The rebirth of classical antiquity

The Renaissance was a period of great social change in European history from the 14th to the 17th century, marking the transition from the Middle Ages to modern times.

The word “renaissance” is a French word meaning “rebirth” and symbolizes the rebirth of classical antiquity.

The Renaissance adopted the ancient Greek and Roman thinking, styles and themes and turned to learning more and more using modern techniques.

With the advent of the printing press, knowledge was now available to the clergy, the aristocracy, and those outside the royal family.

The Renaissance first appeared in Italy in the late 13th century with Dante’s writings and Giotto’s paintings.

Increased interaction between different cultures, rediscovery of ancient Greek and Roman writings, the rise of humanism and various artistic and technological inventions contributed to the rise of the Renaissance.

Greek classical antiquity

Classical antiquity 8th century BC and 6th century AD The Middle Ages are the period of cultural history when ancient Greece and then ancient Rome dominated the Mediterranean Sea and the Middle East.

Democracy, philosophy, astronomy, literature, sculpture, drama, medicine, mathematics and the Olympic Games were all born in western Greece.

Greek culture influenced Roman culture. Most of the educated Romans were bilingual in Greek and Latin because Greek was the international language from the Hellenistic period to 323-BC to the Byzantine period which was 1453-AD.

In the last century BC many rich young people like Cicero, Mark Antony and Julius Caesar went to study in Roman Athens or Rhodes Island.

Temples, government buildings and houses represent Greek-style architecture. The three primary styles of column design used in temples in classical Greece were Doric, Ionic and Corinthian.

Byzantine Empire

The Greek city of Byzantium Constantinople and the capital of the Byzantine Empire was to be famous in Asia Minor (now modern Turkey).

It was from Constantinople that Greek literature and culture spread to Western Europe, contributing to the Renaissance.

When the Byzantine Empire was destroyed by the Ottoman Turks in 1453, many Byzantine Greek scholars fled to Western Europe, bringing with them their cultural heritage and many original Greek manuscripts.

Italian city-state

At the beginning of the Renaissance, Italy was divided into several powerful city-states ruled by one large city.

One of the major city-states was Florence, a republic like ancient Rome.

The Italian language was developed in the early 14th century by the works of the Tuscan writer Dante Aligheri, which helped to make the Tuscan dialect the national literary language of Italy.

When Italy was united in 1861, Tuscan became the official language of the country.

Florence, Italy

The Renaissance began in Florence, Italy between 1350 and 1400 by its writers, painters, architects and philosophers.

It then replaced other Italian city-states, such as Florence, Venice, Milan, Bologna, Ferrara, and Rome.

Then, during the 15th century, ideas of the Renaissance spread from Italy to France and throughout Western and Northern Europe.

Fifteenth-century Florence’s economic power was political power in the hands of wealthy merchants.

The largest and most respected bank in Europe was Medici Bank, founded in 1397 by Giovanni Medici.

The powerful Medici family ruled Florence for over 60 years, financing the artists by purchasing their paintings and sculptures.


Dante Aligheri (1265-1321) was a leading poet of the late Middle Ages and early Renaissance.

His use of Italian instead of Latin in The Divine Comedy is considered a sign of the rise of Renaissance humanism.


Giotto de Bondon, “Father of the Renaissance” was born in Tuscany around 1266 (his exact date and place of birth are unknown).

He was one of the most important masters of 14th century Italian painting who introduced the technique of realism which became the new art style of the High Renaissance.

Giotto’s most recognizable masterpieces are biblical scenes adorning the Scrovagini Chapel in Padua.

His performances of human personalities will be copied by other artists.


The Italian poet, Francisco Petrarca (Petrarch 1304 – 1374) (Petrarch), born in Arezzo, Tuscany, is the “father of humanism.”

He is said to be the first modern man whose writings were also used to shape the modern Italian language.

Patriarch had a passion for rediscovering lost manuscripts of ancient Greece and Rome, and he translated Greek works into Latin.

Her canonical Irish poem is considered one of the greatest love poems in world literature, including Laura’s famous poems.

Renaissance art

The art of renaissance focuses on human beauty and nature. People were portrayed as living and expressing emotions.

Light and shadow techniques make the paintings more three-dimensional and realistic.

