It is a truism to say that machiavellism existed before Machiavelli.
That machiavellism existed before Machiavelli has now become a truism.
After a parricide, a fratricide was nothing to him, and he executed it with a machiavellism full of atrocious precautions.
"cunning, deceitful, unscrupulous," 1570s, from Niccolo Machiavelli (1469-1527), Florentine statesman and author of "Del Principe," a work advising rulers to place advantage above morality. A word of abuse in English well before his works were translated ("The Discourses" 1636, "The Prince" 1640), in part because his books were Indexed by the Church, in part because of French attacks on him (e.g. Gentillet's, translated into English 1602).