Renaissance (Rebirth) 1450 – 1600
Transcript Renaissance (Rebirth) 1450 – 1600
A New Vision of Humanity
1450 – 1600
St. Peter's Basilica
St. Peter's Basilica is a Late Renaissance
church located within the Vatican City.
It is regarded as one of the holiest Christian
It has the largest interior of any Christian
church in the world, holding 60,000 people.
It is the burial site of Saint Peter, who was
one of the twelve apostles of Jesus and first
Bishop of Rome.
Saint Peter's tomb, along with many other
Popes is directly below the altar of the
Construction of the present basilica began
on April 18, 1506 and was completed on
November 18, 1626.
The Italian Renaissance
It originated in Italy around 1300.
These new ideas were well-received and
flourished throughout Italy.
By 1500, these new ideas had also reached
Northern parts of Europe.
Understanding the Beginnings of the
To understand the beginnings of the
Renaissance, you must go back +/- 800 yrs, to
the fall of the Roman Empire.
For 1 000 yrs, Rome ruled most of Europe,
bringing advancements in technology, learning
Once Rome fell to invaders in 542 CE, Western
Europe fell into a stagnant* period known as the
*Not advancing or developing
Society regressed; People did not venture far
from their small villages.
Local lords ruled by force and intimidation.
Learning took place only in religious houses.
Europeans grew up ignorant, illiterate, and
Peasants and serfs did not find life beautiful or
They lived in miserable conditions.
He had little hope of improving their lives.
If you were born a peasant, you would
most likely die a peasant.
Their main goal in life was finding eternal
Life on Earth was a journey to suffer
through, in order to reach Heaven.
New Beliefs at the End of the Middle Ages:
Towards the end of the Middle Ages, new
ideas and beliefs about life and its purpose
began to spread.
This school of thought, known as humanism,
was based on the belief that life on Earth had
a point of its own.
It wasn`t just a miserable pit-stop on the way
Humanists believed that life was beautiful and
should be enjoyed.
The Rise of Merchants at the End of the
The Black Death, wiped out hundreds of
thousands of Europeans.
This caused a huge shortage of workers.
Wages rose as a result of a high demand for
The standard of living rose as the wages
This lead to the rise of wealthy merchants,
They would provide the money, resources and
the incentive for the Renaissance.
The Renaissance brought Changes in
It was a cultural movement.
The social changes that took place during
the Renaissance were slow, but steady.
Individuals had become for confident and
felt more empowered.
Humanism was a key Component of
It was also an the intellectual movement
It was based on the study of classical Greek
and Roman cultures.
Humanists believed that your
accomplishments were important and defined
who you were as a person.
The new attitude was ‘Live for Today’.
Hard-working merchants liked this movement
because they were tired of the ruling nobles*.
*A person who is born into a privileged, wealthy family
Humanism and Renaissance Art:
New techniques in art created astounding
works of art.
A technique known as Perspective made
scenes appear three dimensional.
Careful shading make objects look round and
real, rather than flat.
Using human models helped artists portray the
human body far more accurately than in
Renaissance art glorified the human body.
It placed importance of the individual and were
The works of the four great masters, Leonardo da
Vinci, Raphael, Michelangelo, and Donatello set
the standard for Renaissance art.
Davinci’s Mona Lisa portrays a simple woman,
wearing a simple smile.
Artists turned to the classics of Ancient Greece
and Rome for inspirations.
Early Medieval art was Romanesque style.
Romanesque paintings are naive; the
characters have unrealistic features and
showed no emotion.
By 1100 AD, Medieval art had become Gothic
Gothic architecture can be recognized by the
pointed arches on buildings.
Gothic art shows more concern for realism
Gothic Architecture became popular in
the late Medieval Period.
It was most commonly used for
cathedrals and churches in Europe.
Westminster Abbey is a large, Gothic
It is the traditional place of coronation and
burial site for English monarchs.
What did Humanism contribute to
Intellectuals began to spread scientific
knowledge throughout Europe despite the
Church’s opposition to it.
Humanists had great interests in history,
philosophy, art and literature.
