May 24, 2024
European Renaissance

European Renaissance

Basically, the word Renaissance originates from the French word ‘Renaissance’ which means rebirth. After the fall of ancient Rome in 476 AD, European progress in science and art almost stopped until the 14th century. In medieval Europe the intellectuality of the superstitious masses had reached such a state that superstitions, immorality and independent and free thought were hindered in the society. As a result, the development of the individual mentality is disrupted. Not only this, there were often epidemics like war, ignorance, famine and the Black Death that disrupted the normal life of people.

This period is known as the “Dark Ages” in European history.

The Renaissance was the cultural, artistic, political and economic ‘rebirth’ of Europe after the Middle Ages. The period from the 14th to the 17th century is generally considered to be the Renaissance period. The origin of which was Italy in Europe.

Now the question will arise in many minds, why this epoch-changing renaissance started in Italy instead of England, Germany, and France..?

What was the reason behind this?

So today’s discussion is why the European Renaissance began in Italy? Search this question.

Despite the fact that all the rest of Europe had revolutionary changes, there were one or more reasons behind Italy being the center. Let’s find out.

Geographical Factors

Geographical location put Italy at the forefront of the Renaissance. Italy is located in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. This is why Italy was the natural center of trade and culture in the region. Italy benefited most from the trade that had developed between Europe and the Arab countries since the Crusades.

Fall of Constantinople

When the Ottoman Empire captured Constantinople in 1453 AD, scholars left Constantinople and came to Italy. Their arrival further eased the way for the Renaissance in Italy. The passion for literature and art which had been awakened in Italy by the efforts of the humanists received a great stimulus from the arrival of scholars from Constantinople.

Influence of Italian cities

In addition to the pursuit of knowledge, Italian cities developed a nationalist spirit in the middle Ages. And it was in these cities that medieval civilization first began to take on the characteristics of the modern era. Under the influence of which the new modern society began.

Relations with Roman Civilization

Another reason why the Renaissance began in Italy was the proximity of the city of Rome to the Italian peninsula. The deep influence of ancient Roman culture and civilization on Italy makes Italians naturally reverent to ancient Roman civilization and culture. Fifteenth century thought had no contact with ancient civilizations and cultures elsewhere in Europe. But later thought in Italy was not entirely divorced from ancient Greco-Roman civilization. So this contact with ancient civilization made the way of Renaissance much easier.

Influence of Italian Orthodoxy

Even as the political unity of the Roman Empire broke down, Roman Christianity helped to preserve the ancient traditions and glory of Rome. It keeps the education and cultural practices of religious institutions intact in various political upheavals. Rome’s ecclesiastical exchange was significant in the development of the Latin language.

Influence of Humanists

Many of the founders of the Renaissance were Italian. Italy became the birthplace of talented people in every field of literature, art etc. Humanist writers like Petrarch, Boccaccio etc. were all Italians.

Effects of being a meeting place of different nations

During the fall of the Roman Empire (476), Italy became a meeting place for Goths, Lombards, Franks, Saracen, Normans and Germans. Due to the contact of different cultures and civilizations like Roman, Byzantine, Arab, German etc., a new consciousness and culture was created in Italy.

Secular Education

The introduction of secular education in churches and schools and universities in various Italian cities gave rise to the idea that there was another side to human life besides spiritual development and that people could live simple and happy lives without degradation of spirit. It was this idea that prepared the Italians to receive the seeds of the Renaissance.

Symbols of Roman Civilization

After the beginning of the Renaissance, traces of ancient civilizations, literature, art etc. were enough to help its speed and scope in Italy. Almost everywhere in Italy there were traces of Roman civilization in sculpture, architecture, art.

Invention of Type Machine and Printing Press

The introduction of the printing press in Europe at the end of the fifteenth century opened a new chapter in literature. Gutenberg’s invention led to the printing of the Bible in Latin in 1454-56 AD. The invention of the printing press marked a turning point in the spread of the Renaissance. With the establishment of the printing press, many books were printed, making education accessible to all. Studying books brings new consciousness in dark people.

Influence of Renaissance painters

Artists like Masaccio, Mesaccio, Donatello, Jan-van Eyck, Brunelleschi, Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Ghiberti appeared in the art during this period. Among them, Masaccio developed three-dimensionality in painting, Brunelleschi invented perspective, and Jan-van Eyck took painting to unique heights. Leonardo da Vinci was a painter, architect, sculptor, poet, writer, musician and scientist. He was a symbol of the Renaissance. His paintings ‘Mona Lisa’ and ‘The Last Supper’ are still a source of wonder for artists. Raphael’s ‘Angel’ and Michelangelo’s ‘Last Judgment’ paintings are priceless treasures of artists.

Renaissance Science

Copernicus was a Renaissance scientist. He discovered this fact by orbiting the earth’s sun. During this period Galileo revolutionized epistemology with the first telescope and oscillator, and Sir John I. Newton discovered his famous ‘Principle of Gravitation’.

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