The Renaissance, which started in Italy, provided great advancements in the quality of
life to the Europeans during the 1300's through the late 1500's. Increased trade provided Europe
with an abundance of weath,which allowed culture to flourish. People focused much of their
time on art and literature during this era. Many religious changes took place during the Renaissance, partly due to the Reformation of the Catholic Church. People broke free from religious and social oppression, and Europe became "reborn".
During the Renaissance, or "rebirth", of Europe wealth increased dramatically. The Crusades which preceded the Renaissance, provided Western Europe with new culture and products, such as silk. Merchants began trading with people from the East, which brought wealth and new kinds of goods to Europe. Slavery became re-introduced into society during the Renaissance and many Muslims worked as slaves in Italy. Money lending and trade contributed to the excessive wealth of city-states in Italy.
City-states possessed enough money for people to explore new kinds of art, philosophy, and government. People explored new areas and the use of maps increased. Access to literature increased due to the invention of the printing press. Books became widespread and affordable to the general public. Education and literacy increased as literature became available in a variety of languages. People expressed their vies openly in their publications, which did not go over well with the Catholic Church. In 1502, the Holy See ordered that all books challenging papal authority must be burned. This order came too late however, and the spread of freethinking during the Renaissance continued despite the censorship from the church.
The Religious establishment went through many changes during the Renaissance. People relied less on the church for guidance and focused more on their inner faith. Revolutionists challenged the doctrine of the... [continues]
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