The Italian And The Northern European Renaissance

Read Complete Research Material


Italian Renaissance and the Northern European Renaissance

Italian Renaissance and the Northern European Renaissance

What are the Social and Cultural Similarities between the Italian and Northern European Renaissance?

Geography aside, there were some significant differences between the Italian Renaissance and the Northern Renaissance. For one thing, the north held on to Gothic (or "Middle Ages") art and architecture with a tighter, longer grip than did Italy. (Architecture, in particular, remained Gothic until well into the 16th century.) This isn't to say that art wasn't changing in the north - in many instances it kept apace with Italian doings (Bourdieu, 1993). The Northern Renaissance artists, however, were scattered about and few in number initially (very unlike their Italian counterparts).

The north had fewer centers of free commerce than did Italy. Italy, as we saw, had numerous Duchies and Republics which gave rise to a wealthy merchant class that often spent considerable funds on art. This wasn't the case in the north. In fact, the only notable similarity between Northern Europe and, say, a place like Florence, lay in the Duchy of Burgundy.

Burgundy, until 1477, encompassed a territory from present-day middle France northward (in an arc) to the sea, and included Flanders (in modern Belgium) and parts of the current Netherlands. It was the only individual entity standing between France and the enormous Holy Roman Empire. Its Dukes, during the last 100 years it existed, were given monikers of "the Good," "the Fearless" and "the Bold" (although apparently the last "Bold" Duke wasn't quite bold enough, as Burgundy was absorbed by both France and the Holy Roman Empire at the end of his reign...but, I digress...)

The Burgundian Dukes were excellent patrons of the arts, but the art they sponsored was different from that of their Italian counterparts (Bourdieu, 1993). Their ...
Related Ads