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Class 11 History Notes Chapter 7 Changing Cultural Traditions

  • Many significant changes took place in cultural traditions of Europe between 14th to 17th centuries.
  • The church mainly influenced the life of people a lot. ‘
  • Renaissance is a French word.
  • Fall of feudalism, the religious wars between Christians and Muslims, commercial properties, etc. were the main reasons for the rise of Renaissance in Europe.
  • Renaissance at first started in Italy. Then it started in Rome, Venice and Florence.
  • In 1455, printing press was invented by Gutenberg.
  • First printing press was set up by Caxton in 1477 in Europe.
  • The invention of printing press increased the volume of books. It also helped in the spread of education.
  • Milan, Naples, Venice and Florence gained the status of trade centers because of flourishing of trades.
  • Humanism was one of the movements that started in Italy in 14th century.
  • Petrarch is known as the ‘Father of Humanism’. He vehemently criticized the superstitions and lifestyle of clergy.
  • Dante was an eminent poet and philosopher of Italy.
  • Dante is known for his classics, The Divine Comedy.
  • William Tyndale (1494-1536) translated the Bible into English in 1506.
  • Boccaccio was the greatest writer and humanist.
  • Decameron is a classic work of Giovanni Boccaccio. It is the collection of 180 stories.
  • Leonardo-da-Vinci was one of the greatest painters. He was born in Florence in the year 1452.
  • Mona Lisa’ and ‘The Last Supper’ were the most famous paintings of Leonardo-da-Vinci.
  • Michelangelo was another great painter. His greatest painting was ‘The Last Judgement’.
  • Nicholas Copernicus, Galileo, Kepler and Issac Newton were well-known scientists of the Renaissance period.
  • The theory of the earth as a part of the sun centered system was made popular by Kepler’s Cosmographical Mystery.
  • The revolution in science reached at its climax with Newton’s theory of gravitation.
  • Aristocratic families dominated the way of life during 14th century medieval Europe.
  • Social, political and economic life of people were deeply affected by Renaissance.
  • Renaissance aroused the spirit of equality among the people and attacked on the superstitions and rituals prevailing in the society.
  • Literature of Renaissance period brought about a great change in political thinking of the people.
  • Reformation movement was a protest movement that took place in the 16th century against the church and the pope.
  • Martin Luther wrote Ninety-Five Theses challenging the authority of the church.
  • Nation-state received new power and vigour from Reformation.
  • The Society of Jesus was founded by Ignatius Loyala in 1540. It made an attempt to combat Protestantism.

Important terms:

  • Renaissance: A French word meaning rebirth.
  • Renaissance man: A person with many interests and skills.
  • Document of Indulgences: A document issued by the church which guaranteed a written promise to absolve the holder of all his sins.
  • Humanism: A movement which gave priority to present life rather than life thereafter.
The Fourteenth and Fifteenth Centuries
1300 Humanism taught at Padua University in Italy
1341 Petrarch given title of ‘Poet Laureate’ in Rome
1349 University established in Florence
1390 Geoffrey Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales published
1436 Brunelleschi designs the Duomo in Florence
1453 Ottoman Turks defeat the Byzantine ruler of Constantinople
1454 Gutenberg prints the Bible with movable type
1484 Portuguese mathematicians calculate latitude by observing the sun
1492 Columbus reaches America
1495 Leonardo da Vinci paints The Last Supper
1512 Michelangelo paints the Sistine Chapel ceiling
The Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries
1516 Thomas More’s Utopia published
1517 Martin Luther writes the Ninety-Five Theses
1522 Luther translates the Bible into German
1525 Peasant uprising in Germany
1543 Andreas Vesalius writes On Anatomy
1559 Anglican Church established in England, with the king/queen as its head
1569 Gerhardus Mercator prepares cylindrical map of the earth
1582 Gregorian calendar introduced by Pope Gregory XIII
1628 William Harvey links the heart with blood circulation
1673 Academy of Sciences set up in Paris
1687 Isaac Newton’s Principia Mathematica published

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