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Interpreting Modern History: Revival Of The Appreciation Of Art

998 words - 4 pages

Modern history was the abandonment of European confinement. I understand modern history as being the revival of the appreciation of art, ideas, and moral values known as the Renaissance. During and before this time period, the majority of the European population was deeply embedded and blinded by the church. It is my understanding that Modern history is comprised of a sequence of events. It was not limited to specific dates, it was a continuous cycle of religious and political strives for power, establishment, and scientific discovery. The events, formerly mentioned, that took place were the Renaissance, the Reformation, and Exploration.
The first of the sequenced events is known as the Renaissance. The Renaissance was the period in Europe from 1350 to 1550. It is one of the few eras in Western history that named itself. My understanding is that it was a cultural and scholarly movement that emphasized the rekindling and significance of texts and ideologies from antiquity. In my opinion, one of the most influential figures during the Renaissance was Francesco Petrarca, commonly known as Petrarch. It was through his ideology, “Humanism,” that I really began to comprehend what the Renaissance was really all about. (Backman, 2013)
The Renaissance combined the elements of antiquity along with political, social, and economic motivations to create a widespread movement. Over the course of the fourteenth century, the old social and political structures broke down, allowing new concepts to arise. The cultural elite found that those concepts could be used for their own elevation. Italy was not one nation; it was comprised of various city-states. All of which were competing for civic pride, trade and wealth.
Politically, Italy was different from the rest of Europe. While elsewhere monarchs ruled their kingdoms as God’s representatives on earth, most of the Italian peninsula consisted of city-states in which power was shared between a greater or lesser number of the inhabitants. The economic supremacy of each city-state was dependent on its location along eastern and western trade routes. Each state was similar to a political unit that competed both politically and methodically with its neighbors. There were five main powers of political units that dominated Italy’s affairs. Two being monarchs, and the other three being city-states in northern Italy. What I perceived is that up until mid fourteenth century, Italy’s political dealings were unorganized. It wasn’t until the middle of the fifteenth century that some semblance of order was achieved due to the increasing development of centralized government. Restoration of internal order finally led to diplomatic balance in Italy. (Backman, 2013)
The second sequence of events is known as the Reformation. The Protestant Reformation took place during the 16th-century. It was a European Christian movement that began as an effort to reform the Catholic Church and ultimately led to the establishment of Protestant...

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