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At the turn of the 15th—16th cents. German imperial scholarship claimed a translatio studii parallel with the Carolingian translatio imperii. Later German humanists such as Melanchthon were usually advocates of the Reformation. Greek studies flourished especially in 16th-cent. The English Renaissance was influenced by the Italian indirectly, through France, Burgundy, and the Netherlands , as well as directly. From about , however, the chief force in English humanism was the concept of pietas literata , or evangelical humanism, associated with Erasmus. England produced no humanist scholar of the first rank, More's Utopia being the finest Latin achievement of its early Tudor phase.

Many classical and humanist works were translated into the vernacular, however. Machiavelli 's Prince , known in the s, was printed in Italian at London in the s, as were works by the philosopher Giordano Bruno. Greek studies were notable, from the s especially in association with the Reformation. Erasmus' Greek New Testament with Latin translation —19 was used by Martin Luther for his German New Testament : William Tyndale used both for his English version —34 ; later reformed English versions, including the Authorized , kept much of Tyndale's language.

The visual arts and architecture of Renaissance England remained predominantly traditional, in spite of the presence of Italian sculptors and of north European painters such as Hans Holbein the Younger, Rubens, and Van Dyck. The first English architect and designer of international stature was Inigo Jones , the Palladian — Music similarly remained traditional until the flowering of the Italian fashion — The Renaissance in Scotland was notable for logical and theological studies, and for its connections with French humanism.

Its earlier stages produced three of the finest poets of their time in Robert Henryson d. George Buchanan —82 won a lasting European reputation as humanist, poet, and historian; he was also tutor to the young James VI and I. Hale, J. New York , ; Skinner, Q. Renaissance , Renascence. It is also a convenient label for the style of architecture that developed in, and was characteristic of, that period from the time of Brunelleschi in Florence early C15 to the beginnings of Mannerism c. Indeed, it was referred to as maniera all'antica , and the style was codified by Alberti in De re aedificatoria begun around , drawing on the exemplary work of Vitruvius.

In architecture the Renaissance includes the High Renaissance c. Elsewhere in Europe, Renaissance architecture tended to acquire Italian Renaissance motifs, either from printed sources or from the observations of travellers, but each country or region produced buildings that looked un-Italian: German, French, Flemish, Spanish, and English the latter associated with Elizabethan and Jacobean architecture Renaissance styles all had distinct flavours.

English, Flemish, German, Polish, and Scandinavian Renaissance buildings of C16 and early C17 fall into the Northern Renaissance category, but the infusion of Mannerism gave French Renaissance architecture a different flavour. Only in the early C17 was uncorrupted Renaissance architecture, firmly based on Italian prototypes, introduced in England see Paesschen by Inigo Jones , an event that was enormously influential in C18, first in England, and then elsewhere. There are some e. Osborne ; Jane Turner Renaissance the revival of art and literature under the influence of classical models in the 14th—16th centuries; the culture and style of art and architecture developed during this era.

The Renaissance is generally regarded as beginning in Florence, where there was a revival of interest in classical antiquity. Important early figures are the writers Petrarch , Dante, and Boccaccio and the painter Giotto. Classical techniques and styles were studied in Rome by the sculptor Donatello as well as by the architects Bramante and Brunelleschi, who worked on the theory of perspective, which was developed in the innovative frescoes and paintings of Masaccio.

The period from the end of the 15th century has become known as the High Renaissance , when Venice and Rome began to share Florence' importance and Botticelli , Cellini, Raphael, Leonardo da Vinci , and Michelangelo were active. Renaissance thinking spread to the rest of Europe from the early 16th century, and was influential for the next hundred years.

Renaissance man a person with many talents or interests, especially in the humanities, supposedly exhibiting the virtues of an idealized man of the Renaissance. Renaissance Fr. Late 15th-century Italian scholars used the word to describe the revival of interest in classical learning. It was helped by the fall of Constantinople to the Ottoman Turks in , which resulted in the transport of classical texts to Italy.

