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Word Count: 758
Renaissance French for rebirth perfectly describes the intellectual and economic changes that occurred in Europe from the fourteenth to the sixteenth century This intellectual movement developed in Italy more specifically Florence It is meant to imply a rebirth of the way of life of antiquity or a new set of attitudes that use Ancient Rome and Greece as models During this period in Italy the breakdown of the Roman Empire is taking place- Northern Italy is being overrun from the East There is a continuation of urban life on the Italian Peninsula contact and trade exists with countries outside of Europe Politically Italy is not as decentralized as the rest of Europe The papacy behaved more like the state than the church The papacy controlled land fielded armies and played the role of leader The major city-states during the Renaissance were Naples Florence Milan Venice and the Papal States The Renaissance brought us many discoveries Tools were developed for exploration One of these tools was the astrolabe a portable device used by sailors to help them find their way The astrolabe measured the distance of the stars and sun above the horizon which played a role in finding the latitude which was important in navigation The magnetic compass was also improves upon during the Renaissance Maps became more reliable as cartographers began to incorporate the information of travelers and explorers into their work and shipbuilding improved Large ships called galleons became common These ships were powered by sail rather than by men using oars Although navigation was still not a precise science sailors were able to go farther than they were before returning with imported goods from the East The slave trade begins to flourish and Europeans are discovering more of the world In 1445 Gutenberg invented the printing press forever changing the lives of the people in Europe and eventually people around the world Before the printing press books were hand-written By
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