* Early renaissance

Massacio (1404-28) was the founder of the early Italian Renaissance painting, an important Florentine painter who composed his works in the mid and late 1420’s.

Her frescoes decorate the bronze chapel of the church of Santa Maria del Carmin in Florence.

Italian painting, sculpture, and architecture, natural style, and humanistic theories were also developed by Donatello and Alberti.

* High Renaissance

The height of the Renaissance is considered by art historians to be around 1495 to 1520.

The dominance of this time was:

Leonardo da Vinci

Leonardo da Vinci (1452 – 1519) has become a worldwide, cultural symbol and is considered one of the most talented people of all time.

Of his many great works, two of his most famous paintings are:

* Mona Lisa

Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece, the model for the Mona Lisa, was a real person. The Mona Lisa sculptor Lisa del Giocondo (1479 – 1542) was an Italian noblewoman and a member of the Gherardini family of Florence and Tuscany. She married Francisco del Giocondo, a wealthy Florentine silk merchant, who began painting for her new home, and to celebrate the birth of her second son, Andrea.

* Last dinner

The Last Supper is one of the most recognizable paintings in the Western world. This is a late 15th century mural painted by the refinery at the convent of Santa Maria delle Grazi in Milan, Italy.

This painting depicts the scene of Jesus’ last meal with his apostles from John’s Gospel, 13:21, and shows the anxiety that arose in the twelve apostles when Jesus announced that one of them would betray him.


Michelangelo de Lodovico Budonaroti Simoni (1475 – 1564) was an Italian sculptor, painter, architect and poet of the High Renaissance who was born in the Republic of Florence.

Michelangelo had a powerful influence on the development of Western art. His most famous works are the Pieta (Statue of St. Peter’s Basilica), his Statue of David, and his painting of the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican Palace.

Many of Michelangelo’s paintings, sculptures and works of architecture are among the most famous.

* Sistine Chapel

Michelangelo, under the patronage of Pope Julius II, painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel between 1508 and 1512, depicting magnificent scenes from the Bible.

Masterpieces are considered one of the major artistic achievements of human civilization.


Raphael Sanzio’s Urbino (1483 – 1520), better known as Raphael, was an Italian painter and architect.

Together with Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci, he creates a trinity of great masters of the higher renaissance.

His most famous paintings include Madonna in the Meadow, School of Athens, Sistine Madonna, The Transfiguration and Portrait of Baldasare Castiglion.

* Late renaissance

The pragmatism, pioneered by an Italian artist, Permigianino, emerged in the years following the Italian Renaissance.

It describes the style of painting and the bronze sculpture that emphasizes breaking all the traditional rules of proportion.

Girolamo Francisco Maria Mazola (1503 – 1540), also known as Permigianino (“smaller than Parma”), was an Italian Mannarist painter and printmaker active in Florence, Rome, Bologna and his hometown Parma.

His works include two large frescoes in a church in Parma and a palace in a nearby town, while some of his finest portraits are in the National Museum in Naples and in the gallery of Capodimonte, including a portrait of Gian Galezo Sanvitel and a young woman. Is Called antea.

Renaissance architecture

Renaissance architecture represented the “rebirth” of classical culture and replaced the medieval Gothic style.

The five classical columns used were three Greek, Doric, Ionic and Corinthian and Italian, Tuscan and composite.

The three most important figures in Renaissance architecture were Filippo Brunelleschi, Leon Batista Alberti and Andrea Paladio.

Filippo Brunelleschi (1377-1446), an Italian architect, designer and sculptor, is the founding father of Renaissance architecture. He is best known for designing the Duomo Dome in Florence, a masterpiece of Renaissance architecture.

The dome of Florence Cathedral has become a permanent feature of the Renaissance churches.

* St. Peter’s Basilica

St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican is one of the most famous works of Renaissance style architecture and the largest church in the world.

Besica was designed by Donato Bramante, Michelangelo, Carlo Maderno and Gian Lorenzo Bernini.

The end of the Renaissance

The end of the Renaissance was the result of many factors.

By the end of the 15th century, the Spanish, French and German invaders were fighting a series of wars in the Italian peninsula, causing disruption and instability in the Italian territories.

The Baroque period followed the Renaissance from the beginning of the 17th century to 1740.

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