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The Philosopher Prince is a Commerce Age politician in Age of Empires III, available to all European civilizations except the Dutch, French, and Maltese. As soon as the player advances to the Commerce Age by choosing him, 500 food appears in the Home City shipment point (750 for the Italians if the Advanced Politicians Home City Card was sent).

Before the Definitive Edition, The Philosopher Prince is available to the Dutch by default, the French at a level 10 Home City, the British at a level 40 Home City, the Ottomans at a level 50 Home City, and the Russians and Spanish at a level 60 Home City.


Much like The Naturalist, choosing The Philosopher Prince gives the player a food bonus in the start of the new Age, which can make up for the advance cost. The Philosopher Prince enables the player to perform a Fast Fortress strategy, as the food may help to skip the Commerce Age; otherwise, the Food can also be invested in early technologies or troops for a rush. The Ottomans and Italians can get better food crates if they get the Silk Road or Advanced Politician shipments, respectively.

Recommended shipments are addressed below.

All civilizations[]

  • Villager Shipments (all except the Russians and Portuguese): For performing a boom
  • Exploration and Commerce age Crates of food and Chests of coin: Sending these may enable the player to jump into the Fortress Age, for example the player may pick Infinite Chests of 300 coin once in the Exploration Age, then once in Commerce age pick Crates of 700 food (for a total of 1,200 food) then pick Chests of 700 coin (for a total of 1,000 coin). In a few shipments, the player can get the required 1,200 food, 1,000 coin for aging up to the Fortress Age.
  • Native Lore: Native technologies cost -20%. Most native technologies costs food, so this may be helpful if the player intends to use these technologies for several purposes.
  • Advanced Arsenal:Arsenals can be built in the Commerce Age; provide Arsenals with Flint Lock, Paper Cartridge, Military Drummers, Pillage, Professional Gunners, and Trunion. Many of these technologies require food so it may be helpful for a rush. British, Italians, Swedes and Germans should prefer to pick The Logistician for this purpose instead of The Philosopher Prince.
  • Fencing School (all except the Ottomans and Spanish): If the player intends to use the food for training troops and perform a rush this should be considered.
  • Riding School (all except the Spanish): If the player intends to use the food for training troops and perform a rush, this should be considered.
  • Advanced Market: Markets get +20% buy/sell factors. The food may be exchanged with a better price if needed.
  • Any economic upgrade.
  • Medicine: Villager cost and train time -15%.
  • Livestock shipments: Livestock cost food but provides food in return; so with this the player may save the food from The Philosopher Prince for something else.
  • Commerce Age military units shipments: If performing a rush, this may save some resources so the player may use the food for training additional troops.

Flag BritishDE British[]

  • TEAM House of Tudor and Virginia Company: British Manors spawns settlers so having cheaper manors eases the production of settlers and this indirectly impacts food savings.

Flag ItalianDE Italians[]

  • Lombard Shipments: The food can be deposited on Lombards if needed in order to get wood and coin.
  • Advanced Politicians.
  • Broken Lance Company, Croatian Company and Maltese Company: These three shipments requires food, coin and wood to be sent, The Philosopher Prince can address the food on this so the player just need to gather wood and coin.

Flag OttomanDE Ottomans[]

  • Silk Road: this is an essential shipment if picking The Philosopher Prince, with this instead of 500 food the player may get 625 food.
  • Matrakci School: For an infantry rush.
  • Sublime Porte: Exchanges all food for 1.25 times the wood: with this shipment the player may use The Philosopher Prince as a replacement of The Quartermaster. If used in combination with Silk Road the player may get a total 781 wood out of the original food from the Philosopher Prince.

Flag PortugueseDE Portuguese[]

  • Feitorias: Town Centers generate 0.4 food, 0.24 wood, 0.24 coin per second.

Flag RussianDE Russians[]

  • Dueling School: Infantry train time -25%. Useful for a rush.

Flag SpanishDE Spanish[]

  • TEAM Hidalgos: Reduces the training time of regular coin free infantry units, useful for a rush.
  • House of Trastamára: The next Age up is researched 8.5% faster and costs 80 resources less for each shipment that has been sent in the current Age including this one; Resources are proportional to amount required (approximately 43.6 food, 36.4 coin for Fortress Age, 50 food, 30 coin for Industrial Age, 40 food, 40 coin for Imperial Age): Helpful for a Fast Fortress strategy when picking The Philosopher Prince.

Flag SwedishDE Swedes[]

  • Surströmming: Ships 2 Surströmming crates (provides 100 food which increases at a rate of 1 food every second if not gathered); only 10 Surströmming crates can be present at a time.
  • 15 Elk
  • Blueberries: Torps spawn a Blueberry Bush (which have +200 food and are gathered twice as fast by Torps) instead of Berry Bush when built; turns all Torps' Berry Bushes into Blueberry Bushes.
  • TEAM New Sweden: Ships 1 Torp Wagon.
  • Oxenstierna Reforms: Exchanges all coin for 1.25 times the food.


3Icon48px Age of Empires III[]

  • Dutch and French: Can choose The Philosopher Prince to advance to the Colonial Age.

