The Northern Renaissance

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THE NORTHERN
RENAISSANCE

In the 1200s and 1300s, most cities in Europe were
in Italy.

By the 1500s large cities had also sprouted in
northern Europe.

Soon, ideas of the Renaissance reached the
growing cities of London, Paris, Amsterdam, and
others.
 As cities grew, a vast trading network was
A BOOK REVOLUTION

Renaissance ideas were also spread by Italian
artists who fled to northern Europe to escape
violent clashes between the armies of northern
monarchs and wealthy Italian cities.

Mid 1400s– the German Johannes Gutenburg
cast the letters of the alphabet onto metal plates
and locked those plates into a wooden press.

This moveable type– which had its roots in China
and Korea–

With this…text could be quickly printed on both
sides of a sheet of paper.

Moveable type made producing books and other
printed material faster and cheaper, which made
them more available to all types of people.

First publication was the 1282 page BIBLE.
-- within 35 years, a Gutenburg press appeared as
far away as Constantinople.

PHILOSOPHERS/WRITERS
Printed books provided more rapid access to new
ideas.
With easier access to books, more people learned to
read and more books were printed.
DESIDERIUS ERASMUS- Leading Christian
Humanist. Working as a priest in what is now the
Netherlands, Erasmus wrote extensively about the
need for a pure and simple Christian life, stripped
of the rituals and politics of the church on earth.
SIR THOMAS MORE

Humanism was introduced to England by living
there and by English people who had studied in
Italy.

SIR THOMAS MORE- fellow humanist and
English statesman

Wrote a novel called UTOPIA was meant for a
humanist audience, and it was widely read across
Europe.
WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE

Many scholars believe the greatest writer was
English playwright WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE.

Drew inspiration from ancient and contemporary
works of literature.
Had a wide knowledge of natural science and
humanist topics, and a deep understanding of
human nature, were expressed in his plays.


Use of language and choice of themes, made
plays appeal even to uneducated people.
Shakespeare

Through his plays, Renaissance ideas spread to
mass audiences.

Shakespeare focused on the lives of realistic
characters.

Shakespeare’s plays were a popular past time for
people from every class.
Christine de Pisan



Italian-born writer
Wrote important works focusing on the role
women played in society.
In her book, The City of Women, she discusses
different views of women and their roles in
society.
She was one of the few to champion equality and
education for women.
ARTISTS
ALBRECHT DURER (DOOR-UHR)
-German artist
-Used Italian Techniques of realism and perspective
in his own works
-Painted in oils, a medium that characterized the art
of northern Europe.
-Oil paints reproduced the texture of fabric, wood,
and other tiny details.

ARTISTS

-
JAN VAN EYCK
Flemish(Beligium) painter
- Focused on landscapes and domestic life
HANS HOLBEIN
- Used objects as symbols to characterize the
subjects in his portraits.
 PIETER BRUEGHEL
- Flemish artist. Paintings showed scenes from
everyday peasant life.

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