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History of Renaissance

History | 12-14 yrs | Interactive

What does Renaissance mean?

The Renaissance was a period in European history from the 14th century to the 17th century. The word Renaissance means rebirth. It was a rebirth in the sense that the period was a connecting period between the Middle Ages and Modern Ages in European history, though it is closely associated with Florence, Italy.

Why is the Renaissance important?

The Renaissance is important because it signalled the beginning of change in the thinking of European Christianity and so the perception of Man, Church and God changed too. This changed art, literature and architecture also.

The seeds of Renaissance were sowed post the Black Death, the plague which wiped out millions of people in Europe, between 1346 and 1353. This caused the economy to change as well.

Why did the Renaissance start?

The Rennaisance started with the decline in the powers of the Roman Catholic Church. The humanists emerged who believed that individuals had important contributions to make in the world, rather than that, the only ideas were of the Church.

How did Renaissance affect science, arts and literature?

  • During Renaissance, science, arts, architecture, philosophy and literature underwent a transformation in techniques and thought. Man became the measure of all things, as earlier stated by the Greek Philosopher Protagoras(490 BC to 420 BC). Some of the Renaissance thought patterns did reflect the early Greek and Roman philosophies. Renaissance art and philosophies brought human emotions into focus.
  • Renaissance art did not reject Christianity. However, there was a subtle shift in how intellectuals approached religion and other cultural areas of life. Printing was also discovered during this period.
  • During the Renaissance, art and money went hand in hand. The church was one the patrons apart from wealthy noblemen, who were businessmen.

Leonardo da Vinci’s contribution to the Renaissance period

Leonardo da Vinci’s brilliance crossed multiple disciplines, that he was referred to as the Renaissance man. Apart from the Mona Lisa and The Last Supper, two works of art he is famous for, he also did extensive studies and invented various machines and also surgery.

Leonardo da Vinci also created the map of the anatomical proportions of the human body, a very important study based on the notes of the architect Vitruvius. The defining of man as the measure of all things, the essence of Renaissance is reflected in this.

The Renaissance Timeline

  1. 1346   Bubonic plague begins
  2. 1350   Renaissance begins
  3. 1413   Brunelleschi creates Linear Perspectives in Art
  4. 1429   Joan of Arc and the Siege of Orleans
  5. 1439   Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press
  6. 1464   Cosimo de Medici dies (Banker and Wealthy Florentine, also one of the most important patrons of Renaissance artists)
  7. 1478   The Spanish Inquisition
  8. 1486   Botticelli paints the Birth of Venus
  9. 1492   Christopher Columbus landed in the Caribbeans
  10. 1495   Leonardo da Vinci paints The Last Supper
  11. 1510   Raphael paints the School of Athens Fresco
  12. 1512   Michaelangelo paints the Sistine Chapel
  13. 1514   Machiavelli writes the Prince
  14. 1514   Thomas More writes The Utopia
  15. 1517   Martin Luther creates the theses for the birth of Protestantism
  16. 1559   Coronation of Queen Elizabeth the First.

Who were the important artists of the Renaissance?

Some of the important artists of the Renaissance are :

  1. Giotto di Bondone
  2. Leonardo da Vinci
  3. Michaelangelo Buonarroti
  4. Raphael Urbino
  5. Donatello
  6. Titian
  7. Sandro Botticelli
  8. Albrecht Dürer
  9. Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio
  10. Filippo Brunelleschi
  11. Hieronymus Bosch