Age3DE Icon Definitive Edition[]

  • Dutch and French: The Philosopher Prince removed from the Commerce Age politician options.
  • Home City level requirement removed.
Age up methods in Age of Empires III
Politicians for European civilizations
Colonial age up Commerce Age Politician governor The Governor · Politician imam The Imam · Politician inventor The Inventor · Politician logistician The Logistician · Politician naturalist The Naturalist · Politician philosopher prince The Philosopher Prince · Politician quarter master The Quartermaster · The Medici The Medici
Fortress age up Fortress Age Politician admiral The Admiral of the Ocean Sea · Politician adventurer The Adventurer · Politician bishop The Bishop · Politician ethiopian queen The Ethiopian Queen · Politician exiled prince The Exiled Prince · Politician gentlemen pirate The Gentleman Pirate · Politician marksman The Marksman · Politician mercenary contractor The Mercenary Contractor · Politician mohawk statesmen The Mohawk Statesman · Politician scout The Scout · Politician sergeant arms The Sergeant at Arms
Industrial age up Industrial Age Politician cavalier The Cavalry Marshal · Politician engineer The Engineer · Politician grand vizier The Grand Vizier · Politician kings musketeer The King's Musketeer · Politician logistician The Logistician · Politician papal guard The Papal Guard · Politician tycoon The Tycoon · Politician viceroy The Viceroy · Politician war minister The War Minister · The Pope The Pope
Imperial age up Imperial Age Politician el presidente El Presidente · Politician general The General · Politician black duke The Black Duke · Politician inventor The Inventor · Politician knight The Knight · Politician mercenary contractor The Mercenary Contractor · Politician Royalist The Royalist · Politician Scottish marshal The Scottish Marshal
Civilizations Flag BritishDE British · Flag DutchDE Dutch · Flag FrenchDE French · Flag GermanDE Germans · Flag ItalianDE Italians · Flag MalteseDE Maltese · Flag OttomanDE Ottomans · Flag PortugueseDE Portuguese · Flag RussianDE Russians · Flag SpanishDE Spanish · Flag SwedishDE Swedes
Tribal Council members for Native American civilizations
Colonial age up Commerce Age The Messenger · The Wise Woman · The Warrior · The Elder · The Chief
Civilizations Flag AztecDE Aztecs · Flag IroquoisDE Haudenosaunee · Flag IncanDE Inca · Flag SiouxDE Lakota
Wonders for Asian civilizations
Flag ChineseDE Chinese Confucian academy aoe3de Confucian Academy · PorcelainTowerDE Porcelain Tower · SummerPalaceDE Summer Palace · TempleOfHeavenDE Temple of Heaven · WhitePagodaDE White Pagoda
Flag IndianDE Indians AgraFortDE Agra Fort · CharminarGateDE Charminar Gate · KarniMataDE Karni Mata · TajMahalDE Taj Mahal · TowerOfVictoryDE Tower of Victory
Flag JapaneseDE Japanese GoldenPavilionDE Golden Pavilion · GiantBuddhaDE Great Buddha · ShogunateDE Shogunate · ToriiGatesDE Torii Gates · ToshoguShrineDE Toshogu Shrine
Federal States for United States
Colonial age up Commerce Age Federal state US delaware Delaware · Federal state US massachussetts Massachusetts · Federal state US pennsylvania Pennsylvania · Federal state US rhode island Rhode Island · Federal state US virginia Virginia
Fortress age up Fortress Age Federal state US indiana Indiana · Federal state US kentucky Kentucky · Federal state US maryland Maryland · Federal state US new hampshire New Hampshire · Federal state US tennessee Tennessee
Industrial age up Industrial Age Federal state US california California · Federal state US new jersey New Jersey · Federal state US ohio Ohio · Federal state US south carolina South Carolina · Federal state US vermont Vermont
Imperial age up Imperial Age Federal state US connecticut Connecticut · Federal state US florida Florida · Federal state US illinois Illinois · Federal state US new york New York · Federal state US texas Texas
Federal States for Mexicans
Colonial age up Commerce Age Durango Durango · Michoacán Michoacán · Tlaxcala Tlaxcala · Chiapas Chiapas · Querétaro Querétaro
Fortress age up Fortress Age Sonora federal state Sonora · Coahuila Coahuila · Sinaloa Sinaloa · San Luis Potosí San Luis Potosí · Tabasco Tabasco
Industrial age up Industrial Age Chihuahua Chihuahua · Zacatecas Zacatecas · Tamaulipas Tamaulipas · Guanajuato Guanajuato · Guerrero Guerrero
Imperial age up Imperial Age Oaxaca Oaxaca · Jalisco Jalisco · Estado de México Estado de México · Veracruz Veracruz · Puebla Puebla
Alliances for African civilizations
Flag Ethiopian aoe3de Ethiopians Alliance Habesha Habesha · Alliance Jesuits Jesuits · Alliance Portuguese Portuguese · Alliance Somalis Somalis · Alliance Sudanese Sudanese · Alliance Indians Indians· Alliance Oromo Oromo+ · Alliance Arabs Arabsx
Flag Hausa Hausa Alliance Akan Akan · Alliance Berbers Berbers · Alliance Hausa Hausa · Alliance Moroccans Moroccans · Alliance Songhai Songhai · Alliance Fulani Fulani· Alliance Yoruba Yoruba+ · Alliance British Britishx
* requires Fortress Age to be unlocked; + requires Industrial Age to be unlocked; x requires Imperial Age to be unlocked
Unused options for Tribal Council members, Wonders, and Alliances can be used in future Age-ups.