"Ambition is so powerful a passion in the human breast, that however high we reach we are never satisfied."Can someone give me explanation and example for this quote?

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ladyvols1 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

“Ambition is so powerful a passion in the human breast, that however high we reach we are never satisfied." Niccolò Machiavelli said this and believed very strongly that the desire for power created a desire so strong in human beings that they would mislead, cheat, steal, and even kill to gain this power.  The phrase and the philosophy were promoted strongly by Machiavelli and can be read in his writings like “The Prince,” written in 1513.  We now use the term Machiavellian to define “anyone using amoral and expedient methods to achieve political goals.”  An example of this would be Hitler’s rise to power and how this power was abused.