Few periods in history have affected humankind more than the Renaissance.
Beginning in Italy about 1300 and spreading to other European countries,
this three hundred-year period bridged the gap between the late Middle
Ages and modern times.
It saw the end of feudalism and the beginning of strong national states.
It brought about a revival of interest in learning and in the cultures
of ancient Greece and ancient Rome, which in turn led to great achievements
in art, architecture, literature, science, and other fields of interest.
It was an age when people began to think more of the present-day world
than of the hereafter.
The Renaissance presents fifteen
stories that cover all aspects of the Renaissance. Beginning with “Federigo’s
Falcon” from Giovanni Boccaccio’s Decameron and ending with “The
Dragon and the Armada,” a story about Sir Francis Drake and the defeat
of the Spanish Armada, the book surveys the period in its totality. There
are stories addressing such famous artists as Leonardo da Vinci and Artemisia
Gentileschi and such important political thinkers as Niccoló Machiavelli
and Sir Thomas More. Other stories deal with manners, trade, religious
persecution, printing, and exploration. Of particular interest are stories
about Shakespeare, Henry VIII and his six wives, and Queen Elizabeth I.
There is even a story about the famous Silk Road that brought luxury goods
from China to Europe.
A carefully selected group of pictures and maps should make the book
both meaningful and appealing to young readers.