Machiavellianisms and governments in Portuguese America: two analyses of ideas and political practices

Rodrigo Bentes Monteiro, Vinicius Dantas

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This article describes two studies regarding political practices and ideas that are relevant to the context of Portuguese America and its possible relations with the opuscule The prince, by Niccolo Machiavelli. In the general government of the Count of Obidos (16631667), some similarities with the advisement written by the Florentine secretary can be observed. However, during the administration of the famous Count of Assumar, in the captaincy of Sao Paulo and Minas do Ouro (1717-1721), a document was produced, and its ideas of power are strongly associated with the classic culture. However, this was not a reason for its coauthor to be distant from the condemned renaissance author. Both cases indicate the pertinence of analyzing the ideas by Machiavelli in the scope of Portuguese monarchy and its literate culture, be it by the approximation between types of government or be it because of a strategy that probably aimed at dissimulating its inspiration.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages26
Issue number36
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Machiavellianism
  • Portuguese America
  • political practices and ideas

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