Essay Sample on The Renaissance's Emphasis on Human Achievement

Published: 2023-03-19
Essay Sample on The Renaissance's Emphasis on Human Achievement
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Inspiration Art Emotional intelligence
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 939 words
8 min read

In this paper, I discuss the Renaissance and how it came about, the impacts it had, and how it ended. To begin with, the Renaissance is a term used to refer to the rebirth of European culture, art politics, and the economy. According to Heller 2015, the revival happened from the 14th century to the 17th century, promoting the rediscovery of classical philosophy, literature, and art. The majority of great scientists, authors, and artists in human history existed during this era. Global exploration finally opened up new lands and cultures to European commerce. The Renaissance bridged the gap between the middle ages and modern-day civilization.

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To begin with, during the middle ages, Europeans began making advances in science and art. Struever 2015 in his book stated that a cultural movement called humanism began to gain thrust in Florence, Italy in the 14th century. Man was regarded as the center of his universe; hence, people should embrace achievements made by themselves in education, art literature, and science. Later on, in 1450, a printing press was invented known as Gutenberg that allowed printing and distribution of cultures and values as a means of communication throughout Europe (Lindow, 2017). Another example is that of wealthy citizens such as the Medici family who ruled Florence for more than sixty years and was famous for supporting budding artists.

For instance, Kanas 2019 in his book mentions artists like Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) who incorporated scientific principles, like anatomy, into their work so that they could recreate the human body with extraordinary precision. Da Vinci is also known as the Renaissance man who was responsible for the painting of "The Mona Lisa" and "The Last Supper." Astronomers Galileo and Descartes (1564-1642) described the moons of Jupiter and the rings of Saturn with the help of a telescope.

To add on, Nicolaus Copernicus (1473-1543), a Mathematician and astronomer, was the first man to propose that the sun was the center of the solar system and not the earth (Zerubaver, 2018). Renaissance art was characterized by natural influences and the reality of things on the ground. Techniques such as light, shadows, emotions were used by artists to express their feelings. While many artists used their talents to express their ideas, some explorers took to the sea. In the Age of Discovery period, several shipping routes to the Far East, India, and America were discovered. Examples of explorers include Christopher Columbus, who "discovered" the Caribbean and Central American islands. Amerigo Vespucci discovered South America, and the name "America" is from his name as an honor for his discovery. During this error, Europeans were able to question the role of the Roman Catholic Church. As education became widespread, many people were now beginning to think on their own and interpreting things as they knew it. The printing press allowed the Bible to be printed and distributed to people reading by themselves for the first time.

Moreover, in the 16th century, according to Bainton 2013, a German monk by the name Martin Luther led a revolutionary movement that caused split in the Catholic Church, creating the protestant church. Luther questioned the Catholic Church practices on whether they align with the teachings of the Bible. As a result of that, his followers split from the Roman Catholic Church and formed their protestant church. Luther's desire for people to feel closer to God made him translate the Bible into the language of the people for the first time. Luther hence became one of the most influential figures in the history of Christianity.

Later in 1545, laws were made whereby any inquisition or defying of the Catholic Church was punishable by death (Bainton, 2013). The law was to silence people and reduce on the protestant shifting that was created by Martin Luther. In terms of politics, the Italian cities were not united under one government. Each city ran itself separately from the rest in terms of monarchies, princedom, and oligarchies. However, Niccolo Machiavelli, an Italian author, took a new approach in his book "The Prince" by trying to understand the government and how it works. Countries in Europe, France, and Spain were unified under influential monarchs. One of the most substantial changes during that period was that religion was not part of governance. Humanism brought democracy as people started having different opinions in politics. By 17th century, Machiavelli 2008 states that the renaissance movement had died, giving way to a new age of enlightenment. Because of the great discoveries in the period of the Renaissance, today's world is full of modern works and ideas.

In conclusion, it is evident from the above research that many discoveries happened in the Renaissance period from artists who painted significant events to explorers who discovered places on earth that were unmapped. Martin Luther becomes significant by questioning Catholic practices hence the emergence of protestant churches. During this period we see humanism taking shape and many people being able to read and write. The people are also able to critically think and express their views as a form of democracy. I can say that the Renaissance period was the period of rediscovery by humans expanding their minds and being able to reason logically with the help of education.


Bainton, R. H. (2013). Here I stand A life of Martin Luther. Abingdon Press.

Heller, A. (2015) Renaissance man. Rout ledge.

Kanas, N. (2019). Star maps: history, artistry, and cartography. Springer Nature.

Lindow, J. (2017). The Renaissance Palace in Florence: magnificence and Splendor in Fifteenth-century Italy. Rout ledge.

Machiavelli, N. (2008). The prince. Hackett Publishing.

Struever, N. S. (2015). The language of history in the Renaissance: Rhetoric and historical consciousness in Florentine humanism (Vol. 1317). Princeton University Press.

Zerubaver, E. (2018). Terra incognita: the mental discovery of America. Rout ledge.

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