In Germany , the invention of a printing press with moveable type assisted the diffusion of the new scholarship. In religion, the spirit of questioning led to the Reformation. In politics, the Renaissance saw the rise of assertive sovereign states — Spain , Portugal , France , and England — and the expansion of Europe beyond its own shores, with the building of trading empires in Africa, the East Indies , and America. The growth of a wealthy urban merchant class led to a tremendous flowering of the arts. See also Renaissance architecture ; Renaissance art ; Renaissance music Cite this article Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

In mus. Although the term is well established in the writings of historians, its usefulness has been challenged. Indeed, there has grown up around the concept of the Renaissance an extensive controversy that sometimes threatens completely to divert the attention of scholars from the historical facts. In part, this controversy is simply an acute form of the general problem of periodization in history. The concept of the Renaissance, however, arouses particularly strong opposition because it involves a disparagement of the preceding period, the Middle Ages medium aevum , from which culture presumably had to be awakened.

The idea of a rebirth of literature or of the arts originated in the period itself. Petrarch in the fourteenth century hoped to see an awakening of culture, and many later writers expressed their conviction that they were actually witnessing such an awakening in their own time. Latin was generally the language used by cultivated men to discuss such matters, but no single Latin term or phrase became the standard name for the whole cultural epoch.

One of the earliest historians of philosophy in the modern sense, Johann Jakob Brucker, in referred to the Renaissance only as the "restoration of letters" restauratio literanum , and wrote of the "recovery of philosophy" restitutio philosophiae : Even in an earlier German work he used such Latin phrases. Scholars who wrote in Latin never used rinascentia as the name for the cultural epoch as a whole. It was the French word renaissance that finally acquired this status and was then adopted or adapted into other languages.

During the seventeenth century, and fitfully before, French scholars used the phrase renaissance des lettres for the humanists' restitutio bonarum literarum , taking over in the process the humanist periodization of history.

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Other writers translated the Latin phrase or phrases into their own vernacular: Edward Gibbon spoke of the "restoration of the Greek letters in Italy," while Heinrich Ritter, in his history of philosophy , remarked that the Wiederherstellung der Wissenschaften derived its name from philology. Various French authors used the term renaissance in titles of their works before Jules Michelet devoted one of his volumes on sixteenth-century France to la Renaissance However, Michelet gave only the sketchiest characterization of the period, and hardly deserves to be credited if indeed any one person can be with having "invented" the concept of the Renaissance.

Michelet did coin one memorable phrase: He remarked that two things especially distinguished the Renaissance from previous periods — "the discovery of the world, the discovery of man. At his hands, the concept of the Renaissance received what was to become its classic formulation; all subsequent discussion of the concept invariably focuses upon Burckhardt's description of the essential features of life during the Renaissance.

Burckhardt, taking the term in its narrow sense of a literary revival of antiquity, conceded that there had been earlier "renaissances" in Europe; but he insisted that a renaissance in this sense would never have conquered the Western world had it not been united with the "already-existing spirit of the Italian people" italienischen Volksgeist.

Not until the time of Petrarch, so Burckhardt held, did the European spirit awake from the slumber of the Middle Ages , when the world and man lay "undiscovered. The relation of the Renaissance to the era that preceded it has been much studied because defenders of medieval culture quickly came to the rescue of their period, stressing its continuity with, or even its superiority to, the Renaissance.

However, little has been done to clarify the relation of the Renaissance to the Enlightenment. This is rather surprising, for there was an issue that ran straight through the thought of both these eras: "Can we modern men hope to equal or even excel the achievements of antiquity? However, much the same attitude as Fontenelle's is found in the De Disciplinis of the Renaissance humanist Juan Luis Vives , who wrote in the early sixteenth century. The Renaissance itself had championed the moderns even before modern science had arisen to prove their case. Renaissance confidence in men's powers was based on art and literature rather than on science, but it was strong nevertheless.

Men could respect classical excellence and yet strive to outdo the ancients in every field, including vernacular literature. Each choice represents the selection of a particular field as central in the history of the period: art, architecture, religion, politics, economics, trade, or learning.


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In certain fields it is hard to maintain any sharp break between conditions in, let us say, and those in However, few students of the history of art or of literature are prepared to deny completely the start of new trends in the fourteenth century at least in Italy. In literature, Petrarch's enthusiasm for Greek antiquity must surely be accepted as inaugurating, in the eyes of men in the fourteenth century, a fresh start.

In painting, there is little hesitation about ascribing a similar place to Petrarch's contemporary, Giotto; this ascription dates from the earliest attempt at a history of art, that of Giorgio Vasari No such figures can plausibly be singled out to mark new beginnings in economic or political history. Difficulties also surround the choice of an event to mark the end of the Renaissance: the sacking of Rome in , the hardening of the Counter-Reformation via the Council of Trent in , the burning of Giordano Bruno in , or Galileo Galilei's setting of experimental physics on its true path around — any of these might be selected.

