posture of affairs


Senior Member

again from Machiavelli's The Prince translated by W.K. Marriott in 1908, here is a small extract;

"It has not been seen in our times that such fortresses have been of use to any prince, unless to the Countess of Forli,(*) when the Count Girolamo, her consort, was killed; for by that means she was able to withstand the popular attack and wait for assistance from Milan, and thus recover her state; and the posture of affairs was such at that time that the foreigners could not assist the people. But fortresses were of little value to her afterwards when Cesare Borgia attacked her, and when the people, her enemy, were allied with foreigners."

Used in this extract, I think the phrase "posture of affairs" means the state of foreign affairs and the positions of all the actors involved in it at a particular time, right?

If not, could you explain it please?

Thank you in advance.

By the way, the phrase "unless" means "except" here, right?
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