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Humanism and Classicism The Renaissance was a time of great achievements and prosperity During the Renaissance people moved out of the manor system of the medieval age and into the cities The Renaissance brought the flourish of trade business market systems and money However the true achievement of the Renaissance was in the arts The bleak medieval ages had shut people out of the arts and reinforced Bible Christianity Beginning with the 1400s the perspective on the arts and philosophy began to change Painters such as Michelangelo and Donatelo and writers such as Dante Machiavelli and Petrarch began the Renaissance with their deep and insightful works Soon an era of enlightenment swept from Italy to all over Europe Some say that the most important achievement of the Renaissance was the idea of perspective because it is used so frequently in art today However the Renaissance idea that is most evident today is the humanist views about a broad education curriculum and the church Humanistic views about the study of history literature and religion are still used in schools today Through humanism the great philosophers of the Renaissance studied the works of the Romans and Greeks This study of the Greeks and Romans came to be known as classicism Humanism in philosophy is the attitude that emphasizes the dignity and worth of the individual A basic premise of humanism is that people are rational beings who possess within themselves the capacity for truth and goodness The term humanism is most often used to describe a literary and cultural movement that spread through western Europe in the 14th and 15th centuries Lucas 54 This Renaissance revival of Greek and Roman studies emphasized the value of the classics for their own sake rather than for their relevance to Christianity The humanist movement started in Italy where the late medieval Italian writers Dante Giovanni Boccaccio and Francesco Petrarch contributed greatly to the discovery and preservation
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