1. Renaissance humanism was the response to the
method of critical thought which was taught by academics. Historians use the
term Renaissance humanism to distinguish it from later developments known as
1. The fact that Petrarch was the “Father of
Humanism” made Petrarch aware that a renaissance of classical learning was
necessary in his time.
1. Leonardo Bruni abandoned his earlier course of
studies to pursue the study of Greek Literature because Chrysoloras visited
Venice and introduced the study of Greek literature. The idea of learning
poetry, and philosophy drew Bruni to Chrysoloras, and he abandoned his earlier
1. The subjects Latin, history, the great Orators
of antiquity, and poetry made up the basic course of studies advocated by
1. According to Pico della Mirandola humans alone possess
liberty. This possession allows humans to determine the form and value their
lives shall acquire. The notion that people have the power to shape their own
lives is a key element in the modern outlook.
1. Pico’s view of the individual with that Saint
Augustine and Innocence III was that humans have the liberty to shape their own
lives, and their destinies are not determined by anyone besides them. Pico was
against astrology because of the conflict of astrology with Christian notions
of free will.
1. Niccolo Machiavelli’s advice to princes was a
break from the teachings of medieval political and moral philosophers.
Machiavelli’s advice was to reject that belief that Christian morality should
guide political life. Instead princes should only be concerned with preserving
and strengthening the state’s power and must ignore questions of good and evil.
1. Machiavelli’s view on human nature was seeing
the worst in people and believing that all people deep down are corrupt. Pico
della Mirandola’s view on human nature was that each individual shape their own