European Renaissance



Basic Level: neatly write out the words and the matching definitions
Higher Level: add small coloured illustrations
Highest Level: be creative (organize the words into groups or add a paragraph using the words or…)

1. accordance
2. blasphemy
3. banish
4. cartoon
5. dowry
6. empirical reasoning
7. etching
8. fresco
9. hinterland
10. humanism
11. maul
12. mercenaries
13. oligarchy
14. patron
15. perspective
16. pile
17. proportion
18. reason
19. renaissance
20. republic
21. stability
22. stagnation
23. summon
24. topography
25. trattoria
26. vanity
27. woodcutting

area around a city
art technique that makes is appear that there is distance on a flat surface
belief that people can improve themselves if they put forth effort
carving a picture into wood and using it to create a stamp
someone who buys art/supports artists
steadiness without sudden or unexpected changes
state or country where citizens elect representatives to government
surface features of a geographical area; e.g. hills, rivers
think through an issue or problem before reaching a decision
think through a problem and gather physical evidence before reaching a decision
watercolour painting on wet plaster
worthless activity, possession or belief that does not lead to truth or goodness

chalk outline drawing
contempt or disdain for ideas and practices related to religion
correct relation between different parts in math, architecture and life
engraving a picture onto a metal plate to create a stamp
government by a few powerful people
heavy beam driven into the ground to support a building
heavy hammer
inactive or not moving
money paid by bride’s family to groom’s family
order someone to appear somewhere; e.g. a court summons
send away or exile so that a person is not allowed back again
simple restaurant
soldiers for hire without allegiance to a particular country


The Renaissance, which means ___________, began in _______ in the ______ century.  It was a time of some of the most important artists in history including ___________ and ______________. It was a time of important _____________ discoveries, too.  And wealthy people had time to think about new ___________.
    In the Middle Ages, people had a rather ________ outlook. Life was short and full of _____________. People hoped for _________  where they would have a happier life. Medieval artwork was full of __________ images to help people remember that a better life would come after ___________.
     In the Renaissance, though, people did not think so much of a life after death.  They thought about the great __________  and the great _______ from ancient ___________ and __________  and wanted to recreate that beauty in the world again.
    A new invention, the _______________, helped spread these new Renaissance ideas that life could get better if people ___________ hard.

Leonardo da Vinci        rebirth        Michaelangelo        Italy        14th                suffering        gloomy             ideas        heaven            religious        death                scientific
artists            Rome            Greece            ideas
worked            printing press

    But why did the Renaissance start in _________? The old Roman _______ and artwork inspired many Italians to create their own works of art. And the geography was a big __________. Cities, such as Venice and Genoa, along the _________ of Italy could easily trade with other places in Europe, Asia and __________. And all the _________ that people made with trade meant that they had more money to spend on creating and buying _______. In addition, some cities, such as Siena and Assisi, were on old well-travelled Roman _________ with lots of people ___________ along and ready to buy new goods. In fact, ___________ got so many travellers that it was the most powerful city in _________ for awhile.  Then there was the mild _________ that meant people could keep travelling and ________ things all year round and not get shut indoors during the cold, __________ winter months. That mild climate also meant that _________ food was available all year round and people had more time think about new __________ because they were not so busy ___________ to stay alive.

Italy       coast            Africa        ruins            help
 money    art            roads            travelling         Florence
Italy        buying        climate        fresh            muddy
working    ideas

   In the Middle _________, the manor was the most important way of organizing _________ but in the Renaissance, the ___________ was the most important way of ____________ land.  At the end of medieval period, when serfs and __________________ were leaving the _________ and going to towns, a huge shift took place. Towns grew into _________ and a new way of organizing land developed.  Remember that countries, as we know them, did not yet exist. Instead ___________ cities, surrounded by ___________ where ___________ could be grown, became the most powerful places.  The city-states sometimes hired soldiers, called ____________, and went to _____ against each other.

land            city-state        organizing        Ages
freeholders        cities            crowded        manors
food            mercenaries        war            hinterland

    Hundreds of years later,____________ became the most important
political forces.  We are used to thinking of countries as being independent and ____________.  But nowadays, huge  _______________  corporations are becoming the most powerful __________ on earth. These huge ____________ operate in many countries and try to have _______ changed so that they can make more ___________ for their ________________.

     powerful        multinational    forces    countries
    laws            money            shareholders    companies


Basic level:
For each person, discover…
a. date of birth and death
b. nationality
c. contribution to the world

Higher level:
Organize all these people into a system of your choice, providing the information listed at the basic level:
a. by country
b. by century
c. by field of contribution

Highest level:
Complete a project of your choice:
1. Make an illustrated and coloured mindmap.
2. Write an essay on one of these topics:
a. Who are three of the most important people of the Renaissance?
b. What country made the greatest scientific contribution to the world?
c. What country made the greatest artistic contribution to the world?

Albrecht Durer
Artemisia Gentileschi
Filippo Brunelleschi
Francis Bacon
Francesco Petrarch
Galileo Galilei
Giotto di Bondoni
Isaac Newton
Johann Gutenberg
Johannes Kepler
Leonardo da Vinci
Lorenzo the Magnificent
Michaelangelo Buonarotti
Medici Family
Nicholas Copernicus
Rene Descartes
Tycho Brahe

1. It is not a surprise that the Renaissance started in Italy (Click HERE for information.)
2. The invention of the printing press changed society.
3. New artistic techniques developed during the Renaissance.

1. Renaissance Europeans were generally more optimistic than people of the Middle Ages.
2. People can improve themselves if they are willing to put forth effort. (Click HERE for ideas and information.)
3. Dictators are needed to maintain a peaceful country.
4. Disagreeing with powerful people –  kings in the Middle Ages, the Church during the Renaissance, or governments today – can lead to unjust imprisonment or death.
5. The Renaissance changed how people in Europe viewed the world.


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