Thus, Lovato dei Lovati d. Albertino Mussato — of Padua, the most important of these early humanists, who wrote the Senecan tragedy, Ecerinis , and who was crowned poet laureate in , was also connected with the law. The Ecerinis deals with the 13th-century tyrant Ezzelino da Romano, and apparently Mussato hoped to influence the Paduans to oppose the aggressive moves of the Can Grande della Scala.
It would be unwise, however, to attempt on this basis a generalization respecting the political aspirations of these early humanists, because a great deal more research work still remains to be done concerning them Weiss II primo secolo dell'Umanesimo , Difficulties in the interpretation of the works of Francesco Petrarca, or Petrarch — 74 are of a different type. He wrote a great deal, and some of his statements are confused and contradictory. But there does seem to be in him, in spite of his egocentrism, a charitable concern to help his fellow men.
He believed that effective communication was essential, the right word must be found, and for this purpose the works of classical Latin literature were the perfect models. He was convinced that men should help their fellow men, and that the spirits of men can be helped especially through effective discourse. Learning how to use right words comes from study of the classics.
This was the objective, the studia humanitatis, for Petrarch, and to pursue such studies was the justification he would probably offer for his life of retirement, for the solitude he loved. See Garin 27 — His emphasis upon the importance of classical Latin rhetoric is seen in his work On His Own Ignorance and That of Many Others, in which he agrees that in Aristotle's Ethics he sees virtue "egregiously defined and distinguished by him and treated with penetrating insight," all of which causes him to know a little more than he knew before. But, he says, "I myself remain the same.
He who looks for that will find it in our Latin writers, especially in Cicero and Seneca … " tr. Nachod, in Cassirer There is nothing in Petrarch's attitude that is anti-Christian; on the contrary, he seems to be inspired by sincere Christian charity. But he is not satisfied with the medieval emphasis upon the theological. When his friend, Luigi Marsili, an Augustinian, was going away to study theology, Petrarch wrote to him, urging him to follow the example of Lactantius and St.
Augustine in conjoining the studia humanitatis with studia divinitatis, and thus to continue working for the construction of a pia philosophia see Garin His conviction of the superiority of classical literature was such that it was natural enough for him to consider the civilization that produced medieval literature, different as it was, the "Dark Ages. As to his political views, Petrarch centered all his hopes in Rome, believing that the world had never seen such peace and justice as it had when it had one head, and that head was Rome.
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He was enthusiastic about Cola di Rienzo until the more fantastic aspects of his activities began to be demonstrated. It seems, too, that Petrarch expected the papacy to make of the Pax romana, a pax christiana, and the fact that the popes were in Avignon, removed from Rome — where he thought they should be — disturbed him greatly.
One historian has even gone so far as to suggest that "Humanism was forged in the Catholic pathos generated by the seventy years of Babylonian captivity " G. Toffanin In regard to dictatorship, as opposed to republicanism, Petrarch had been critical of Caesar in his Africa, but praised him in his later Historia Julii Caesaris. He even became friendly with the Visconti tyrants of Milan, and decided to reside there in Boccaccio, the devoted follower of Petrarch in so many matters, nevertheless reproached him for this. Boccaccio lived long enough in Florence to become attached to its republican traditions, as Petrarch had not.
Giovanni Boccaccio — 75 had moved to Florence in , after having spent some time in Naples. He entered into the cultural life of the city, and served as an important link in emphasizing the contribution of Petrarch. In addition to his Decameron and other productions of a similar nature, Boccaccio did very serious scholarly work in classical Latin literature and culture and was one of the first to promote the study of Greek. He devoted himself especially to the preparation of treatises that would assist readers in understanding classical authors, such as his work on mythology, De genealogiis deorum gentilium.
Salutati and Civic Humanism. In , the year of Boccaccio's death, Coluccio salutati — the disciple of Petrarch and Boccaccio, became chancellor of Florence, and continued to foster their influence in that city. His writing reveals the development of the humanist movement into the civic humanism that was so important in Florence. His humanist attitude is seen in an exchange of letters he had with the Dominican Giovanni dominici on the values and dangers of the new humanistic trends.
Dominici was a formidable opponent, for he was well informed and fully aware of the value of the classics for mature students, but was opposed to placing so much emphasis upon them in the education of the young. Salutati was in agreement that Christianity came first, and had no intention of saying anything contrary to the Faith.
But he was convinced of the value of the new attitudes. He maintained that the studia humanitatis and studia divinitatis were interrelated, and a true and complete knowledge of the one could not be had without the other see Emerton — In one of his letters he expressed his conviction on the superiority of the active life, in behalf of family, friends, and the state.
