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Nicholas Terpstra

HIS243 Study notesWEEK ONE The Ruins of Rome P BraccioliniBackground Information y Italian writer scholar and humanisty Recovered a great number of classical textsknown as a rediscoverer of lost forgotten or neglected classical Latin manuscriptsy Friend and protg of Petrarchy Roman fonty First archeologistcompared the ruins he saw with the texts of writersy Former greatness of the buildingsy Fall of this empirefortunethe fate of this city offered a spectacle of the instability of fortuney Romethe most beautiful and magnificent of all those that wither have been or shall beparadisey Cruelty of fortune injustices of fortunestripped and eaten away at all the beauty of Rome and the former dignity and greatness of Rome y At the nod of fortune kingdoms are utterly transformedshows her power and inconsistency The Glories of the Latin Language Lorenzo VallaBackground Information y Excelled in Latin and Greek y Civic humanisthumanists who chose to put their knowledge of the classics to practical use in the service of their communities y Translated the biblefound many errors in the translation of the Bible Erasmus y Life of controversy and scholarshipy Showed that all human authorities could be questioned no matter how venerable or powerful y LATIN LANGUAGEnoblest and most divine fruit food for not the body but the soulo This language introduced the liberal artso No longer BARBARIANSy Romethe Latin language had strengthen their ownnot diminished their language but enhanced ity UNITING qualityy For not by arms or bloodshed or wars was its domination achieved but by benefits live and concord y Wherever the Roman tongue holds sway there is the Roman Empire y GREEKSgoing around and boasting about the abundance of their languagesBUT our one language is more effective than five of their dialectso In one Greece there is not one single language scandalous thing y When the Latin language flourishes all studies and disciplines thrivey Weep as he contemplates the state in which eloquence had once attained and the condition into which it has now fallen o For many centuries no one has spoken or understood Latin o Liberal arts have degraded for so long and almost diedbut in this age they have been aroused and come to life againcongratulated y I am confident that the language of Rome will shortly grow stronger and with it all disciplines will be restoredOn Virtu and Fortune Leon Battista AlbertiBackground Informationy Italian humanist renaissance many The Albertis were expelled from their native city Florence then travelled back to Florencey In his comedyargued a poor man dedicated to study could attain glory just as a rich many How to explain the family who have fallen and ruinedblame fortunebut blame fortune without just causey Families have fallen due to their own stupidity o Many foolishly attribute their own errors to the power of others y Men are themselves the source of their own fortune and misfortune o No one would say that when they gain power and wealth it should be attributed to fortune rather than ability y PAST PRINCIPALITIEScertain characteristics that enable states even without fortune to win and seize famey Look to ancient writers for instruction o His duty to collect these ancient texts and put them together for the peopley As ability goes so does fortunecomes through reviewing ancient texts Self Portrait of a Universal Man Leon Battista AlbertiIs thought of as a Renaissance Many Science music letters arts warlike games horseback law y Learned without teachersy EXPERTy Illnessesas cure turns to his studieswrites play at age 20 y He did not posses his native tonguestudied it and soon mastered ity Relativesslander him envious conspire against him cruel evilo For they took it ill to be exceeded in ability and fame by him who far inferior to them in fortune y Did not take revengepreferred to pay them back with kindness so they regret ity Sought informationwanted to learn what he was ignorant of and pretended to be ignorant to learn moreobservery Despised the pursuit of material gain y Never betrayed the secret of another but remained silent forevery Paintingspeople insisted they were not painted but real and naturaly Foretold of coming disasters y Could not endure cold and heatbut by persistence he learned to bear them o NATUREloathed garlic but he conquered himself o Showing by example that men can do anything if they will y Public goody Respected anything achievedeven poor writers were worthy of praise Dignity of Man P Della MirandolaBackground Informationy Important male renaissance theoristy Hunger for learning and a gift for languages mastered Greek Latin and Hebrew and studied Arabic and Near Middle Eastern languagesy ConclusionsPope prohibited the distribution of his booko Got in more trouble with the church fearful of his fascination with Jewish and Arab materialso Arrested and imprisonedescapedy Oration on the Dignity of Mancomposed as a preface to Conclusions o Humans are created specially by God and are the most favorable creatures not merely a link in the universal chain of being o Humans have the ability to rise upward toward the angels or sink downward to the level of beasts by indulging in their sensual appetitesy Number of sourcesQuran Persian Plato Aristotle Islamy Arabs Persians Davids testimonyy Nothing is more wonderful that manhighest admiration man is the most fortunate creature enviedy Created as a creature of undetermined nature o Confined by no limits o Man shall determine his own natureo Free willo You may fashion yourself in whatever form you prefer The Perfect Gentleman G Della CasaGood Mannersnecessary things for a gentlemany Measure and balancejester vs rude y Restrain from o Doing the needs of nature and washing hands filthy matter o Doing things that offend the sensesgrinding teeth whistling singing coughing sneezing yawning come so near fall asleep pare their nails play the drum with their fingers shuffle their feet say things their children wife or nurse told them talk about their dreamsill favored fashions y It is true that if a gentleman should use these fashions before his servants or in the presence of some friend of meaner condition than himself it would betoken no PRIDE but a love and familiarity y Nor should a man speak anything against God or his saints y Not boast of his nobility his riches familys accomplishments y Men are beautiful thingsdifferent than beastsembrace this
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