Church Corruption

While in Italy the Renaissance was developing
in the rest of Europe the Gothic remains
to early 16th century
Italy coexist with the Roman Antiquity and can inspire on it.
Florence (1400s)
the starting point of the new style
the first works from here will be extended to the rest of Italy
the development of a rich bourgeoisie aid the deployment of
the forces of the Renaissance.
the protection of the Medici
Research of Classical Antiquity
Modern spirit of individuality & Self-awareness
Realism in sculpture and painting
New ideal of beauty
Scientific development
New relationship with Nature
Search for harmony, balance and serenity
Rational attitude to the world, but without abandoning
religious faith
Italian city states
Religion on the Eve of the Reformation
Between 1450 and 1520 a series of popes
failed to meet the Church’s spiritual needs.
They were more concerned with the political
interests of the Papal States. 
Julius II, the “warrior-pope,” even led armies
against his enemies. 
Many people were disgusted with him and
the Catholic Church.
Church Corruption
• Church officials seemed ignorant of their
spiritual duties, especially instructing the
faithful on achieving: salvation –
acceptance into Heaven. 
• As a result, obtaining salvation became
almost mechanical; by collecting relics, for
example. 
• Venerating a saint could gain an
indulgence–release from all or part
of punishment for sin–according to the
Church of the time.
Oct. 31, 1517 - Martin Luther, an obscure,
Augustian Catholic monk nailed 95 thesis
(complaints about Roman Catholic Church)
to the door of his castle church and was soon
increased wealth and worldliness,
selling of indulgences (exchanging grace
for money)
abuse of power
Protestant Reformation
The Reformation :
Questioning Tradition
Luther wrote the 95
Theses and nailed it to a
cathedral door on
October 31, 1517
c. 1526 - Martin Luther wrote a new church liturgy (in German and Latin) based
on Catholicism
launched the Protestant movement - felt mostly in Germany, Switzerland,
England, France, Austria, Poland, Hungary, and the low countries.
opened doors for new compositions and shook the foundation of the Roman
Catholic Church
Martin Luther was also a musician who wrote new music for this new
1545 - Pope Marcellus
led the Catholic
response to Protestant reform movement
Council of Trent- a group of cardinals
and bishops had several sessions to
organize the “new” rules of the Catholic
Charles the Great
Charlemagne, a.k.a. Charles the Great
The Church of the Middle Ages
Black Death Hits Europe
After the Reformation,
Western Europe would never
again under one Church. The
power of the Church was
weakened and the power of
local rulers increased.
The Counter Reformation
Many historians
agree that the death of
Queen Elizabeth I in
1603 marked the end
of both the
Elizabethan era and
the Renaissance.
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