In writing to a friend who was planning to become a monk he said: "Do not believe … that to flee from turmoil, to avoid the view of pleasant things, to enclose oneself in a cloister, or to isolate oneself in a hermitage, constitute the way of perfection … Without doubt you, fleeing from the world, can fall from heaven to earth, while I, remaining in the world, can raise my heart to heaven. As in the case of Petrarch, there is here no rejection of Christian doctrine as such, but there is a rejection of the ascetic ideal that had held so high a place in the medieval period.
Civic Humanism of Bruni.
The trend toward civic humanism, which is evident in Salutati, reached perhaps its fullest expression in the works of Leonardo Bruni. Although born in Arezzo, Bruni spent most of his mature years in Florence. He studied Greek under Manuel Chrysoloras there, and came also under the influence of Salutati.
After service in the Roman Curia from to , Bruni returned to Florence, where he became chancellor in , a post he held until his death. The numerous Greek works translated by him included the Ethics and the Politics of Artistotle. These works very likely confirmed him in his belief that the study of politics must have a central place in the educational process, since that study is connected with the bringing of happiness, not just to one man but to the entire population.
He considered that the study of politics should be a part of moral philosophy, and that in the classics of the ancient world one could obtain knowledge of those things that concern life and morality, and which, therefore "are called humanitatis studia, inasmuch as they perfect and elevate man" quoted in Garin Cicero was recommended for such studies, but Lactantius, St. Augustine , and the other Fathers were mentioned also. Boccaccio had praised Petrarch, together with Dante, for the restoration of poetry.
Bruni went further and hailed Petrarch as the founder of a new discipline of literary studies. While these 15th-century humanists had progressed sufficiently to realize that Petrarch's Africa could not match the poetic achievements of Vergil's Aeneid , Bruni nevertheless praised Petrarch as the one who restored the humanities to life when they were already extinct, and "opened for us the path upon which we could cultivate learning" quoted from Dialogi ad Petrum Paulum Histrum , in Baron Perhaps the most remarkable presentation of his civic humanism is found in the funeral oration that Bruni composed in , eulogizing Nanni degli Strozzi, a general who had been important in the Florentine coalition that prevented the Visconti tyranny from dominating northern Italy.
The oration is a Renaissance counterpart of the funeral oration in which Pericles — as reported in Thucydides — had praised the free institutions of Athens. Florence, said Bruni, had "revived and rescued from ruin Latin letters, which previously had been abject, prostrate, and almost dead. Some observers consider that the paintings of Masaccio c. It would seem, too, that the interior of the Chapel of San Lorenzo, designed by Brunelleschi — , the Florentine architect, emphasizes the dominance of man in this world, just as clearly as the high nave of Chartres Cathedral emphasizes the otherworldliness of medieval civilization.
Theophilus 10th century , in writing about the nature of art, stated that the achievement in art is "in glorifying the Creator in His Creature, in causing God to be admired in His works. It should be realized that not all Renaissance humanists advocated civic humanism in the same way as Salutati and Bruni. There were those also who served the tyrants and princes, and there were those who did not place emphasis upon the active life. When Cosimo de' medici returned from exile in , Francesco Filelfo — left florence and then spent much of his time writing in opposition to Florence and the Medici.
He went to Milan, where he placed his scholarly services at the disposal of the Visconti tyrants. He served the Ambrosian republic during its short life in Milan, and then Francesco sforza, after he gained control of the government in In his earlier life Filelfo had spent seven years in Constantinople, and when he returned to Italy in , brought back a large number of Greek manuscripts, as well as a member of the Chrysoloras family as his first wife.
Nevertheless, in his De morali disciplina libri quinque , he did not emphasize the active life or civic humanism of Salutati and Bruni, but praised wisdom, which he defined as knowledge of things divine.
Wisdom contemplates the eternal and immutable, rather than the temporal and mobile see Rice 50 — Bruni had praised the republican freedom of Florence, but Filelfo wrote his epic poem, the Sfortias, to glorify the most successful of the condottieri, Francesco Sforza, who had gained control of Milan solely by military ability, unscrupulousness, and force.
Pontano — was similar to Filelfo in many respects.
He had served the tyrannical Aragonese kings of Naples, and received many favors from them. Also, in contrast to Bruni and Salutati, in his De prudentia, Pontano insisted that the prudent man, skilled in civic affairs and business cannot be the wise man who concerns himself with investigating the principles and causes of things see Rice 53 — It would seem, then, that Bruni's civic humanism cannot serve as a general definition of Renaissance humanism, though it certainly was a very important development within that movement see Kristeller, in Helton That Bruni's thought developed in the way that it did must be considered as due in large part to the historical actuality of Florence, which had taken the lead in the later 14th and earlier 15th century in defending central Italy and preventing it from falling completely under the domination of the Visconti tyrants of Milan see Baron passim.