Once again, however, a periodization that is useful in one field may prove useless in another field. Generally speaking, the era from to will include most of the developments commonly dealt with under the heading "Renaissance. The shifting locale of the Renaissance presents problems similar to those of its chronological limits. Burckhardt's description focused exclusively on Italy; he implied that the Renaissance, after it had been taken over by the Italian Volksgeist , moved on to the rest of Europe.

The movement to France is usually said to have resulted from the French invasion of Italy in , which gave the French nobility their first glimpse of the glories of the Italian Renaissance. No comparable event can be singled out for the bringing of the Italian Renaissance to England, unless it be the return from Italy to their native land of the classical scholars William Grocyn , Thomas Linacre , and John Colet in the last decade of the fifteenth century, or perhaps Desiderius Erasmus's arrival there about the same time.

Clearly England did enjoy a renaissance, but it is not easy to fix its dates: English literary historians prefer to discuss the Elizabethan age or the age of the Tudors, thus sidestepping the question of the relation of the English Renaissance to that of the Continent. Still less clear is the coming of the Renaissance to the German lands: German historians treat the sixteenth century as the "time of the Reformation," and tend to discuss the Renaissance chiefly in terms of its impact upon individual reformers.

The Renaissance is sometimes called the "age of adventure. It was the shutting off of Venetian trade routes through the Mediterranean by the Turks that forced Europeans to search for new routes to the East, not a new desire for scientific knowledge of geography. The Spanish conquistadores may have thirsted for glory, but such a thirst was characteristic of medieval knights as well as of Renaissance humanists. The motives of the Franciscan missionaries were clearly religious and medieval in spirit. Moreover, in the field of domestic trade, the resurgence of economic activity in the fifteenth century that formed the basis for the cultural developments of the Renaissance was less a matter of suddenly effective acquisitiveness than of normal recovery from the slump brought about by the Black Death in Historians may without hesitation ascribe a rebirth of classical knowledge to the Renaissance period.

The discovery of old manuscripts and the invention of printing combined to make the heritage of ancient Greece and Rome available to a far wider audience. The humanists of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries discovered and preserved many ancient texts that had been neglected for centuries. Of these perhaps the most significant from a philosophical point of view was Lucretius's De Rerum Natura , but many other newly discovered texts helped to enrich men's general familiarity with antiquity and to present in full view the setting in which Greek and Roman philosophy originated.

The collecting of manuscripts could be indulged in only by noblemen or well-to-do scholars, but the invention of printing made possible a broader social base for intellectual interests. With the production of vast numbers of newly discovered texts, self-education became a real possibility, as did institutional education on a broad scale. Peter Ramus in France and Philipp Melanchthon in Germany urged the educating of the people, chiefly with the idea of promoting intelligent Christian piety.

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Developments in technology and science indirectly provided material for philosophical reflection. The increased use of firearms and cannon in war, for example, made necessary the mathematical study of ballistics; and the scientific work of Benedetti and Galileo drew upon the practical experience of foundries and arsenals.

However, Renaissance philosophy of science still took its cue largely from Aristotle: Francis Bacon , dissatisfied with Aristotelian logic and methodology of science, found a replacement not in the actual practices of mechanics and craftsmen but in the rhetorical method derived from Aristotle and applied to the questioning of Nature.

The most spectacular and far-reaching scientific development during the Renaissance was the heliocentric theory advanced by Nicolas Copernicus, who found hints about Pythagorean cosmology in ancient works. The Copernican theory was surely the most significant revolution ever to take place in science. Far less conspicuous, but still important, were the developments in pure and applied mathematics. Modern notation such as the use of the "equals" sign began to be adopted, bringing with it the possibility of greater attention to logical form.

There have been many attempts, beginning with Michelet and Burckhardt, to capture the mind or spirit of Renaissance man. All such attempts seem doomed to failure, for they are bound to oversimplify complex social facts. We may, however, single out four sets of social ideals that were characteristic of various groups during the Renaissance. The ideals of the feudal nobility, medieval in origin, persisted through the Renaissance among the ruling class, although they underwent considerable refinement.

The rude military virtues of camp and field gave way to the graces of the court, which were set forth most admirably in Baldassare Castiglione's book The Courtier , one of the most influential treatises on manners ever written. In Castiglione's ideal courtier we may recognize the ancestor of our "gentleman. In the heroic life idealized by the feudal tradition, love of glory and concern for one's reputation were strong social motives.