They looked backwards, at the cultures of
Ancient Greece and Rome for inspiration.
The children of wealthy merchants and nobles
started reading humanist philosophy.
According to Humanism, education should
stimulate student’s creative powers.
Students were taught poetry, history, and public
Before the Humanist movement, the Church
successfully controlled all aspects of our lives.
Europeans under humanist influence began to
question the Church‘s practises.
The Humanist belief was that people were
able to reason well on their own, without the
influence of the Church.
The belief also rejected the idea of being
controlled or brainwashed by the Church.
In other words, people should be given the
right to have individual freedom of thought.
They believed God should not be our central
They preached for tolerance and peace instead
of also engaging in religious wars.
Printing in the Renaissance:
Invented by Johannes Gutenberg
The printing press revolutionized Renaissance
society the same way TV and the internet
have influenced the 20th and 21st centuries.
For the first time books were cheap enough for
the masses; learning and new ideas spread
like wildfire throughout Europe.
The printing pressing enabled ideas to spread
Scientific Progress During the
Church taught that the Earth was flat and that it
was at the center of the universe!
Any new idea which had conflicted with the
biblical texts was forbidden (punishable by
Scientists learned about human anatomy by
This lead to the advancement in medicine.
Dissecting corpses was forbidden by the church.
Martin LUTHER and The Reformation:
•Martin Luther started a movement to reform the
•He believed the church had become too rich,
powerful and corrupt!
Criticism of the Church:
Members of the clergy did not honour their
vows of poverty and chastity.
The Pope and bishops lived in luxury and
behaved like powerful noblemen.
Priests were ignorant, neglected their duties
and were left unsupervised.
Pope Leo X & the Selling of Indulgences:
When the Church attached the sale of
indulgences, Luther became increasingly
enraged at this practice.
Indulgences meant that a person could buy
their way out of purgatory or hell.
Church leaders commonly launched
indulgence campaigns to finance large
building projects (such as the building of St.
Peter's in Rome).
In 1517, Martin Luther nailed the 95 theses
onto the wooden doors of the church.
He revealed the corruption going on inside
His Letter stressed out the following issues:
1. The Catholic Church believes that we only
get into heaven by faith plus good works.
(Showing that you are a good Christian by
helping the poor, helping your neighbor in
need, encouraging others, volunteering etc.)
The bible teaches us that we go to heaven
strictly by faith in Jesus Christ.
2. The Bible is the living true authority of God, not the
3. People can read and interpret the bible for
themselves instead of relying on the priests or
bishops to do it for them.
4. People did not need to buy their rights to heaven.
5. All people are created equal through the eyes of
6. He encouraged worshiping God through praise
Martin Luther was excommunicated by the
Pope in 1520 after he publicly burned the
Papal Decree (letters issued by the Pope).
In 1521, Holy Roman Emperor Charles V put
him on trial and condemned him as a
heretic and an outlaw of the church.
They didn't execute him because that
would've made him a martyr.
Frederick the Wise, of Saxony made a deal
with the Catholic Church resulting in Martin
Luther's safe passage to his home at
While in exile, he rewrote the bible in
During the months he stayed there, he
witnessed many social changes as a result
of his revolution.
"Salvation is achieved through Jesus Christ
alone" – Martin Luther
The Church’s Reaction to the
In 1545, Pope Paul III assembled a council
(meeting with important Church officials) in
the city of Trent to discuss how to deal with
The council made the following decisions
at this meeting:
Priests had to be supervised and educated
Published an Official Latin Bible.
Created new religious orders like the Jesuits.
Jesuits were educated priests that taught and
spread the Roman Catholic faith throughout
• Heretics would be prosecuted in courts called
• Protestants were considered heretics.
• Enemies of the Church were put on trial and
sentenced to death.
• This council also decided to get rid of the selling
of indulgences because it was bad for the
•The church made a list of banned books.
•These “BAD” books were listed in THE INDEX.
The Effects of the Counter-Reformation:
The Council of Trent revived enthusiasm for
the Roman Catholic Church.
The highly-educated Jesuits challenged
The Protestant movement was weakened.