Changes Brought on By the Renaissance Period Essay

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16th century Europe was a time of religious and social change. It was a time of new art, architecture, and literature through the Renaissance and new discoveries through the scientific revolution. The 16th century also brought about great change in religion through the Protestant and Catholic Reformations. The Protestant Reformation and Catholic Reformation of the 16th century greatly changed individual freedoms, individual liberties, and the influence of religion.
The start of the Protestant Reformation came when Martin Luther posted his 95 Thesis on the doors of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany. (Encyclopædia Britannica “Reformation”) Luther believed the Catholic Church was corrupt, citing the indulgences as a main example. In France, John Calvin spread Protestant ideas through Calvinism. In 1536, Calvin published Institutes of the Christian Religion, which outlined the ideas of Protestantism. (“Reformation” Encyclopedia Britannica) Another form of Protestantism formed in England when Henry VIII established the Anglican Church after the pope refused his divorce. All of this came at a time of great innovation, including the printing press technology of Johannes Gutenberg. The Gutenberg printing press made mass distribution of not only Bibles, but also Luther’s 95 Thesis and other Protestant works capable. Luther’s teachings placed importance on the individual, especially gathering one’s own ideas of faith from reading the Bible. Luther’s focus on individualism…