Billeder på siden

ought to be the commodity and security of the subjects; as contrariwise, the tyrant seeketh his own private profit with the oppression of his people. Civium non serritus sed tutela tradita est. Sal.

To the perfection of every good prince, two things are necessarily required; viz. prudence and virtue ; the one to direct his doings, the other to govern his life. Reä eris si recte feceris. Hor.

The second care which appertaineth to a good prince, is to make his subjects like unto himself; for thereby, he is not only honoured, but they also the better governed. Facile imperium in bonos. Plaut.

Subjects are made good by two means; viz. by constraint of law, and the prince's example: for in all estates, the people do imitate those conditions whereunto they see the prince inclined. Quicquid faciunt principes, præcipere videantur. Quintil.

All virtues be required in a prince; but justice and clemency are most necessary: for justice is a habit of doing things justly as well to himself as others, and giving to every one so much as to him appertaineth. This is that virtue that preserveth concord among men, and whereof they be called good. Jus et æquitas vincula civitatum. Cic.

It is the quality of this virtue also to proceed equally and temperately. It informeth 'the prince not to surcharge the subjects with infinite laws : for

[ocr errors]




thereof proceedeth the impoverishment of the subjects and the enriching of lawyers *, a kind of men, which in ages more ancient, did seem of no necessity. Sine causidicis satis felices olim fuere futuræque sunt'urbes. Sal.

The next virtue required in princes is clemency, being an inclination of the mind to lenity and compassion, yet tempered with severity and judgment. This quality is fit for all great personages, but chiefly princes; because their occasion to use it is most. By it also, the love of men is gained. Qui vult regnare, languidå regnet manu. Sen.

After clemency, fidelity is expected in all good princes, which is a certain performance and observation of word and promise. This virtue seemeth to accompany justice, or is, as it were, the same; and therefore most fit for princes. Sanctissimum generis humani bonum. Liv.

As fidelity followeth justice, so doth modesty accompany clemency. Modesty is a temperature of reason, whereby the mind of man is so governed, as neither in action or opinion, he over-deemeth of himself, or any thing that is his—a quality not common in fortunate folk, and most rare in princes. Superbia commune nobilitatis malum. Sal.

* The author of the epistle dedicátory to the duchess of Suffolk, prefixed to Mr. Latimer's Sermons, saith, that lawa yers' covetousness hath almost devoured England.

This virtue doth also moderate all external demonstrations of insolence, pride, and arrogance, and therefore necessary to be known of princes, and other, whom favour or fortune have advanced. Impone fælicitati tuæ frænos, facilius illam reges. Curt.

But as princes are to observe the bounds of modesty, so may they not forget the majesty appertaining to their supreme honour, being a certain reverend greatness due to princely virtue and royal state a grace and gravity no less beseeming a prince, than virtue itself: for neither overmuch familiarity, nor too great austerity, ought to be used by princes. Facilitas autoritatem, severitas amorem minuit. Tac.

To these virtues we may apply liberality, which doth not only adorn, but highly advance the honour due to princes. Thereby also, the good will of men is gained: for nothing is more fitting a prince's nature, than bounty, the same being accompanied with judgment, and performed according to the laws of liberality. Perdere multi sciunt donare nesciunt. Tac.

It seemeth also that prudence is not only fit, but also, among other virtues, necessary in a prince: for the daily use thereof is in all human actions required ; and chiefly in matters of state and government. Prudentia imperantis propria et unica virtús. The success of all worldly proceedings doth shew that prudence hath compassed the prosperous event of human actions, more than force of arms or other power. Mens una sapiens plurium vincit manus. Eurip.

Prudence is either natural, or received from others : for whoso can counsel himself what is fit to be done, needeth not the advice of others; but they that want such perfection, and are nevertheless capable, and are willing to know what others inform, ought to be accounted wise enough. Laudatissimus est qui cuncta videbit, sed laudandus est is qui paret recte m nenti. Hesiod.

« 3. The Prerogative of Parliaments in England, proved in a Dialogue between a Counsellor of State and a Justice of Peace; dedi. cated to King James, and first printed at Middleburg, 4to, 1628.

« 4. A Discourse, touching a Match propounded by the Savoyan, between the Lady Elizabeth and the Prince of Piedmont ; written in 1611.

5. A Discourse, touching a Marriage between Prince Henry of England and a Daughter of Savoy ; written in 1611.

« 6. A Discourse, touching a War with Spain, and of the protecting of the Netherlands; addressed to James I. and first published, with two more discourses, by his grandson, Philip Ralegh, Esq. 8vo, 1702.

17. A Discourse, of the original and fundamental Cause of natural, arbitrary, necessary, and unnatural War; first printed in his Essays, Svo, 1650.

8. A Discourse, of the Invention of Ships, Anchors, Compass, &c.; the first Natural War ; the several Uses, Defects, and Supplies of Shipping; the Strength and Defects of the Sea Forces of England, France, Spain, and Venice; together with the five manifest Causes of the sudden appearing of the Hollanders ; an unfinished piece, first printed in his Essays, as above.

“9. Observations concerning the Royal Navy and Sea-service. Dedicated to Prince Henry, and first printed in his Essays, as above.

“ 10. Observations touching Trade and Commerce with the Hollander, and other Nations, presented to King James; wherein is proved that our sea and land commodities serve to enrich and strengthen other countries against our own; printed in 12mo, 1653.

« ForrigeFortsæt »