Notice: This is the official website of the All Empires History Community (Reg. 10 Feb 2002)

  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Register Register  Login Login

Renaissance: How Europe reconnected to its Antiquity heritage?

 Post Reply Post Reply
Poll Question: Bizantium
Poll Choice Votes Poll Statistics
2 [8.33%]
2 [8.33%]
9 [37.50%]
0 [0.00%]
2 [8.33%]
9 [37.50%]
You can not vote in this poll

Author
cavalry4ever View Drop Down
AE Moderator
AE Moderator
Avatar
Retired AE Moderator Emeritus

Joined: 17-Nov-2004
Location: Virginia
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 589
  Quote cavalry4ever Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Renaissance: How Europe reconnected to its Antiquity heritage?
    Posted: 18-Jan-2005 at 12:43

Middle ages, called also Dark Ages saw total loss of continuity between Greek and Roman Antique cultures and medieval Europe. Renaissance started when Europeans rediscovered writings of Ancient Greeks and Romans. This restarted art, science and technology after thousand years of darkness. Empirical methods were brought back to Europe. Who was custodian of all that knowledge during Dark Ages and how we got this knowledge back?


If you chose "Other",  could you provide some explanation for your choice?



Edited by cavalry4ever
Back to Top
cavalry4ever View Drop Down
AE Moderator
AE Moderator
Avatar
Retired AE Moderator Emeritus

Joined: 17-Nov-2004
Location: Virginia
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 589
  Quote cavalry4ever Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Jan-2005 at 12:51

This is a tough poll and you cannot really google for an answer.

 

A culture, to be a custodian of Antique cultural heritage and to have ability to pass it on, needs the following:

 

  • Great economy, so people have time and means for intellectual pursuit. In this period of time great economies are based on extensive trade routes.

 

  • Rulers with personal interest in building large libraries.

 

  • Technology to make books less expensive. Paper mills would help considerably

 

  • Period of existence. Renaissance got started in the late Middle Ages.

 

Another thing to consider is the direction of propagation of Renaissance.

 



Edited by cavalry4ever
Back to Top
Tobodai View Drop Down
Tsar
Tsar
Avatar
Retired AE Moderator

Joined: 03-Aug-2004
Location: Antarctica
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4310
  Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Jan-2005 at 17:16
I think the renaisance is over rated, it only effected the very top stratum of society and already before the renaisance EUrope was emerging from its uncool period.  I think the Arabs had more to do with preserving ancient "knowledge" (more like theories that can be either right or wrong) and it eventually leaked back west.
"the people are nothing but a great beast...
I have learned to hold popular opinion of no value."
-Alexander Hamilton
Back to Top
cavalry4ever View Drop Down
AE Moderator
AE Moderator
Avatar
Retired AE Moderator Emeritus

Joined: 17-Nov-2004
Location: Virginia
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 589
  Quote cavalry4ever Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Jan-2005 at 21:51
Originally posted by Tobodai

I think the renaisance is over rated, it only effected the very top stratum of society and already before the renaisance EUrope was emerging from its uncool period.  I think the Arabs had more to do with preserving ancient "knowledge" (more like theories that can be either right or wrong) and it eventually leaked back west.


It is true that only educated people were instrumental in starting Renaissance. But, Europe was very elitist until XX century. Some say it still is. These elites were responsible for setting the tone for next few centuries.  Renaissance was more about absorbing what was lost than setting new European agenda. Age of Enlightenment did this.
We went from people studying how many angels can be put on a pinhead to debating about Roman law. Incidentally, first university to question Church's dogmas was Sorbonne.
It is true that this setting up Renaissance happened in the late Medieval Period, but Arabs were instrumental in it.
Middle Ages helped Europe in the fact that Latin became lingua franca of all universities. All Arab libraries were translated into Spanish and then into Latin by Spanish monks. There were caravans going north loaded with books. This may have been an unique period in the history. As it is usual the stage for the next important period is set up in the previous one. It helped that Spanish king from this period was more tolerant. If this happened during reign of Isabella and Ferdinand, all these books would be probably burned.

 

Sciences that Arabs expanded: mathematics, economy, medicine, botany, geography, history, and philosophy (Algebra, Logarithms, etc).

Cordoba fell in 1031 (XI century). It took some time to distribute all this intellectual wealth trough Europe. It is interesting to see that it was during Renaissance that Europe burned on stakes more scientists and philosophers than at any other period in its history.

