The Rat Sat on the Cat

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Sam Harney
Mr. Stewart
02.20.2013
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* In the 13th century, the Black Plague killed 30-60% of Europe’s population. The medieval times were taking place * There was the hundred-year war between France and England * Feudalism was falling - the system of political organization prevailing in Europe:the relation of lord to vassal with all land held in fee and as chief characteristics homage, the service of tenants under arms and in court, wardship, and forfeiture * Italy became the place where the renaissance, or the rebirth of Europe, would take place. Specifically Florence. This is because Italy had several factors that set it apart from the rest of the European nations * When the Roman Empire fell in the 14th century, it left behind established trade routes, a vast network of roads, and cities with resources to become powerful centers of commerce * Instead of one monarchy, Italy became divided by city-states, which are self-governing states consisting of a city and its surrounding territory * Genova and Venice were trade hubs, they made money by trading with the Ottoman Empire. Each city-state had its own specialities, for example in Milan weapons were made and in Florence cloth was made. Gevnoa and Venice traded many textiles. * When Constantinople fell in 1453, the Byzantine scholars fled to Italy, this is known today as a “brain gain”

* When Leonardo da Vinci was born in 1`452, he entered an Italian culture that was straying from the medieval art frameworks and styles

* was born out of wedlock to a peasant named Caterina and the notary Piero da Vinci in a town known as Anchiano, which was near the Tuscan town of Vinci. By age fifteen, da Vinci already had extraordinary talent in the arts, and he was apprenticed to Andrea del Verrocchio for several years. In Florence, under the watchful eye of Verrocchio and his other apprentices, da Vinci’s talent blossomed and he learned the mastery...
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