People living under a good king will be willing to go to effort to keep him in power. We have records of enormous bribes, offices and territories representing tens of thousands of florins in annual income changing hands. Many of the claims may be outlandish, but neither historical facts nor the rule of plausibility can really help us quash them when the facts we do have are so exactly what we would expect if everything was true. 2000 - 2020 © Storia in Rete - A typical Handbook of Princes consisted of a mixture of anecdotes and advice.

The most notable achievements of his three year reign include a brief crusade, excommunicating Halley’s Comet when its bad luck interfered with his crusade (“Take that! Voldemort is a terrible, terrible person who randomly kills people who work for him. Everyone has a different goal. No communion or last rights for you, comet!”), and securing Cardinal’s hats for two of his nephews, including young Rodrigo. She was supposed to be one of the most beautiful ladies in the world, with blonde hair which fell past her knees, and a keen and well-trained intellect. These were not subtle takeovers but outright sieges, with the full brutality of Renaissance warfare. What was history supposed to think? “He was a very very, very very, very, very bad pope,” she concluded, and shooed her flock on.

Rodrigo now had one goal: permanently establish the Borgia as one of the great families of Europe. That must wait for the leisurely days of his exile. When Pier Luigi died, he bought one for the next son, Giovanni, and made Giovanni commander of the papal armies. The cities within the Papal States were governed by papal “Vicars,” i.e. Machiavelli, Leonardo & Borgia: A Fateful Collusion. And because God is part of politics in this age. So little did the actual people ruled by nobles matter to the aristocrats who owned them at the time that they decided to make him Duke of a region called Valentinois for the sole reason that, as Archbishop of Valencia, he was already nicknamed “Valentino”, and this way they wouldn’t have to change his nickname. A few want to be pope.

Providence has exalted tyrants before, and fools have followed them, many out of of fear. He renounced the Cardinalship, becoming the only man in history ever to do so. Think about it!) The saints will like and bless the good king, and drive plague from his kingdom. Leonardo’s reactions to his companions are less clear: Borgia is mentioned just once, in an aside, in his notebooks. Lucrezia was sleeping with her brothers. Eventually he married her to a bastard of the Sforza, the ruling family of Milan, then when the Sforza weren’t valuable enough wrangled an annulment (the Sforza objected fiercely: “You can’t do that! Every body found floating in the Tiber was their fault. The papal throne was indeed at its most politicized at this point, a prize tossed back and forth among various powerful Italian families and the odd foreign king, and Italy remains littered with the opulent palaces built with funds embezzled by families who scored themselves a pope. Resources: all the wealth, contacts, secrets, tax-returns and dirt he has accumulated in decades managing the papal purse. I cite this example because its simple appeal to human Reason (Evil is bad! His plan had been to establish his own princedom in the Romagna. No one in Florence has any incentive to do anything but love and support this government. And if you make me pope, I’ll be your buddy and do whatever you want.”, France: “Tempting… say, Naples is in Italy, right? Despite Leonardo’s later attempts to order his voluminous notebooks, nothing whatsoever came of this project except a comparatively brief treatise on painting (which was probably put together by his faithful assistant Melzi). The next morning, Cesare had departed, and Remirro de Orco was found in the town square of Cesena, having been sliced in half, with his gore-spewing entrails strewn across the decorative pavement. However, one particular source – referred to only as a ‘friend’ – was a combination of various informants, who observed intelligence and bits of gossip picked up here and there. Paul Strathern explains. These souvenir hunters had no conception of what Leonardo’s notebooks were about and regarded them merely as curiosities of genius. I want to tyrannize this stuff later.”, Savonarola: “Have you considered not crushing Florence?”, France: “Oh, I thought you Italians liked being crushed; my mistake.”  *gentle condescending head pat*, Machiavelli: “What the… that worked?!

How did that work?!? Cesare conquered the territory of Romagna (East/middle hunk of Italy), including the city of Cesena.

The threat of war with the Turk meant nothing to him.

But these were small things.

I can testify personally to the latter, since I have read some of the letters she wrote to her father from Milan at the age of fourteen, and the depth of her understanding of the European situation as she warns her father of political turmoil along Italy’s northern border certainly adds plausibility to the impossible competence of a lot of teen-aged young adult and anime protagonists. When his fifth papal election rolled around in 1492, he was nicely on track to be another mildly-entertaining, thoroughly-corrupt Renaissance pope. What a strange and marvelous age we live in.”, Giuliano della Rovere: “He’s also Spanish.”, Giuliano della Rovere: “Please invade Italy!”, Giuliano della Rovere: “To oust the evil Borgia pope and free Rome from corruption that isn’t mine! Once they tried giving it to Michelangelo to carry to him when he was en route to Rome, but even Michelangelo turned back in Cesare-ful times of banditry and chaos.

Instead, he intended to seize the papacy, declare himself pope and turn this office into a secular hereditary institution ruled by the House of Borgia. Certainly Petrarch and his followers, who were so desperate for peace and stability, would eagerly shower any virtuous prince with support and help, and very sincere loyalty.

Unfortunately, she was too valuable. What Alexander and Cesare made now was different. Paul Strathern explains. And, unlike his commanders, in a curious way he knew that he could trust Machiavelli, man to man: up to a point, that is.

As for Rodrigo Borgia, he has waited a long time. Alexander launched an intense investigation, then suddenly halted it after less than two weeks without any announcement of the result. The kids learned Catalan as well as Italian and French, not to mention Latin and Greek, since by 1480 humanism was sufficiently victorious that even a twelve-year-old bastard daughter of nobility received a healthy dose of  Homer.

I seem to remember my distant cousin being King of Naples…”, Ludovico Sforza: “Your Highness should totally invade Italy. They can’t leave until someone receives twelve votes and becomes pope. Good morning, Mr. Machiavelli. For obvious reasons, Machiavelli frequently made misleading remarks about the sources of his information in order to protect their identity. Cesare Borgia was both feared and loved. So even the untouchable noble house of Este fell into Borgia hands. 1378, d. 1458), was from Valencia in eastern Spain.

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