The Prince: Novel Summary: Chapters 11-12

Chapter 11: Here, Machiavelli briefly speaks about ecclesiastical principalities, or governments run by the Catholic Church.  He initially seems very critical of such governments, saying that Church officials, ordained by God, feel free to neglect their subjects because they know they cant lose there princely status.  Indeed Machiavelli asserts that Church governments “have valued the temporal power very slightly.”
Soon, he elaborates on the difficulties Italy has had over the years because of the uncertain relationship between the Church and State.  He also addresses the worldliness of popes (Julius and Leo) in recent years and their consolidation of political power and riches.  Machiavelli shows that recent popes have been more concerned with temporal power than were their predecessors.  Yet he is hesitant to outright attack the Church officials, admitting, “I shall speak no more of them, because, being exalted and maintained by God, it would be the act of a presumptuous and rash man to discuss them.”
Chapter 12: Chapter 12 marks a turn in Machiavellis focus.  While up to this point he has concentrated on the kinds and makings of princes, now he addresses the military, which the prince must use to support his regime.  Machiavelli sees an inherent connection between laws and arms: “as there cannot be good laws where the state is not well armed, it follows that where they are well armed they have good laws.”
These soldiers are either natives of the city or they are mercenaries/auxiliaries.  Machiavelli has little respect for this latter group of foreign soldiers.  He describes them as having “neither the fear of God nor fidelity to men, and destruction is deferred only so long as the attack is; for in peace one is robbed by them, and in war by he enemy.” Machiavelli blames these mercenaries for many of Italys problems.  Citing historical examples, he shows that princes should use their own men as soldiers if they wish to win any prolonged war.