Niccolo Machiavelli has recently returned home after being imprisoned
I could bear these humiliations with more ease, if I had not spent my entire youth charming those above me in rank with the persona I created from the air, with my own guile. Me, with no family name, no money, no connections! How I rose! Hand over hand, scaling the Alps of Florentine society, making myself out of nothing! Can you imagine what it is like to spend your precious youth scraping and bowing and kissing the hands of those just a few steps above you in society? Not ever allowed to be yourself, your true self?
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