To person chosing Alexandria's library, it was burned bi Cesar's legions in the first century CE.




Edited by cavalry4ever
Back to Top
Komnenos View Drop Down
Tsar
Tsar
Avatar
Retired AE Administrator

Joined: 20-Dec-2004
Location: Neutral Zone
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4361
  Quote Komnenos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-Jan-2005 at 16:00
The major custodians of the cultural achievements of Greek and Roman antiquity were the the various Arab states and the Byzantine Empire. The two major catalysts for re-introducing these heritage back into Western Europe were firstly the crusades, both in Palestine and in Spain, when the Crusaders came in contact with two far more civilised societies and either, though not too often, were inspired by what they experienced, or, more often, just stole the more durable expression of such culture(e.g. in 1204); and secondly, the fall of Constantinople in 1453, when many of the custodians went to Western Europe, and brought their knowledge and their books with them.
[IMG]http://i71.photobucket.com/albums/i137/komnenos/crosses1.jpg">
Back to Top
cavalry4ever View Drop Down
AE Moderator
AE Moderator
Avatar
Retired AE Moderator Emeritus

Joined: 17-Nov-2004
Location: Virginia
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 589
  Quote cavalry4ever Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-Jan-2005 at 16:13
Originally posted by Komnenos

The major custodians of the cultural achievements of Greek and Roman antiquity were the the various Arab states and the Byzantine Empire. The two major catalysts for re-introducing these heritage back into Western Europe were firstly the crusades, both in Palestine and in Spain, when the Crusaders came in contact with two far more civilised societies and either, though not too often, were inspired by what they experienced, or, more often, just stole the more durable expression of such culture(e.g. in 1204); and secondly, the fall of Constantinople in 1453, when many of the custodians went to Western Europe, and brought their knowledge and their books with them.


This is not true. Constantinople did not really play major role in European Renaissance. If it did, Renaissance would spread from East to the West of Europe.
Major book collections were burned there in Cruasader caused fire (1204). A lot of these works were copied and brought to Cordoba prior to crusaders. Cordobe Caliphs were on good terms with Emperor of Bizantium.
There were many libraries through the Arab world and beyond it. What was interesting is that Western Caliph sent his emissaries all over world (China and India included) to transcribe any interesting works and translate them into Arabic.
This way he concentrated dispersed knowledge in a single spot. Among all Arabs, Cordoba Caliphate contributed most to expand this knowledge.
This way Cordoba and Medina Azahara libraries were probably competitive in size with Alexandrian library.
We know this, because we have annotated books from this period all over Europe and can trace their source. It is interesting to see a copy of Roman law book with annotaion on the margins. You can see notes of people trying to understand stuff like Common Law and others.

Back to Top
Komnenos View Drop Down
Tsar
Tsar
Avatar
Retired AE Administrator

Joined: 20-Dec-2004
Location: Neutral Zone
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4361
  Quote Komnenos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29-Jan-2005 at 17:05
Originally posted by cavalry4ever


This is not true. Constantinople did not really play major role in
European Renaissance. If it did, Renaissance would spread from East to
the West of Europe.


Oh yes, it is! Theres is a general agreement in historical writing, that the fall of the Byzantine Empire caused or at least re-inforced a awakening of interest in Classical Greek and Roman heritage in the West. A large number of Byzantine intellectuals fled to Europe and especially to Italy. Dissemination of knowledge does not only happen via books, but also through the exchange of ideas.
I'm not saying that 1453 was the birth of the Renaussance, there is no singular factor or event responsible for this.
[IMG]http://i71.photobucket.com/albums/i137/komnenos/crosses1.jpg">
Back to Top
cavalry4ever View Drop Down
AE Moderator
AE Moderator
Avatar
Retired AE Moderator Emeritus

Joined: 17-Nov-2004
Location: Virginia
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 589
  Quote cavalry4ever Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-Jan-2005 at 15:54
Originally posted by Komnenos

Originally posted by cavalry4ever


This is not true. Constantinople did not really play major role in
European Renaissance. If it did, Renaissance would spread from East to
the West of Europe.


