The Renaissance Period Essay

The Renaissance started in Italy during the 1300’s before spreading throughout Europe in the 1500 and 1600’s. It came about because of a change in the way of thinking. In an effort to learn, people began to want to understand the world around them. This study of the world and how it works was the start of a new age of science. “The people were curious and questioned the known wisdom of the church. They began to use experimentation and observation to solve worldly problems”. (Johnson). Many Renaissance intellects focused on trying to define and understand the laws of nature and the physical world. During the Renaissance, great advances occurred in science and technology as well as others areas.Gun powder was invented around 1040. This later led to the inventions of other destructive devices. Although hard to believe, rockets were launched as fireworks and weapons in China in the early 1230’s. This led to William Congreve developing rockets to use during wars. Also, coming from the invention of gun powder was the gun and other projectile-firing artillery. “These new inventions greatly affected how war was fought. No more hand-to-hand combat with implied rules” (Bellis). Also with these new weapons came a higher number of casualties.

In 1410 the first portable clock was developed in Florence, Italy by Filippo Brunelleschi. Before this mechanic clocks were large, fixed devices. The spring-driven clock made it possible to always know the time. Later improvements were made by Galileo who invented the pendulum in 1581. The pendulum allowed clocks to be made that were much more accurate. “Although Galileo is credited with inventing the pendulum, his design for a clock was not built before his death” (….

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…ter refined by scientists such as Francis Bacon and Isaac Newton.

The Renaissance period also brought on an age of exploration. The expeditions of Ferdinand Magellan, Jacques Cartier and Sir Walter Raleigh paved the way for the journey of the Mayflower. Cristopher Columbus set out on his first voyage at the age of fourteen. He was a well-educated man and knew that the world was round and thought that a ship could eventually reach the Far East from the opposite direction. On August 3, 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue. His goal was to spread Christianity and to bring back gold, spices and silks from the Far East.

The Renaissance was a time of creativity and change in Europe. It produced many achievements in art, literature, and science, but most importantly it produced a new concept of how people thought of themselves, each other, and the world around them.


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