The humanists' thirst for glory, which Burckhardt emphasized, merely continues this concern but applies it to the achievements of a nonwarrior class, the "knights of the pen. Few social theorists extolled the virtues of commercial activity until Martin Luther stressed the sanctity of all callings, provided they benefited one's fellow men.

Religion provided the second set of ideals, which centered upon moral salvation and involved a willingness to relinquish the world and all its goods. This mood, exacerbated in some individuals by the terror of imminent death or of eternal damnation, continued unabated throughout the Renaissance; and the entire Reformation movement has been called the "last great wave of medieval mysticism. A genuine tension often resulted from the opposing pulls of these religious values and of secular attitudes and this-worldliness: Aristotelian philosophers as well as humanists felt this tension during the Renaissance.

A third set of ideals, that of the ancient sage Platonic or Stoic , was consciously adopted by Renaissance humanists as an adjunct to Christian exhortation, for many of them felt that Christians could learn much from pagan expounders of virtue. Rarely, if ever, did a humanist attempt to replace the Christian ideal altogether: Burckhardt undoubtedly overstressed the "paganism" of the humanists. Finally, there was the ideal of a return to nature, a flight from the complexities of sophisticated urban life to pastoral pleasures. This theme has ancient antecedents in the poetry of Theocritus and Vergil, but it emerges into new prominence with Petrarch, who also stressed the benefits of solitude.

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Passive delight in the beauties of nature can hardly ever be totally lacking in human beings, of course, but during the Renaissance we find an interest in such activities as gardening, the collecting of strange plants and animals, and strolling through woods and fields. Petrarch's famous excursion to the summit of Mont Ventoux turned into an occasion for Christian self-reproach, to be sure, but his letters also abound in references to his gardening and to lone promenades in the countryside near Vaucluse.

A major role in the culture of the Renaissance was played by the humanists. All sorts of people call themselves "humanists" today, but in the early days of the Renaissance the name had a clear occupational meaning. During the fourteenth century, the traditional subjects of grammar, rhetoric, and poetry had begun to be called, after a phrase of Cicero, the studio humanitatis. The term umanista was coined on the analogy of artista , also a product of university slang to designate a teacher of these subjects in Italian universities.

Such studies were by no means new in the fourteenth century; in fact, the humanists were the heirs of a less ambitious but old and respectable medieval profession, that of the dictator or teacher of the art of letter-writing ars dictaminis. The Renaissance teachers of "humanities" placed a greater emphasis on ancient models than had the dictatores , but their teaching had much the same; objective. Their students often became official letter-writers or speechmakers for popes and princes. Coluccio Salutati and Leonardo Bruni, two of the most influential humanists of the fifteenth century, were chancellors of Florence.

The study of Greek philosophy owes much to these two men. Renaissance humanists did not propound a distinct philosophy but took over from Cicero and Aulus Gellius the ancient ideal of a civilized and urbane way of life that could be formed through acquaintance with Greek literature. With such a program in mind, the humanists began to concern themselves with moral and political philosophy, and this brought them into conflict with the philosophers who taught ethics or politics in the universities.

The humanists regarded the Aristotelian Schoolmen as derelict in the performance of their duties, since their teaching so the humanists claimed made no differences in the lives of students. The scholastic teachers, in return, regarded the humanists as dilettantes and upstarts, meddling in subjects beyond their depth. The feud of humanists with philosophers began with Petrarch's invective against the secular Aristotelians, the so-called Averroists of his day, and continued through the seventeenth century. We still tend to see Renaissance Aristotelianism and medieval Scholasticism as well through the eyes of these Renaissance humanists.

Their bias has crept into most histories of philosophy, largely because the first writers of histories of philosophy shared some of the humanist attitudes. One such early historian was Brucker, whose Critical History of Philosophy — has already been mentioned. Brucker presented the Renaissance as a time when human thought emerged slowly into the light a standard metaphor from the tiresome labyrinths of medieval Scholasticism. He divided his treatment into various sections, dealing with schools of Greek philosophy that were "restored" during the Renaissance.

In spite of his scorn for "more recent Aristotelian-scholastic philosophers," Brucker had great respect for the philosophers who followed the "genuine philosophy of Aristotle": Pietro Pomponazzi , Simon Porta, Jacopo Zabarella , and others. Few modern historians of philosophy pay much attention to these writers.

