Niccolo Machiavelli was a Florentine patriot, civil servant and political theorist. Accidentally and unjustly implicated in a plot against them, Machiavelli was arrested and tortured. Machiavelli criticized writers on politics for dealing with ideal and imaginary states, and claimed him to deal with the 'effective truth' of politics. One who did was Cesare Borgia, a prince with whom Machiavelli dealt while serving the Florentine republic. Machiavelli was very far from encouraging any sort of enormity. Statesmen are the creators of civilization, and their ambitions are without glory unless they serve the public good. Machiavelli is deeply anticlerical in a Latin style and often directly hostile to Christianity because its ethic of humility weakens governments and discourages a serious military ferocity. The Machiavelli of the Discourses is less well known but more enduring. The Machiavelli of popular imagination, however, has always been the exponent of the pleasures of manipulation, the supreme pornographer of power.