Regents PrepGlobal History: Science & Technology

The Renaissance was a time of creativity and change in Europe. It was a rebirth of cultural and intellectual pursuits after the stagnation of the Middle Ages. The Renaissance produced a golden age with many achievements in art, literature, and science, but most importantly, it produced a new concept of how people thought of themselves, each other, and the world around them.  The Renaissance was centered in Italy during the 1300s, before spreading throughout Europe in the 1500 and 1600s.

Art & Architecture
Renaissance artists and architects produced some of the finest works in all the world.  While religious art was still very prominent, new styles were developed.  Humanist ideas, and the concept of realism, was reflected in many art forms.   Artists such as Leonardo Da Vinci studied anatomy, while others used live models to better catch the human form.  Artists also learned the rules of perspective allowing them to give their works a 3 dimensional appearance.
Architects revived many ancient Greek and Roman styles, such as the use of columns, domes, and arches.

Michelangelo: Sculptor, painter, poet, engineer, and architect.  Famous works include the mural on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, and the sculpture of the biblical character David.
Leonardo Da Vinci: A true Renaissance man interested in a variety of subjects.  He was a painter, sculptor, engineer, and inventor.  Famous works include paintings Mona Lisa and The Last Supper.  Also left a variety of sketches showing flying machines and underwater boats centuries before the invention of planes and submarines.

The most important technological innovation of the time was the printing press.  The technology to make this possible was introduced from China in the 1300s.  By the 1400s, movable type was being used in Europe as Johann Gutenberg began printing the Bible in everyday language. Soon millions of books were in circulation.  This invention led to a higher literacy rate among people, and helped with the spreading of Renaissance ideas.