The Prince

Francesco Sforza Character Analysis

A skilled mercenary who fought for Filippo Visconti, the Duke of Milan, Francesco Sforza married Visconti's daughter in 1441. When Visconti died, Sforza used his military prowess and his marriage to seize control of the state, installing himself as Duke of Milan. Machiavelli cites Sforza as a ruler who successfully gained and preserved his power through prowess.
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Francesco Sforza Character Timeline in The Prince

The timeline below shows where the character Francesco Sforza appears in The Prince. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
The Masses and The Elite Theme Icon
...by previously unknown rulers. Some new principalities are "completely new," as was the case with Francesco Sforza , who rose from private citizen to Duke of Milan. Others are only partly new... (full context)
Chapter 7
Fortune and Prowess Theme Icon
The Masses and The Elite Theme Icon
...two contemporary rulers, one who came to power by prowess and the other by fortune. Francesco Sforza used his prowess to rise from a private citizen to the duke of Milan. He... (full context)
Chapter 12
Laws and Arms Theme Icon
Fortune and Prowess Theme Icon
The Masses and The Elite Theme Icon
...armies. By contrast, the Carthaginians were nearly ruined by their reliance on mercenaries. Machiavelli offers Francesco Sforza as a modern example of the danger of mercenary troops, recounting how Sforza, a mercenary... (full context)
Chapter 14
Laws and Arms Theme Icon
Fortune and Prowess Theme Icon
Goodwill and Hatred Theme Icon
The Masses and The Elite Theme Icon
To illustrate this principal, Machiavelli invokes the story of Francesco Sforza and his sons. With his knowledge of war, Sforza rose to become Duke of Milan.... (full context)