Renaissance The World

CPA British Literature

Introduction to the World

The Renaissance was one of the greatest periods of enlightenment in the history of the world. During this time literature, science, and philosophy began to make a great impact on the world. The scientist’s explorers and philosophers of this time discovered new lands created new religions and created new inventions that would shape the modern world for generations to come.

Sir Francis Drake

By: Kenny P

Sir Francis Drake was born in the country of England in the year of approximately 1543. He was born into an extremely large family as he was one of twelve sons to his parents, large families like this were not uncommon a long time ago because the death rate at birth was much higher than it is today due to the lack of medical equipment and understanding at the time. This made people have more kids to ensure that some would live.

As a young lad Sir Francis Drake was always inspired and was interested by the ocean.

He soon became a nimble and experienced sailor and as time passed on he became an admiral and a well-respected and successful navigator of his time. Sir Francis Drake was also appointed as a knight by the queen of England at the time which happened to be Queen Elizabeth I.

Sir Francis Drake was given permission to attack neighboring countries ships in order to protect his homeland country of England(Howard). He led the English in battle against the Spanish Armada and also against many other neighboring countries. Sir Francis Drake was a key figure in this battle for England as he led England to victory over the Spanish Armada. He was considered to be and English hero at the time and is still remembered for his courageous and outstanding acts during the war.

In 1519 at the age of 47 he was pronounced dead off the coast of Panama.

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Mayflower Landing

"Mayflower Landing, 1620." Map. American History. ABC-CLIO, 2014. Web. 16 Mar. 2014.

By: The Mayflower

Michelle A

The English government persecuted the Pilgrims and considered them to be nonconformists. During this time, some of the Pilgrims immigrated to Holland searching for their religious freedom. Pilgrims became concerned about the cultural influence of the Dutch and the chance of a war among Holland and Spain. A movement began to establish a colony in the New World in order to have freedom (Pilgrims).

By 1620, the Pilgrims had gained financial support for their mission on September 16. Traveling to the new world, there was a total of 102 Pilgrims leaving Plymouth, England to take their ship Mayflower. After 65 days at sea, they saw North America, on November 10. The Pilgrims sailed aboard the Mayflower in 1620, settling in Plymouth near the New England coast, on Cape Cod Bay.

The night before they embarked in the New World, for the settlement the groups' leaders enlisted the Mayflower Compact to provide some form of government. Originally the Pilgrims had moved to Holland to escape the horrible religious prosecution they tolerated in England. The Pilgrims settled in the English colonies because they wanted their children to grow up English, so they requested and received permission to colonize in the New World (Pilgrims land).

The Pilgrims were Separatists from the Church of England, who in 1620, left England to later establish a colony, know as Plymouth. The Pilgrims separated to form their own church. The Separatists were Puritans but unlike the usual tradition of Puritans because they chose to continue within the Church of England in order to pass changes. The Pilgrims did not believe at this point that the church could be purified of its remaining Roman Catholic liturgy and theology (Pilgrims).

Only a year later, the first real Thanksgiving took place in the fall of 1621 between the Pilgrims and the Indians. Thanksgiving brought people together from various and different cultures to peacefully rejoice the survival in a challenging land. Since this, the popular image of the celebration has served as a symbol world wide of cross-cultural togetherness, cooperation, and thankfulness, in difficult times. Thanksgiving is shown by writers, painters, and filmmakers, but also daily in our lives today. The celebration of Thanksgiving gives an better and enhanced description of one of the greatest historical events that anchors American nationhood (The Real First Thanksgiving).

Protestant Reformation

By: Nick P

The protestant reformation was a series of schisms within the Catholic Church for a number of reasons. Some believed that the church was corrupt others believed that the papacy did not have any real power over the church and others spilt for more selfish reasons such as wanting a divorce. My paper shall focus on three of the main reformers, Martin Luther, John Calvin and Henry VIII.

Martin Luther was born in 1483 in the country of Saxony. (World History: The Modern Era) He was a baptized Catholic who had originally went to school to study law but after a life changing experience decided to become a monk. After two years of monastic life Luther decided to right the 95 Thesis’, calling for the end to the churches corruption in matters such as the sale of indulgences. By the year 1521 the Pope had decrees that Luther was a heretic and the Diet of Worms sentenced him to death but Luther went into hiding instead, living in a castle. He then translated the Bible into German (at the time Bibles were only in Latin) and lived the rest of his life in more solitude than previously, he died in 1546 of an illness. Luther’s ideas sparked the beginning of the protestant reformation and Lutheranism is still one of the main sects of Protestantism to this very day.

Another one of the great reformers was a Frenchman named John Calvin. John Calvin was born in France in the year 1509. Calvin studied law and theology at the Universities of Paris and Orleans. In the year 1533 he converted to Protestantism and fled to the city of Basel. In the year 1536 he wrote his most famous work called the Institutes of the Christian Religion. Calvin’s ideas were somewhat radical believing in concepts such as preordination. Calvin then spent some time in Geneva trying to lead the reformation efforts their but was later thrown out when Catholics regained control of the city. He later opened a school for missionaries and finally died of tuberculosis in 1564.

