This was especially true in Italy, where social mobility was much greater. Updated September 07, 2018.
Share Flipboard Email. In 1396 an official academic post for teaching Greek was created in Florence.
The courts and monasteries of Europe had long been repositories of manuscripts and texts, but a change in how scholars viewed them sparked a massive reappraisal of classical works in the Renaissance. Robert Wilde is a historian with a focus on early medieval Europe who has 15 years of freelance writing experience.
The spread of books also encouraged the study of literature itself, allowing new ideas to spread as cities and nations began establishing universities and other schools. Between the 14th and 17th centuries, art and science flourished as empires expanded and cultures mixed as never before.
This growing mercantile class sparked a financial industry to manage their wealth, generating additional economic and social growth. By contrast, the Great Italian Wars of the early 16th century allowed Renaissance ideas to spread to France as its armies invaded Italy repeatedly over 50 years. The printed page was more legible than the elaborate script of books written longhand.
A huge number of Greek texts and scholars arrived in Europe with the fall of Constantinople in 1453.
Humanist thinkers challenged the mindset of the previously dominant school of scholarly thought, Scholasticism, as well as the Catholic Church, allowing the new thinking to develop. During the Dark Ages, many classical European texts were lost or destroyed.
Finally, books could be mass produced for far less money and time than by the old handwritten methods. The end of the Hundred Years War between England and France in 1453 allowed Renaissance ideas to penetrate these nations as resources once consumed by war were funneled into the arts and sciences.
New libraries developed to facilitate access to old books. Those that survived were hidden in churches and monasteries of the Byzantine Empire or in capitals of the Middle East. As the Renaissance spread, church and European rulers used their wealth to adopt the new styles to keep pace. Continue Reading.
They attempted to legitimize themselves with conspicuous investment in and public flaunting of art and architecture. A new political and economic class emerged.
Printing became a viable industry, creating new jobs and innovations. It has been called the earliest expression of the Renaissance and is described as both a product and a cause of the movement.
As literacy spread and a middle class emerged, seeking out, reading, and spreading classical texts became commonplace.
While devastating, the plague left survivors better off financially and socially, with the same wealth spread among fewer people. Ideas once forgotten were now reawakened, as was interest in their authors.
The new artists needed wealthy patrons to support them, and Renaissance Italy was especially fertile ground. Periods of peace and war have been credited with allowing the Renaissance to spread. During the Renaissance, many of these texts were slowly reintroduced into Europe by merchants and scholars.