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Introduction to The Renaissance . Text Chapter 12 (pages 375-381). The Italian Renaissance . Renaissance means rebirth Many Italians between 1350 and 1550 believed they had witnessed a rebirth of the ancient Greek and Roman worlds

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introduction to the renaissance

Introduction to The Renaissance

Text Chapter 12 (pages 375-381)

the italian renaissance
The Italian Renaissance
  • Renaissance means rebirth
  • Many Italians between 1350 and 1550 believed they had witnessed a rebirth of the ancient Greek and Roman worlds
  • Historians later called this the Renaissance or Italian Renaissance- a period of European history that began in Italy and spread to the rest of Europe
characteristics of the renaissance
Characteristics of the Renaissance
  • Urban society
  • An age of recovery from the disasters of the 14th century (plague, political instability, and a decline of church power)
  • Emphasis on Individual ability
    • The well rounded, universal person was capable of achievements in many areas of life. For example, painting, sculpting, architecture, mathematics, inventor, etc…
the italian states
The Italian States
  • Italy was unable to develop a monarchy during the Middle Ages.
  • Three city states remained independent and played a critical role in Italian politics
    • Milan
    • Venice
    • Florence
  • Located in Northern Italy
  • One of the richest city states in Italy
  • In the 14th century, members of the Visconti family established themselves as the dukes of Milan.
  • Sforza the new duke in 1447 was the leader of a band of mercenaries – soldiers who sold their services to the highest bidder
  • A link between Asia and Western Europe
  • Drew traders from all over the world
  • A republic with an elected leader called a doge
  • Venice’s trade empire was tremendously profitable and made Venice an international power.
  • Dominated the region of Tuscany
  • Small but wealthy group of merchants established control of the government
  • The Medici family controlled the politics of the city.
  • Florence was a cultural center of Italy
machiavelli and the new statecraft
Machiavelli and the New Statecraft
  • Niccolo Machiavelli wrote The Prince
  • It is one of the most influential works on political power in the Western world.
  • Central thesis is how to acquire and keep political power.
  • According to Machiavelli, political activity should not be limited by moral principles
  • A prince must act on behalf of the state, even if that meant abandoning his conscience
  • Among the first to abandon morality as the basis for politics
renaissance society
Renaissance Society

The Nobility

Peasants & Townspeople

Peasants made up 85 – 90% of the population

By 1500, more and more peasants became legally free

Townspeople made up the rest of the third estate

Mostly merchants & artisans

  • Only 2-3% of the population
  • Born not made
  • Classical education & enrich his life with the arts
  • Live gracefully- certain standards of conduct
urban renaissance society
Urban Renaissance Society
  • Patricians- wealthy from trade, industry, and banking
  • Burghers- the shopkeepers, artisans, and guild masters and guild members
  • Workers- earned pitiful wages and made up 30-40 % of the urban population
  • Late 1300’s and early 1400’s poverty increased dramatically.
family and marriage
Family and Marriage
  • Family bond was a source of great security
  • To maintain the family, parents carefully arranged marriages, often to strengthen business or family ties
  • Details worked out way in advance, sometimes when children were only 2 or 3 years old
  • Father- center of the Italian family; Mother- supervised household- no share in father’s wealth
  • Father’s authority absolute until his death or he formally freed his children in court. Age of adulthood ranged from early teens to late twenties.