The Impact of the Renaissance Era

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The Renaissance began in the 1200’s and lasted through the Reformation of the 1500’s.This period in time marked the rebirth of humanism, and the revival of cultural achievements for their own sake in all forms of art, including music. The word "Renaissance" in itself is defined as a "rebirth"or a "reconstruction".(Law, John E. ) “Many aspects of this movement had some influence on American development. The Renaissance replaced a religious point of view with a secular one, making man rather than God the focal point wit reference to are, literature, and the government. “( pulliam, 21)The Renaissance was a really important turning point in Western thinking and cultural tradition. All of these changes centered on the idea of Humanism -- in which, people became less "God Centered" and more "Human-centered"."Renaissance Humanism was a European intellectual movement beginning in Florence in the last decades of the 14th century. The humanist movement developed from the rediscovery by European scholars of many Latin and Greek texts. Initially, a humanist was simply a teacher of Latin literature. By the mid-15th century humanism described a curriculum — the studia humanitatis — comprising grammar, rhetoric, moral philosophy, poetry and history as studied via classical authors. The early beliefs of humanism were that, although God created the universe, it was humans that developed and industrialized it".(

During the Renaissance era the social scene was on point. During this time many changes happened in fashion, food, and events. Renaissance fashion and costumes mirrored the advancing culture, as increasing trade made more clothing materials available. Nobility dressed themselves in elaborate and brightly colored robes, gowns and other vestments. The upper class reserved silk for themselves, and in some areas, peasants were forbidden to possess it. Those living during the Renaissance would adorn themselves in jewelry, furs, and elaborate belts. Wigs crafted from peasant's hair was also very popular. Because the Renaissance era covers approximately 150 years of history, its fashions changed dramatically from beginning to end. At the dawn of the Renaissance in 1450, clothing styles were influenced by Medieval and Gothic designs, as well as the Italian Renaissance movement in art. Women's fashions assumed a more natural appearance from their Gothic predecessors. "Dresses gradually lost their long trains, and flowing skirts became increasingly popular. The robe, which was actually a dress with an attached bodice and skirt, appeared on the fashion scene. In addition, the long, rigid, corset that extended in a cone shape below the waist to a V debuted during the early part of the Renaissance period. Women also began showing their hair again. Instead of covering their heads, they adorned their coiffures with shimmering veils and dazzling jewels. In men's fashions, doublets shortened and low-necked tunics and chemises became common garb. Hose became a common necessity for the well-dressed gentleman. Brocades and velvets were among the favored fabrics for both men's and women's clothing". (Burke, Jill) Knowing how the fashion was in the past is importnat because we can see what they wore and why and compare it to our modern styles and see how they differ and how they are similar.

During the Renaissance food was a matter of social class, as well as region and season." In modest European homes, meat was not necessarily served every day. Bread was the fundamental staple for the lower and middle classes, was made with cheaper grains than wheat: barley and rye, for example. Meals for the lower social classes usually consisted of dark bread such as rye or barley, and cheese or curds".(Summers, Claude J.) Servants living in wealthy households usually dined better, enjoying meals of beef or fowl, refined breads, pudding, cod and ale. They also had access to certain seasonings such as salt....
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