There are countless characters that Machiavelli
employs to demonstrate his assertions in The Prince. Yet a summary of these characters would be
long, tedious, and generally futile. The timeless value of The Prince lies not in its ability
to recount the lives of former princes, showing some to be good and others to be bad. Machiavelli's
political message is the main reason to read The Prince. Machiavelli offers a very unique, clearly
Renaissance-like view of political office. He is a realist, someone who sees politics not as they
should be, but as they are. Thus, his political framework is centered around this realization.
The most important characters in
The Prince are the characters that Machiavelli speaks little about-the Medici family of Florence.
In exile, Machiavelli wrote The Prince in efforts to be appointed a position in the Medici family, who
controlled Florence at the time. Unfortunately, the Medici family was unseated in 1527 when international
military confrontations upset the brief era of Medician peace. Though Machiavelli would die soon
after these events, The Prince would ultimately become the most famous literary work of the Renaissance.