Liquid error: internal Arrow Fat Left Icon Arrow Fat Right Icon Arrow Right Icon Cart Icon Close Circle Icon Expand Arrows Icon Facebook Icon Pinterest Icon Twitter Icon Youtube Icon Hamburger Icon Information Icon Down Arrow Icon Mail Icon Mini Cart Icon Person Icon Ruler Icon Search Icon Shirt Icon Triangle Icon Bag Icon Play Video
  • Niccolo Machiavelli 1516 letter among highlights at Dreweatts
  • Post author
    Paul Fraser
  • 1516letterMachiavelliNiccolo

Niccolo Machiavelli 1516 letter among highlights at Dreweatts

A 1516 letter by the legendary Florentine diplomat and writer Niccolo Machiavelli (1469-1527) is to auction at Dreweatts & Bloomsbury in London.

It's valued at £6,000-8,000 ($9,036-12,049) ahead of a March 31 sale in London.

Machiavelli letter Dreweatts
Machiavelli was a renaissance era Florentine diplomat and writer

It's addressed to Paolo Vettori, commander of the papal navy, and dates to October 10, 1516. It relates to a previously undocumented visit by Machiavelli to Livorno in Tuscany.

Machiavelli is best remembered for his seminal masterpiece The Prince (circa 1513), one of the first works of philosophy ever published in Europe.

The book is addressed to an unnamed prince and offers instruction on how to rule. Machiavelli is not above using immoral and underhand tactics to ensure survival and stability. This led to the adoption of the term "Machiavellian" to describe politicians who adopt this strategy, while "Old Nick" entered common parlance as a nickname for the Devil.

The age of the lot, combined with Machiavelli's infamy and importance to the development of Western thought, is likely to ensure a strong hammer price at auction.

The sale will also include two letters from Werner Karl Heisenberg (1901-1976) to Samuel Goudsmit on the discovery of electron spin (a key principle in quantum physics).

The lot is valued at £4,000-6,000 ($6,024-9,036). 

Please sign up to our free newsletter to receive exciting news about autograph auctions.


  • Post author
    Paul Fraser
  • 1516letterMachiavelliNiccolo