Oh yes, it is! Theres is a general agreement in historical writing, that the fall of the Byzantine Empire caused or at least re-inforced a awakening of interest in Classical Greek and Roman heritage in the West. A large number of Byzantine intellectuals fled to Europe and especially to Italy. Dissemination of knowledge does not only happen via books, but also through the exchange of ideas.
I'm not saying that 1453 was the birth of the Renaussance, there is no singular factor or event responsible for this.


Yes there is the single major factor and it is called in Spanish "La Reconquista".
You need theory and science behind architecture. Interesting example of this is architecture. And in particular large domes, like St. Peter's basilica. There is another example in Rome: The Pantheon, well preserved and build by Romans. Medieval architects looked stupidly at it and could not figure out how it was done.
They lacked necessary knowledge to reproduce it. So talking about it was not that helpful to them. As I said, most of Constantinople was burned and that included libraries.
Another interesting fact about Renaissance is that it literally exploded all over Europe like a wild fire. By end of fifteen century, it engulfed the whole of Catholic Europe.
When Constantinople fell, it was a scientific and cultural backwater of Europe and had very little in common with its glory days. 






Edited by cavalry4ever
Back to Top
Degredado View Drop Down
Consul
Consul
Avatar

Joined: 07-Aug-2004
Location: Portugal
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 366
  Quote Degredado Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-Jan-2005 at 18:13

Originally posted by cavalry4ever



Yes there is the single major factor and it is called in Spanish "La Reconquista".

I disagree with that view. The renaissance began in Italy due to diverse factors. The reconquista originated a completely different mentality.


Medieval architects looked stupidly at it and could not figure out how it was done.

But they weren't stupid. Have you ever heard an architect speak of the gothic cathedrals. You'll get the impression that only aliens could have made them.

Another interesting fact about Renaissance is that it literally exploded all over Europe like a wild fire. By end of fifteen century, it engulfed the whole of Catholic Europe.

No it didn't. The renaissance we know spread from Italy. 

When Constantinople fell, it was a scientific and cultural backwater of Europe and had very little in common with its glory days. 

Actually, as I understand it, Mystra was quite a place of learning 

I've stated once before that I find the arab contribution to the renaissance to be a bit overrated. It was very passive, after all. Monks had to go there and get the information they needed. Not only that, but monasteries were intellectually active places, whether you like it or not. And Byzantium did conserve a lot. The Crusades hardly contributed to the intellectual improvement of Europeans.

The XV th century renaissance is a purely Italian thing, that can only be explained taking into account Italian history and culture.

The twelfth century renaissance is considered by some to be far more interesting. And it is mostly due to the improvement of a monk's education, and perhaps to the decline of arab power (as some say)

Vou votar nas putas. Estou farto de votar nos filhos delas
Back to Top
cavalry4ever View Drop Down
AE Moderator
AE Moderator
Avatar
Retired AE Moderator Emeritus

Joined: 17-Nov-2004
Location: Virginia
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 589
  Quote cavalry4ever Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03-Feb-2005 at 12:39
About gothic cathedrals. First of all flying buttresses have a very simple geometry.
It is a bit of a common sense approach to compenation of the lateral force exerted by the roof ( weight of a roof will spread walls apart if not compensated for). Any other stuff in the gothic cathedral is more decorative than functional.
They were developed a bit by trial and error approach. There were quite few cathedrals that collapsed during construction. On other hand, anything that is elliptoid in shape needs a very strong knowledge of geometry. You notice that  Hagia Sophia was also build in sixth century.

Italian Renaissance was influenced by Sicily, which was under Arab (Umayyed) control. Umayyeds founded Western Caliphate. There was a lot of Greek cultural influence among Sicilian Arabs. This influence dates to the time Bizantium culture was at its apogee. Sicilian connection is quite interesting and Palermo at some time was a major cultural center.

Science and culture in the Arab world of this period surpassed Byzantium stagnant society. Arabs build on the foundation they inherited from Eastern Roman Empire. When Byzantium felt, it was just a shadow of its past glory.

Back to Top
Quetzalcoatl View Drop Down
General
General

Suspended

Joined: 05-Aug-2004
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 984
  Quote Quetzalcoatl Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03-Feb-2005 at 22:44

About gothic cathedrals. First of all flying buttresses have a very simple geometry.
It is a bit of a common sense approach to compenation of the lateral force exerted by the roof ( weight of a roof will spread walls apart if not compensated for). Any other stuff in the gothic cathedral is more decorative than functional.
They were developed a bit by trial and error approach. There were quite few cathedrals that collapsed during construction. On other hand, anything that is elliptoid in shape needs a very strong knowledge of geometry. You notice that  Hagia Sophia was also build in sixth century.

