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    BCS Famous Men of the Renaissance

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    (1276-1337) Florentine Painter who led the way in the use of realism; sometimes called the “father of renaissance painting”.
    (1304 – 1374) Italian scholar and poet known as the Father of Humanism; wrote Italian sonnets; created the concept of the Middle Ages by nostalgically looking back to glory of ancient Rome.
    (1377-1436) architect and sculptor; created the Duomo; could balance an egg on end; developed (or rediscovered linear perspective); friend of Donatello.
    (1386-1466) Sculptor. Probably exerted greatest influence of any Florentine artist before Michelangelo. His statues expressed an appreciation of the incredible variety of human nature.
    Lorenzo Valla
    (1406-1457) Father of textual criticism. Wrote On Pleasure and On the False Donation of Constantine, which challenged the authority of the papacy, especially their claim to land in northern Italy.
    Cosimo de’ Medici
    (1389-1464) banker who became a wealthy Florentine and an astute statesman; brought power back to Florence in 1434 when he ascended to power; controlled the city behind the sceneby skillfully manipulating the constitution and influencing elections; grandfather of Lorenzo the Magnificent
    Lorenzo de’ Medici
    (1449-1492) Italian statesman and scholar who supported many artists and humanists including Michelangelo and Leonardo and Botticelli (1449-1492)
    Girolamo Savonarola
    (1452-1498) Became the unofficial leader of Florence between 1494-1498 who pledged to rid Florence of its decadence and corruption, oversaw a theocracy in Florence. When France was removed from Italy in 1498, Savonarola was imprisoned, tried, and burned at the stake.
    Sandro Botticelli
    (1444 – 1510) Florentine painter known for vivid colors; painted both mythological works (“The Birth of Venus” & “Primavera”) & religious works (“The Adoration of the Magi”); burned his own works during the “Bonfire of Vanities” sponsored by Savonarola.
    Leonardo da Vinci
    (1452-1519) Italian painter, engineer, musician, and scientist. The most versatile genius of the Renaissance, Leonardo filled notebooks with engineering and scientific observations that were in some cases centuries ahead of their time. As a painter Leonardo is best known for The Last Supper (c. 1495) and Mona Lisa (c. 1503).
    Michelangelo Buonarroti
    (1475-1564) Italian Renaissance sculptor, painter, architect, and poet mainly known for his work on the Sistine Chapel and his sculptures David and the Pieta; career began at the age of 12, was forced to paint by his father; completed many pieces for the Medici Family and Pope Julius II; apprentice to the painter Domenico Ghirlandaio and the sculpture school in the Medici gardens; served as the supervising architect of St. Peter’s Basilica; spent most of his life working on commission for powerful people he was not able to refuse.
    Cesare Borgia
    (1475-1507) member of the Spanish Borgia family and illegitimate son of Pope Alexander VI who inherited much power and territory from his father, known as Duke Valentino. This “new monarch” reasserted the church authority in the papal lands of Italy. Cesare began uniting the peninsula by conquering and invading the principalities making up the papal states. He is considered by Machiavelli to have been a most capable leader and the embodiment of what a prince should be. Machiavelli suggests that an ambitious prince looking for a recent model to follow should imitate Cesare Borgia. Machiavelli uses many events of Cesare Borgia’s life to illustrate how and why he was successful. Machiavelli believes that Cesare Borgia would have succeeded in uniting all of Italy had he not fallen ill. Examining Cesare Borgia’s life, Machiavelli concludes that in order for a prince to ultimately succeed, he needs both ability and fortune.
    Niccolo Machiavelli
    (1469-1527) Italian historian, statesman, and political philosopher of the Renaissance. His greatest work is The Prince, a book of political advice to rulers in which he describes the methods that a prince should use to acquire and maintain political power. This book was used to defend policies of despotism and tyranny. Machiavelli wrote that a ruler should take any action to remain in power, or that “the ends justifies the means.”
    Leo X
    (1475-1521) Giovanni, son of Lorenzo de’ Medici; became pope in 1513 and quickly emptied the papal accounts on his extravagant lifestyle; sold indulgences to continue his profligate spending; excommunicated Martin Luther and who in 1521 bestowed on Henry VIII the title of Defender of the Faith; died in 1521
    (1466-1536) Dutch humanist and friend of Sir Thomas More. Widely respected intellectual in Europe. Believed the problems in the Catholic Church could be fixed; did not support the idea of a Reformation. Wrote In Praise of Folly. Published his translation of the NT in Latin along with a Greek text which was widely used by the Reformers to translate into vernacular languages. Sparred with Luther.

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