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Italian rebirth in the 1300-1500’s Renaissance The word itself means “rebirth”. This period of time was marked by the return to the ancient greek and roman ways of doing things. 3 characteristics of the Renaissance 1. Urban Society 2. Age of recovery 3. Individual Ability Urban Society • City states become the center of life • Political, economic, and social • Wealth becomes a motivator to create new possibilities with the enjoyment of material items. Age of Recovery The 14th century was very harsh with many disasters. • The Plague • Decline of church power • Political instability. The Renaissance marked the period when Italian thinkers became aware of their Roman past. They worked past these problems to rebuild what was once the great empire. Individual Ability “Men can do all things if they will” Leon Battista Alberti • Italians began to believe that a well-rounded, universal person was capable of achievements in many areas. • Leonardo da Vinci was perfect example. • • • • • Painter Sculptor Architect Inventor mathematician Italian States Milan- North Italy at the crossroads of main trade routes • One of the richest city-states in Italy • Francisco Sforza conquered Milan after the death of the last Visconti ruler. Set up a tax system to generate revenue for Government. Venice- Along the Adriatic Sea. Gateway to Asia • International power because of location and trade network • Had an elected leader called a Doge Italian States Florence- located in the region of Tuscany, North-Central Italy • Cultural center of Italy during the 1400’s. • Led by the Medici family. Cosimo and later Lorenzo • A preacher named Girolamo Savonarola led a small rebellion against the Medici’s because of a decline in the economy. Savonarola angered the pope and was put to death in 1498, putting the Medici family back in power. Italian Wars French King Charles VIII led an army into Italy in 1494. The Italians turned to the Spanish for help. For 30 years, Italy was the battleground for a war between the Spanish and the French The Spanish destroyed Rome in 1527 demanding money for their help, ending the war and giving Spain a lot of control in Italy Politics Niccolo Machiavelli • Wrote the book “The Prince”. One of the most influential works on political power in the western world. • Rejected ethical ruling in favor of being self-centered, the “nature of man”. • Believed that man cannot rule with a conscience or morals, but must be prepared to act on behalf of the state. • His ideas influenced many leaders to follow. Society Society was divided into 3 classes • Nobility- the upper class. Born into Nobility, be trained as a warrior and well-educated, and follow a standard of conduct • Peasents and Townspeople- 85-90 percent of the population. Merchants and artisans. Marriage- Dowry- a sum of money given to the husband by the wife’s family at time of marriage. Man ruled society.