Think of the Renaissance and you might only picture the work of fine artists such as Leonardo, Raphael, Michelangelo and Van Eyck. Or architecture could spring to mind and you might think of St Peter's in Rome and the Doge's Palace in Venice. Or you might consider scientists like Galileo and Copernicus.
But then let's not forget the contribution of thinkers like Machiavelli, Thomas More or Erasmus. Someone else, though, might plump for music or poets and dramatists - after all, there was Dante and Shakespeare. Because when it comes to the Renaissance, there's an embarrassment of riches to choose from. From art to architecture, music to literature, science to medicine, political thought to religion, The Renaissance expertly guides the reader through the cultural and intellectual flowering that Europe witnessed from the 14th to the 17th centuries. Ranging from the origins of the Renaissance in medieval Florence to the Counter- Reformation, the book explains how a revival in the study in Antiquity was able to flourish across the Italian states, before spreading to Iberia and north across Europe. Nimbly moving from perspective in paintings to Copernicus's understanding of the Universe, from Martin Luther's challenge to the Roman Catholic Church to the foundations of modern school education, The Renaissance is a highly accessible and colourful journey along the cultural contours of Europe from the Late Middle Ages to the early modern period.
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