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Renaissance Comparison - Essay Example

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The Italian Renaissance in Fact was the initial phase of the Renaissance as a whole period of great cultural achievement and changes in Europe that took place within a period of time between the 13th and the beginning of 17th centuries, marking Europe’s transition between Medieval and Modern Ages. …
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Renaissance Comparison Essay Sur College Renaissance Comparison Essay The Italian Renaissance in Fact was the initial phase of the Renaissance as a whole period of great cultural achievement and changes in Europe that took place within a period of time between the 13th and the beginning of 17th centuries, marking Europe’s transition between Medieval and Modern Ages. Although the very term renascence was brought into currency in the 19th century by the Swiss historian Jacob Burckhardt, the origins of this movement could be traced as earlier as the beginning of the 14th century. Actually the European Renaissance began in Central Italy, namely in Tuscany centering in the cities of Siena and Florence. This movement had further a considerable impact in the city of Venice where the remains of ancient Roman and Greek cultures had been brought together and provided Renaissance humanist scholars with new texts. Consequently the Renaissance had a significant impact on Rome, which was decorated with numerous structures in the new mode of all’antico, later was rebuilt by sixteenth-century humanist popes. The Italian Renaissance reached its peak in the mid-16th century as the country began to be permanently invaded by various foreign armies. Nevertheless, the ideals and ideas of the Italian Renaissance survived these calamities and even spread into the rest of European countries, initiating the English Renaissance and Northern Renaissance as a whole. To define the Renaissance in the northern part of the continent the term Northern Renaissance is used. Furthermore this term often refers to the Renaissance in the countries of Old World outside Italy. It was not until the middle of the 15th century that Italian Renaissance humanist ideas had influence in Europe outside Italy. Nevertheless from the second part of that century those ideas began to spread throughout the whole Europe. Eventually this influenced Renaissance of the Netherlands, Polish renaissance, German Renaissance French Renaissance as well as other localized national renaissance movements, each one with different strengths and characteristics (Janson, 1997, p28-31). King Francis I of France commissioned such prominent Italian artists as Leonardo da Vinci, imported other types of art and built splendid palaces initiating thus the French Renaissance. Commerce and trade in such cities as Bruges and Antwerp in the 15th and the 16th centuries respectively intensified cultural exchange between the Netherlands and Italy, although in fine arts, and in architecture in particular, late Gothic features remained present till the revival of Baroque even while painters were drawing on Italian models (Hartt, 2003). Printed books and universities helped to spread the spirit of the time throughout the Holy Roman Empire, the Netherlands and France, then to the countries of Scandinavia and finally England and Scotland by the end of the 16th century. Humanists, writers and scholars such as Desiderius Erasmus, Pierre de Ronsard and Rabelais were extremely influenced by the Italian Renaissance model and were part of the same cultural movement. During the English Elizabethan Renaissance, which coincided in time with Queen Elizabeth’s reign, such writers as Christopher Marlowe and William Shakespeare composed their priceless masterpieces. In some countries the Northern renaissance was different from the Italian Renaissance in its considerable centralization of political power. While Germany and Italy were dominated by self-governing city-states, the countries of Western and central Europe began to emerge as the centralized nation-states. Furthermore the Northern Renaissance was closely related to the Protestant Reformation as well as to the series of external ands internal conflicts between the Roman Catholic Church and numerous protestant groups. Those conflicts had such prolong effects as the division of the Low Countries. Italian Wars are generally viewed as the series of events that put an end to Italian Renaissance and initiated the Northern Renaissance. These Wars began in 1494 with French invasion which brought the widespread devastations upon the Northern Italy and as a result ended independence of many of self-governing city-states. As Italian renaissance declined the Northern Renaissance took over lots of its ideas and adapted its styles to their cultures. A number of prominent Italian artists opted for emigration. The most prominent example was Leonardo da Vinci who moved to France in 1516 though groups of less notable of artists invited to rebuild the Chateau de Fontainebleau established the new school of Fontainebleau which introduced the manner of Italian Renaissance in France. From Fontainebleau, these new styles changed by Mannerism, brought eventually to Antwerp and therefrom throughout the countries of Northern Europe. This spread north was also representative of a larger trend. No longer was the Mediterranean Europe's most important trade route. In 1498, Vasco da Gama reached India, and from that date the primary route of goods from the Orient was through the Atlantic ports of Lisbon, Seville, Nantes, Bristol, and London. These areas quickly surpassed Italy in wealth and power. References Baron, H. (1966) The Crisis of the Early Italian Renaissance: Civic Humanism and Republican Liberty in an Age of Classicism and Tyranny. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Janson, H.W. & Anthony F. Janson (1997). History of Art (5th, rev. ed.). New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc Read More
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