Charles

Second Reader

Dowdle, Andrew

Third Reader

Engen, Mindy

Abstract

This paper attempts to reconsider the role that Christian religion played in the political philosophy of Niccolò Machiavelli, focusing specifically on The Prince. Despite regnant popular and scholastic opinion, this paper posits that Machiavelli's ideological foundation falls squarely into the theological and moral traditions and scripture of Christianity, and is thus an inseparable element of the political theory of Machiavelli. Further, this work seeks to illustrate the presence of orthodox political and religious beliefs contained within The Prince and throughout the Machiavellian corpus, focusing on the socio-political milieu of Renaissance Florence and the broader traditions of humanist thought. In doing so, this paper argues for a much more religiously-compatible understanding of Machiavelli and his political philosophy, even going so far as to place the Christian God at the center of his political advice in The Prince.