What was the change?

Because people were able to trade, they now had more money to buy stuff. They were now paying taxes & their old poor lifestyle ended!

Short term effects?

It led to an increased interest in classical(Greek & Rome) culture. The invention of the printing press also led to books being more widely available, which encouraged an increase in literacy.

Long term effects.

If not for it, we would not have art, science, literature and more. Inventions such as the linear perspective and printing dates back from there.