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Sunday Arts Magazine

2 Nov 2020

Famed author Tony Wildman talks to David about his two novels

Arts, Books, Literature

Famed author Tony Wildman talks to David about his two novels

MACHIAVELLI RE-IMAGINED
“The ends justifies the means”

In The Diplomat of Florence, the new novel by Anthony R Wildman, he tells the story
of the 16th century man who first expressed this idea – Niccolò Machiavelli.
In 1513, on a little farm just outside Florence, the washed-up former diplomat sat
down to write a kind of job application to the new Medici rulers of the city. In it, he
tried to distil all of the experience he had acquired in fifteen years of diplomatic
manoeuvring against the feared warlord Cesare Borgia.
Machiavelli’s letter eventually became one of the most famous books of political
philosophy ever published: The Prince. It was so shocking to his contemporaries that
the book was banned by the Church for its supposed immorality.
But how did this man, well read but otherwise undistinguished, come to produce
such a profoundly important work? The Diplomat of Florence tells how the young
Niccolò Machiavelli rose from obscurity to become his city’s leading diplomat, how
he fought a long duel against the ambitions of the Borgias, and how in the end he
fell from power.
Along the way, Niccolò has to deal with a military mutiny, try to influence the king of
France and his formidable advisers, and ward off political treats to his position at
home. Fortunately he has help, in the form of his friends Biagio, Agostino, and a
painter named Leonardo da Vinci.

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