They do, however, characteristically devote lengthy sections to Paracelsus, Jakob Boehme , Robert Fludd , and other "theosophers. Whatever his own philosophical competence may have been, Brucker had one clear advantage over most later historians: He had actually read the Renaissance writers he discussed. Much of Renaissance philosophy still awaits reevaluation based upon such actual reading of texts. The general framework of Brucker's treatment of Renaissance philosophy remains a useful way of dealing with most of the thought of the period.

The various sects of Greek philosophy were indeed "reborn" during the Renaissance; few of them escaped some sort of revival. There was even what might be called a genuine rebirth of Aristotle, if we mean by this what Brucker probably meant: an Aristotelianism based directly upon the Greek texts rather than upon Latin or Arabic commentators. It cannot be too strongly emphasized that the main stream of philosophical inquiry during the Renaissance continued to be Aristotelian.

The terms employed in philosophical discussion, the problems posed, and the characteristic solutions remain, in basic outline, Aristotelian. Almost all Renaissance philosophers show the influence of their Aristotelian school training, even when they are trying most strenuously to break the shackles of that tradition. The technical terms of philosophy such as propositio, entitas, realis, materia, forma, essentia and many others originated or became naturalized in the Aristotelian school-tradition, and persisted even in the writings of the most daring innovators, such as Bruno.

The Aristotelian tradition, for reasons already in part suggested, remains the least known and most maligned of all Renaissance schools. Platonism took on new life during the Renaissance, after having been known for centuries chiefly through Aristotle's attacks on it. There was more acquaintance with Plato during the medieval period than is generally recognized, but it is still true that Marsilio Ficino 's translations into Latin first published in gave the main impetus to the spread of Plato's doctrines. Later editions of Plato often contained Ficino's translations of Proclus and Porphyry, together with his own commentaries, which were strongly colored by his Neoplatonism.

Hence, the Platonism that emerged during the Renaissance cannot be distinguished easily from Neoplatonism, for it tends to be otherworldly and religious in tone. The cultural influence of Florentine Platonism emanated from the famous academy founded by Ficino in direct imitation of Plato's school. The society that grouped itself around Ficino aimed at moral improvement and resembled in character certain lay religious societies common in Italy at that time. The whole movement of natural religion was set in motion by Florentine Platonism, as was the renewed study of Pauline theology by such men as John Colet.

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Florentine Platonism is well known, by name at least, to most students of the Renaissance. Much less well known is a tradition of reconciling Plato with Aristotle, which also found expression during the period. Byzantine scholars had brought with them to Italy an old battle over the superiority of Plato or Aristotle. During the late Renaissance this battle resolved itself into a truce, with many books written to show that Plato and Aristotle agreed on fundamentals and differed only on words or nonessentials. Only a few late Renaissance thinkers, such as Justus Lipsius and Guillaume du Vair, committed themselves explicitly to Stoicism, but the influence of Stoic philosophy may be seen at work directly and indirectly largely via Cicero, Seneca, and the Greek commentators on Aristotle even during the early Renaissance.

Pomponazzi's rigorous moral doctrine, for example, is strongly tinged with Stoic attitudes. Rejected with horror by medieval thinkers, who saw him through the eyes of the Church Fathers, Epicurus began to be more sympathetically known as a result of humanist activity in the fifteenth century. Previous to this time, anyone who believed that the soul perished with the body was called an Epicurean, whether he held to any other Epicurean tenet or not. Now it was no longer possible to apply this label so casually.

Lucretius's great poem won immediate favor because of its sturdy poetic qualities, but, until Pierre Gassendi in the seventeenth century, no one adopted the system of Epicurus in its entirety. Nevertheless, Epicurean influence prior to Gassendi's time did foster a climate less hostile to the concepts of pleasure and utility. The direct influence of philosophical skepticism in a technical sense began with the first publication of Sextus Empiricus in , from which time skepticism exercised an important influence upon European thought and literature.

The religious factionalism or warfare of the sixteenth century had brought about a widespread distrust of dogmatism and fanaticism on the part of such sophisticated minds as Erasmus and Michel Eyquem de Montaigne, whose writings may have contributed to the growth of that spirit of toleration usually associated with the Enlightenment. The Renaissance was immensely receptive perhaps more so than the Middle Ages to occult and secret lore of all kinds, especially if it claimed to come from the most ancient times and to incorporate the wisdom of the Egyptians, Chaldeans, and Hebrews.

