Essay The School of Athens

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Biography of Raphael
“While we may term other works paintings, those of Raphael are living things; the flesh

palpitates, the breath comes and goes, every organ lives, life pulsates everywhere.”

-- Vasari

Raphael was born Raffaello Santi or Raffaello Sanzio in Urbino on April 6, 1483, and received his early training in art from his father, the painter Giovanni Santi. In 1499 he went to Perugia, in Umbria, and became a student and assistant of the painter Perugino. Raphael imitated his master closely; their paintings of this period are executed in styles so similar that art historians have found it difficult to determine which were painted by Raphael. In 1504 Raphael moved to Florence, where he studied the work
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The famous School of Athens, on the wall beneath Philosophy, portrays an open architectural space in which Plato, Aristotle, and other ancient philosophers are engaged in discourse. On the wall under Poetry is the Parnassus, in which the Greek god Apollo appears surrounded by the Muses and the great poets. (Paoletti, 347) Others describe the frescoes in the Stanze as “related to three fundamental ideas of Christian Platonism, The True, The Good and The Beautiful. The Disputa corresponds to theological or revealed truth, and the School of Athens to philosophical or rational truth; the frescoes of the Virtues, canon law and civil law correspond to the Good; and the Parnassus to the Beautiful.” (Daley, 114)



The Intellects:

In the center of the painting is Plato on the left and Aristotle on the right. These two are showing the two parts within philosophy, Timaeus and Ethics. The other philosophers on the sides are ‘corresponding to the separate schools of thought within the two major divisions, each carrying on the philosophical arguments for which they were famous (Fleming, 304). Plato: (428-c. 347 BC) was a Greek philosopher and one of the most creative and influential thinkers in Western philosophy. Plato founded the Academy in Athens, the institution often described as the first European university. It provided a comprehensive curriculum, including such subjects as astronomy, biology, mathematics, political theory, and…