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NATS 1760 Lecture Notes - Baptistery, Andreas Vesalius, Natural History

Natural Science
Course Code
NATS 1760
Edward Jones- Imhotep

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Natural Philosophy in the Renaissance
science and art are closely related
period 1350- 1600
1500-1550 historians call high renaissance, beginnings of early modern science
Humanism and the humanists
educational and cultural program based on study of the classics
rooted in idea that ancient greece and rome were the height of society
perfection and capacity of humans, believes recovers from Ancient Greece and
believed Ancient Greeks and Romans knew everything
product of recovery
educational program, a way of becoming something and an attitude toward
Ancient learning
based on classics of Greece and Rome
trained in subjects about what it means to be human and how to understand the
The natural philosopher
aims to describe the way that the world is
come up with general theories for all aspects of the natural world
often obsessed and concerned with causes and why things happen
why do heavens move the way they do?
Why do things fall?
The natural historian
about description
seeks to describe plants, animals, and minerals
give description of all the natural objects in the world
Aristotle: earth in centre of the universe
The role of science in visual representation
Perspective geometry and the 'School of Athens'
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uses optics (lines and light) to form how you should represent something
technique for representing a three dimensional image in two dimensions
Art as the mirror of the world
comes from the work of Flippo Brunelleschi
important architect
devises techniques for how you should draw 3 dimensional objects
takes a board goes to doors of cathedral in florence
board and mirror uses to see baptistry
looks through the hole and uses the mirror to draw the baptistry
comes up of good representation of what the baptistry looks like
begins to be so important becomes called reign and rutter of painting
emphasizes important of mathematics in representing the world
Two insights
commitment; art can mirror nature
mathematics can be used to gain knowledge about the world
Mathematics and natural knowledge
The role of visual representation in science
Andreas Vesalius
use humanism to elevate social position of field
used visual representations in order to augment status of discipline
born into family of physicians and pharmacists
becomes personal physician of the Emperor Charles the fifth
Galen most important physician in Renaissance
Vesalius believe medicine has become mess, wants to return it to it's classical
wants to revive ancient practice of surgery and dissection
wants to use dissection to turn anatomy into part of natural philosophy
in renaissance anatomy is seen at contemporary aspect, but surgery is practical
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