When the fashion for reviving ancient thought was at its height, the spurious treatises of "thrice-great Hermes," the so-called Hermetic writings, enjoyed great prestige and blended easily with various other secret teachings, such as that of the Jewish Kabbalah. Toward the end of the Renaissance, the vogue for reviving past philosophies began to subside: Instead, there began to appear "new" philosophies and "new" systems of thought proudly announced as such, for instance, the Nova de Universis Philosophia offered by Francesco Patrizzi or the Great Instauration explicitly opposed to a "restoration" of Francis Bacon.

However, most of these efforts at original creation clearly bear the stamp of some ancient sect or sects of philosophy.

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Even Nicholas of Cusa , the most original systematic mind of the Renaissance, could be called and indeed once called himself a Pythagorean. Philosophers hardly ever make a complete break with the past, even when they most loudly claim to be doing so. The great merit of the Renaissance was that thinkers learned what they could from the school of Athens and brought what they learned to bear with fresh vigor upon the problems of human life.

No individual completely typifies his age, yet it may be useful to focus for a moment on the way in which the various philosophical traditions converged in a single person. As a case history of this sort, we may take the thought of Girolamo Cardano — , an Italian medical man and mathematician. Cardano lived in the late, mature stage of the Renaissance, when the dialogues of Plato and the works of Aristotle were known in their entirety, as were Galen and Hippocrates. The Greek commentators on Aristotle were just being recovered and translated.

These works were well known at the universities where Cardano studied: Pavia, a stronghold of humanist learning, and Padua, a center of science and medicine. At Padua the biological and logical aspects of Aristotle's thought were stressed in connection with medical training. Cardano studied under Joannes Montesdoch, a Spaniard, whom he mentions in his writings. There were quite a few such Iberian philosophers studying and teaching in Italy at this time.

Aristotelian philosophy was clearly a common European heritage and knew no national boundaries. A considerable number of Renaissance philosophers were, like Cardano, medical men, and of these quite a few dabbled in mathematics Galen had urged them to study mathematics for the sake of the training it gave them in sound demonstration.

Cardano wrote works on medicine, astrology, and mathematics, but his philosophical reputation must rest primarily on two works in natural philosophy: De Subtilitate Libri XXI On subtlety; and its sequel, De Rerum Varietate On the variety of things; De Subtilitate attempted a total reconstruction of natural philosophy. Aristotle's physical system was to be threatened dramatically by Copernican heliocentrism, which upset the conceptual scheme on which Aristotle's analysis of motion was based. This threat was not explicitly posed, however, until the next century, with Galileo's Two Chief World Systems.

A Renaissance philosopher such as Cardano did not specifically base his criticisms of Aristotle on the findings of Copernicus or Vesalius: Instead, he reproached Aristotle in a general way for having built up "certain general propositions that experiment teaches to be false. This observation would apply with equal force to most Renaissance nature philosophers, few of whom gave more than perfunctory attention to epistemology.

In developing his own system, Cardano started out by taking as his central category something called "subtlety," which he described as "a certain reason by which sensibilia are with difficulty comprehended by the sense, and intelligibilia by the intellect. For example, Cardano retains the notion of elements but reduces their number from the traditional Aristotelian four to three by eliminating fire, which he classifies as an "accident. The last addition puts Cardano into the class of hylozoists, those who believe that all matter is somehow animated, a rather characteristic Renaissance doctrine borrowed largely from Neoplatonism.

Cardano's writings must have appealed to his Renaissance readers: They are lively, detailed, and full of medical and factual information and misinformation. His style contrasts sharply with the dry, logically structured argument of the medievals, which can still be found early in the century in the work of a man such as John Major.


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  • Cardano obviously delighted in mathematics and in machinery, in this respect, at least, anticipating Galileo in the generation that followed. The amount of superstitious nonsense incorporated in Cardano's work, however, is still distressingly high, and one can easily understand the impatience of later figures such as Gassendi, Thomas Hobbes , and Galileo with their Renaissance predecessors.

    This illustrates a general trend in scholarship: The information current today about many Renaissance thinkers, especially the Italians, comes to us by way of generally hostile French writers of the seventeenth century Pierre Bayle is exceptional in his lack of polemical intent. Or again, Cardano's passion for gambling could be presented as a despicable and mercenary motive for his interest in games of chance. But a less censorious approach, such as that of Oystein Ore in his Cardano, the Gambling Scholar Princeton, NJ, , will give Cardano the credit he deserves for anticipating the modern conception of probability as the proportion of favorable outcomes to total possible outcomes.