 You are joking aren't you. You think gothic cathedral were simple? You  probably don't have a clue about what you are ranting about. Gothic cathedral such Amien is as complex as it can and structures of such complexities is not seen anywhere else. trial and error was reasonable in the early age, once the technology was mastered, gothic architecture rich it peak in world architecture. Modern architecture will all it's engineering is not that complex. Gothic architecture is htouroughly studied in most western school and it still  influence modern architecture which is usually simpler despite the use of more advance engineering.

 Tell the arabs either build anything like Amien or the cathedral of cologne.

 

 

 

Back to Top
Exarchus View Drop Down
General
General
Avatar

Joined: 18-Jan-2005
Location: France
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 760
  Quote Exarchus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Feb-2005 at 11:06
Originally posted by cavalry4ever

About gothic cathedrals. First of all flying buttresses have a very simple geometry.
It is a bit of a common sense approach to compenation of the lateral force exerted by the roof ( weight of a roof will spread walls apart if not compensated for). Any other stuff in the gothic cathedral is more decorative than functional.
They were developed a bit by trial and error approach. There were quite few cathedrals that collapsed during construction. On other hand, anything that is elliptoid in shape needs a very strong knowledge of geometry. You notice that  Hagia Sophia was also build in sixth century.


I'm sorry but that's just wrong.

1st, the gothic churchs can't be compared to Hagia Sofia, there are about 700 years between the two.

Gothic churchs belong to the middle ages, rennaissance was a different era. Gothic like churchs built after the 15th century (around this) are gothic revival.

Claiming gothic churchs are simple in geometry is just wrong.  The geometry was very complex and if so many of them collapsed that's because they crushed everything else is size.

Look at the world tallest structure though history.

The Great Pyramid, 146m. Became 136m with the time
Lincoln Cathedral, 160m (collapsed)
Saint Olag of Talinn, 153m (collapsed)
Strasbourg Minster, 143m
Saint Paul of London, 153m (2nd version, collapsed and burned in the fire of 1666)
Saint Pierre of Beauvais, 153m (collapsed)
Saint Nikolas of Hamburg, 147m
Notre Dame de Rouen, 153m
Saint Peter of Cologne, 158m.
Then to the Washington Monument

The cathedral of Cologne and Milan took about 600 years to be built, though they are gothic revival not just gothic.

If some many gothic cathedrals collapsed, that's because they streched to the limit of architecture.

Hagia Sofia was a monster in size when built and an enginering wonder. But the Byzantine empire was catched by the west in the 13th century.

Just look at the choir of Saint Pierre of Beauvais


Or the Lincoln Cathedral, imagine it with a spire over it doubling its size.

 
Gothicform (who took the last picture) tell me I should mention Lincoln also had two more spires in front of it, about 120m tall.

Also it's not clear of this picture, but it has two transcepts.

Edited by Exarchus
Vae victis!
Back to Top
Mangudai View Drop Down
Consul
Consul
Avatar

Joined: 09-Aug-2004
Location: Sweden
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 368
  Quote Mangudai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Feb-2005 at 14:26
Originally posted by cavalry4ever

Middle ages, called also Dark Ages saw total loss of continuity between Greek and Roman Antique cultures and medieval LACE>EuropeLACE>. Renaissance started when Europeans rediscovered writings of Ancient Greeks and Romans. This restarted art, science and technology after thousand years of darkness. Empirical methods were brought back to LACE>EuropeLACE>. Who was custodian of all that knowledge during Dark Ages and how we got this knowledge back?


If you chose "Other",  could you provide some explanation for your choice?

That old-fashioned wiew of the middle ages is utterly false and is strongly opposed by most modern historians. The "Dark ages" were not dark, it was a time of development, european integrity and expansion. The antique herritage was not preserved no I admit that - but it was developed! When the renaissance people "rediscovered" the classics they merely made a step back in history, ignoring the development during the previous centuries...  

Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Bulletin Board Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 9.56a [Free Express Edition]
Copyright ©2001-2009 Web Wiz

This page was generated in 0.172 seconds.