It may well be that "the Renaissance would have been nipped in the bud if Florence had become a provincial town within an Italian kingdom under despotic Viscontean rule" Baron — However, throughout Italy, except for Florence and Venice, the trend of the 14th century was from relatively free communes to one man rule of the signorie and princes. And, although there is much to be said in favor of the government of Florence or Venice when compared with tyrannies like those of the Visconti, it is nevertheless true that from the early 14th century, Florence and Venice were ruled by small oligarchies of wealthy businessmen rather than by the citizens generally.
Furthermore, however much the Florentines might complain about the aggression of the Visconti, the Florentines themselves were little different, as they brought the other areas of Tuscany under their control. The Visconti had gained control of Milan in , and, except for about ten years in the early 14th century, had held it constantly until After the short-lived Ambrosian republic, Francesco Sforza d. Other princes and despots of the 14th and 15th centuries included the Este family of Ferrara, the Malatesta of Rimini, and the Bentivoglio family of Bologna.dongthitravel.com/169-generisch-chloroquin.php
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Florence under the Medici. In Florence the executive power was in the hands of a kind of city council — the eight priors and the gonfalonier of justice. The priors were selected by the guilds, but from the early 14th century, a majority of places were allotted to the Seven Greater Guilds, made up of the very wealthy, such as the bankers and great merchants. The Lesser Guilds, including lower tradesmen such as bakers and shoemakers, were allotted only a minority of places. Furthermore, from the s, the priors were picked by lot, their names being pulled out of an election bag at two-month intervals.
The trick in controlling the government was to have charge of the committee that determined which names would be allowed to go into the election bag, and which would be excluded on one pretext or another.
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In this way the oligarchy could see that enemies did not become priors and that friends did. In there was a revolt of the ciompi, as the wool carders were called, and this led to lower-class control of the government for a short time. But, by the wealthy oligarchy, led by the Albizzi family, was back in control, which it maintained until , when Cosimo de'Medici d. Cosimo de'Medici held public office for only three terms of two months each, but in effect he was in complete control as the dictator of the city from to On the one hand, he was able to see to it that only names of Medici supporters got into the election bags, and that enemies of his regime had their taxes raised so high that they had no alternative but to move out of the city, as happened to Giannozzo Manetti.
On the other hand, Cosimo spent much of his great wealth in the patronage of arts and letters, so that Florentines could be proud of their city and thank the Medici for making it so beautiful and famous. It appears to have been Cosimo's money and influence that caused the general council that had opened in Ferrara in to be moved to Florence in One of the Greek delegates was Georg Gemistos Plethon, whose lectures on Plato were important in initiating the great interest in Platonic philosophy among the Florentines.
This interest led to Cosimo's patronage of Marsilio Ficino — 99 , who later was provided with a monetary allowance and a home near the Medici Villa Careggi. Important also in the maintenance of Cosimo's position was the successful foreign policy he pursued. In the years following his return from exile in he continued the alliance with Venice, for protection from the aggression of Filippo Maria Visconti of Milan — But after the death of this last of the Visconti, Cosimo broke the link that had existed with Venice and allied himself with Francesco Sforza.
Cosimo realized that Venice was now more of a menace than Milan. He perceived, also, that Sforza would make an excellent ally, since he would need Cosimo's financial support, whereas Venice would not. Venice soon saw the wisdom of coming to terms with Milan Peace of Lodi, and of joining in a league with Florence and Milan. By the papacy and Naples joined with the above three states. The Italian League thus formed was able to keep out foreign invaders and maintain comparative peace within the peninsula.
Historians have usually given Cosimo de'Medici chief credit for the formation and maintenance of this system, though recent studies have held that Francesco Sforza and Pope Pius II — 64 were equally important, if not more so, in keeping up a steadfast opposition to French interference [see V. Cosimo had been willing to maintain his control by such indirect methods, and without changing the constitution of the city, but his grandson Lorenzo the Magnificent d. In Lorenzo established a Council of Seventy.
This Council, which included Lorenzo and friends of the Medici, and which had the right to fill its own vacancies as they occurred, had the power to appoint committees from its own members, to handle foreign affairs, defense, internal security, and finance. Lorenzo's power became constantly more dictatorial until the time of his death.