A Retrospective on Rebirth Essay

A Retrospective on Rebirth Essay

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There is a certain fascination in life when humans at a certain time become retrospective. The Renaissance or rebirth in Italy during the Quattrocento period epitomized this phenomenon. Throughout history and only during Renaissance have humans been able to embed a sense of urgency to relearn the ideas and culture of antiquity. Among the city-states on the Italian Peninsula, the Florentine Republic was on the verge of being the most prominent center of the Renaissance. Many contributing factors such as the influential families, the various guilds, politicians, and learned men propelled Florence to new heights of achievement; these include artistic expression, philosophical views—not seen since the days of Ancient Greece and Rome, diplomacy and government, advanced financial institutions, et al. However, it is important to point out that many remnants of the previous era hitherto were still in existence and profound as well—such as the ecclesiastical teaching of the Catholic Church—which was static—and a quasi-feudalistic mentality of the populace.
Concerning the Catholic Church, one must understand that it had excessive control over a significant portion of the populace of Europe at that time. It had virtual control over scholasticism, matrimony, finance, and every aspect of known activity; however, some individuals—such as political figures such like Cosimo de' Medici and scholars such as Marsilio Ficino—saw the potential of studying and utilizing the classics.
Resistance to change is a pertinent aspect of human nature—regardless of the era. . Individuals or groups of individuals who saw that things as they were could not provide adequate answers began to ask many questions. The humanists of the Renaissance were in a positi...

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...ssirer, Ernst, Paul Oskar Kristeller and Jr, John Herman Herman, The Renaissance Philosophy of Man: Petrarca, Valla, Ficino, Pico, Pomponazzi, Vives (Phoenix Books). Trans. Josephine L. Burroughs. Chicago: University Of Chicago Press, 1956.
Copenhaver, Brian P. and Charles B. Schmitt. Renaissance Philosophy (A History of Western Philosophy). Oxford: Oxford University Press, USA, 1992.
Hankins, James, ed. The Cambridge Companion to Rennaisance Philosophy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007.
Harris, R. Baine. The Significance of Neoplatonism (Studies in Neoplatonism ; V. 1). Norfolk: State University of New York Press, 1976.
Kent, Dale. Cosimo de` Medici and the Florentine Renaissance. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2000.
Matthews, Roy T., F. DeWitt Platt and Thomas F. X. Noble. The Western Humanities. 7th. Vol. 2. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2010. 2 vols.

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