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Word Count: 868
The Early Renaissance or the Florentine Renaissance all started when the Italian artists and intellectual minds felt an urge to return to their Classical roots Having felt that they had broken radically with the past they began to speak of a rebirth of civilization They rejected the more recent medieval past which constituted the Gothic era Works by classical authors lost to the West for centuries were rediscovered and with them a new humanistic outlook that placed man and human achievement at the center of all things In this time period Florentine artists flourished largely because of the patronage of wealthy citizens and the church Sandro Botticelli the principal painter of the Medici family created a prime example of Florentine Renaissance style artwork which he titled The Birth of Venus The Renaissance style is depicted in his classical subject matter figures from antiquity such as the goddess Venus and the three Graces It is also in the effect of motion that he achieves where he carefully places his figures in nearly balanced groupings yet never loses a feeling of that motion and lightness The Birth of Venus seems to be a combination of mythological and Christian ideas On the surface the painting represents not a Christian legend but a classical myth Venus the goddess of love the nude woman at the center of the work has been born from the sea and is being delicately blown to shore by Zephyrus god of the winds as another woman perhaps a goddess waits on shore to cover Venus with a cloak Venuss modesty despite that fact that she is indeed nude and her pose refer to standard portrayals of the Virgin Mary Zephyrus is recognizable as an angel while the figure on the right refers to another standard religious subject the baptism of Christ specifically the way St John the Baptist is usually pictured The Birth of Venus represented the Florentine Renaissance style in that it
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