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Frederick the Wise compared to Machiavellia Principles Essay

Frederick the Wise, was one of the electors of Saxony during the Protestant Reformation (PR).He was one of the six electors whose job was to choose the new Holy Roman Emperor.When Martin Luther was exiled Frederick gave him a hideout.This act let Luther keep his movement going, and without him being there chances are the PR would not have happened at that time or ever.This also allowed Frederick to play both sides of the revolution.If the Protestants won, he could say he helped, and if the lost he could say he captured Luther.Frederick also remained Catholic; this gave him ties on both sides of the religious war.This was very cunning on Frederick's part.Machiavelli states that princes are most successful when they are crafty and are able to trick others, rather then strictly keeping their word.(Machiavelli XVIII)While Frederick was obviously a cunning man he was also a very honorable man.Being an elector meant he had many people offering him bribes.Pope Leo offered him a "Golden Rose", which was symbol on the highest favor.Fredrick had dismissed it.Frederick also helped Luther because he did not think it was right for him to be persecuted when he had done no real crime, not just for political reasons.Machiavelli says honor makes a person look good, if it does not interfere with being clever.(XVIII)Many of the characteristics people would normally consider good qualities, honor, morality, and kindness are good to have in Machiavelli's opinion, except when it gets in the way of increasing or maintaining rule.(XV)Frederick also should have angered the Pope extremely, and under normal circumstances would have probably been dealt with quickly and harshly.Machiavelli says it is important to avoid hatred from people, especially powerful people.(XIX)Frederick was kept safe however because Pope Leo wanted him to be the next Holy Roman Emperor.Even though Fredrick continually d…

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