    Finally, the mere fact that there was enough interest in Cardano's thought still lingering in seventeenth-century France to justify the publication of his entire work Opera Omnia , 10 vols. This comment could also be made of many other Renaissance philosophers who continued to be read in the seventeenth century, even if not all students of that century were as receptive to Renaissance thought as was Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz.

    See also Florentine Academy ; Hermeticism ; Humanism. Everyone interested in the Renaissance should begin by reading two masterpieces of historical writing: Jacob Burckhardt, Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy 1st German ed. These works complement each other: Huizinga deals with France and the Low Countries ; Burckhardt deals only with Italy and apologizes for having even mentioned Rabelais.

    No works of comparable standing in cultural history exist for the Renaissance as it affected England, the German lands, or other European countries.

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    On the concept of the Renaissance, see Wallace K. For general historical background, Edward M. I, The Renaissance, — Cambridge, U. On humanism, two older works are still basic: Georg Voigt, Die Widerbelebung des classischen Alterthums , 2 vols. Berlin, , and J. Sandys, A History of Classical Scholarship , 3 vols. Coming more particularly to philosophy, a useful guide is Paul O. Kristeller and J. Randall Jr. Two leading mid-twentieth-century historians of Renaissance philosophy are Paul O.

    Kristeller and Eugenio Garin. Kristeller's work is solidly based on careful reading of the sources. Garin has dealt with philosophers of the Italian Renaissance extensively in his La filosofia , 2 vols. Milan, , and has compiled useful anthologies, including Filosofi italiani del quattrocento Florence, and Il rinascimento italiano Milan, Paris: Librairie d'Argences, On Spain see Carlo Giacon, La seconda scolastica , 3 vols. Milan: Fratelli Bocca, — On Italy, besides Garin's works, see Giuseppe Saitta, Il pensiero italiano nell'umanesimo e nel rinascimento , 3 vols.

    The Renaissance is a favorite topic for symposia, and the results are sometimes useful: See Tinsley Helton, ed. Two specialized studies are Carlo Angeleri, Il problema religiosa del rinascimento Florence, , and Georg Weise, L'ideale eroico del rinascimento e le sue premesse umanistiche Naples: Edizioni Scientifiche Italiane, Artz, Frederick B. Renaissance Humanism — Coates, Willson Havelock, Hayden V. White, and J. Salwyn Schapiro. New York: McGraw-Hill, — Kahn, Victoria.

    Rhetoric, Prudence, and Skepticism in the Renaissance. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, King, Margaret L. Burlington, VT: Ashgate, Kristeller, Paul Oskar, and Mooney, Michael, eds. Renaissance Thought and Its Sources. New York: Columbia University Press, Mahoney, Edward P. Moyer, Ann E. Palisca, Claude V. Humanism in Italian Renaissance Musical Thought. Parkinson, G. The Renaissance and Seventeenth Century Rationalism. New York: Routledge, Stinger, Charles L. Trinkaus, Charles. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, The term used to designate the period of European history beginning in Italy in the 14th century and extending into the 16th.

    Since it originated in connection with what was considered a "rebirth" of letters and art, those fields have often been emphasized in the study of the Renaissance, and some would prefer to confine the term to such usage. There was, however, a general cultural transition at this time, and historians therefore have concerned themselves also with the period's political, religious, economic, and social changes.

    They have felt justified in using the term Renaissance to refer to the transitional period. In France, England, and Germany, the movement in question began in the latter half of the 15th century rather than in the 14th. The Renaissance notion of woman : a study in the fortunes of scholasticism and medical science in European intellectual life by Ian Maclean Publication Date: NOTE: An appendix lists all known medieval gynecological texts in Latin and the western European vernacular languages.

    Conrad et al. Publication Date: The Western Medical Tradition: by W. Bynum, et al. The 'Hippocratic' corpus : content and context by Elizabeth M. Craik Publication Date: It is also in charge of forming the vital spirit in the left ventricle of the heart. Skip to main content Skip to table of contents. Encyclopedia of Renaissance Philosophy Living Edition.

    Renaissance Philosophy and Medicine

    Contents Search. Innate Heat. Living reference work entry First Online: 04 February How to cite. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves. This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access. Primary Literature Aristotle De generatione animalium, ed. Drossaart Lulofs.