How Renaissance was the rebirth of the human spirit?
Renaissance was the rebirth of the human spirit.
The renaissance was the discovery of the world and of man.
The expansion of the trade led to development of new products and new merchant class for carrying out the transactions. Thus, a whole new class of merchants appeared in the society. The cities began to grow as centers of population and trade. Many of the cities such as Venice and Pisa became great port cities.
This was the development of the new economy of trade. This growing, neo-rich class could not fit into the centuries old system of existing political and social structure of feudalism. The ownership of land became less important. The decreasing importance of the land ownership eventually led to the breaking down of the feudal system.
The traders and merchants developed their own system to bring order to the new economics. This new organization was known as Guild System which was mainly to maintain the quality and prices of goods and services. The Guild System allowed the merchants and craftsmen to maintain control over their own professions.
Any outsider was forbidden to practice a trade or enter a business without the approval of the guild membership. Once established, the guilds would become as rigid in their own way as the old class structure. These merchants and craftsmen formed the basis for a new class of town dwellers, the bourgeoisie and burgesses. The political and social systems were not able to keep up with the economic changes.
One the one side, there was a development of powerful and prosperous cities driven by the new economy of the merchant class. On the other hand, the estates and land remained in the hands of the landlords, who now lost their importance to the trading class.
Those monarchs who were willing to increase their power in the new society led to the rise of new centralized modern states. In the remote estates, many of the landowners had been killed during the Crusades leaving more land in the hands of fewer people. Now, the cities and towns started attaching their development to the Kings rather than the lords. They wanted a protection from this centralized monarchy against the lords. In return, they paid taxes to the King. King was now having more wealth in controlling the lord, who until now were independent of his authority. The strong kings were supported by the merchants in lieu of the protection, uniform law, measures and weights and several trade concessions. The wealth was used by the Kings to pay for new modern and well equipped armies and navies. Old nobility had no wealth to keep up with such changes. Thus, crusades led to development of the nation states stimulated by the trade.
The increasing wealth, wider travel, and a greater knowledge of the outside world led to a new philosophy and outlook on life which is collectively called Renaissance. Up till now, the inspiration was mainly from the Church to have a better life in the heaven, now the man was interested in the earthly affairs and having a better life here in this world only, in which he lived. Thus, the Renaissance was the rebirth of the human spirit.
This rebirth of the human spirit was reflected in the art, the architecture, the literature, the music, a new interest in learning and scientific discovery, the rediscovered curiosity about the world bringing exploration and discovery, and in new political ideas. This new philosophy which was human-centered and emphasized human reason was called humanism and dominated the period of the Renaissance.
The Renaissance did not come quickly or easily but for many centuries, much of the history of Europe saw a constant clash between the old traditions of the Middle Ages and the new ways of the modern world.