The final reformer of the Catholic Church was an English king named Henry VIII. Henry was born in the year 1491. Henry’s early years in power were very bloody years due to the series of wars involving in England. One of the things that Henry is most famous for was him having six wives. One of these wives was the reason why he decided to break away from the papacy. Henry was married to Catherine of Aragon but he decided he wanted to divorce her because of her inability to produce him a male heir. But when he went to the pope to have the marriage annulled the pope declined and so Henry decided that he would break from the church and name himself head of the Church of England. Since he was now the head of the church he annulled the marriage himself. (Weir) He then proceeded to confiscate church lands and money from England. Henrys break was different than the other Protestant movements in many ways, first of all most of the Catholic ceremonies went unchanged. Henry proceeded to prosecute Catholics as well as people of other Protestant denominations. (Hamilton, Neil, World History the Modern Era). Eventually Henrys marriage ended badly, he continued to remarry four more times and as life went on Henrys health declined. In 1547 he died his son Edward proceeded to succeed him to the throne of England and the head of the Church of England or the Anglicans.

By the end of the Protestant reformation there were hundreds of different sects of Protestants. Lutherans Calvinists, Anglicans, Baptists and many more. Protestantism grew to take over much of Europe and North America. The ideas and efforts of the men who started this movement had rocked the world and had forever changed European society and politics even to this very day. The Reformation did more than reform Catholicism in reformed the western world.

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"ArsTechnica." Ars Technica. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Mar. 2014. <>.


By: Matthew L

When thinking about the beginnings of atronomy and the most prominent figures in the field two names always come up, Nicolaus Copernicus and Galileo Galilei. Copernicus was born in 1473 in Royal Prussia, Kingdom of Poland. He attended the prestigious University of Krakow where he received a doctorate canon law. He also went to the universities of Balogna, Padua, and Ferrara where he studied math, astronomy, medicine, and economy. Nicolaus was the definition of a renaissance man, he was proffesionally considered a physician, polyglot, classics scholar, translator, governor, diplomat, and economist.

Before doing anything major Copernicus worked for his uncle as a secretary and physician. Of all of his specialties he was most well known for his work as a mathmetician and astronomer. By far his most famous theory was the heliocentric model of the universe which states the the solar system revolves around the sun instead of the earth. He worked on this theory sometime before 1514. This theory helped to spark the renaissance due to its absurdity at the time and its revolutionary nature. Galileo proved this theory as a fact many years later (World History: The Modern Era). Aside from astronomy he developed two theories regarding economy. His quantity theory of money says that money supply has a direct, proportional relationship with the price level of goods. Also he created a version of Gresham’s Law before Gresham. Many of his principles are still used in the present day.

Although his works are held in high regard now at the time they were subject to controversy especially from the Catholic Church. His ideas caused people to question their relationship with God and nature (Lee-Browne 5). The heliocentric model of the universe he created completely changed the structure of the universe as people knew it at the time. This idea was frowned upon due to the highly religious society he lived in and the church believed that the earth was the center of the universe and not the sun because God put humans, which are in his own likeness on earth. Because he contradicted scripture his book On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres was suspended from being published (Lee-Browne 9). Several years later the Church threatened Galileo for supporting Copernican beliefs and eventually put him under house arrest until his death. Because of the uproar Copernicus’ theories cause he is credited with one of the forerunners of the renaissance, inspiring others to go against the norm.

Galileo Galilei

Nicole Burchill

Galileo Galilei was born on February 15, 1564 in Pisa, Italy. He was the oldest of six children. His parents were Vincenzio and Guilia Galilei. His family was good practicing Catholics. In 1574, Galilei and his family moved to Florence, where Galilei began to study at a monastery in Vallombrosa. He had told his father he wanted to become a monk, however his father disapproved. In 1583, Galilei studied medicine at the University of Pisa. Two years later, he had to leave school due to finance troubles.

While studying at home, Galilei became interested in math. He wanted to become a math professor. While looking for a job, Galilei wrote two books about physics. In 1589, Galilei became a math professor at the University of Pisa. When his father died in 1591, Galilei left Pisa and became a math professor at the University of Padua. In 1601, he and Marina Gamba, though not married, had three kids: Virginia, Livia, and Vincenzio. In 1605, Galilei performed many experiments involving magnets. This led him into discovering that a pendulum will always swing back and forth at the same time.

In 1606, he invented the first thermometer and the first military compass. In 1609, Galilei invented a telescope that magnified objects twenty times. Using this telescope, Galilei found Jupiter’s four moons: Io, Ganymede, Calliste, and Europa. After this discovery, Galilei was named “The Father of Modern Physics.”

In 1610, Galilei left his family behind in Padua. He then moved back to Florence. In 1612, Father Tommaso Caccini criticized Galilei’s works and said they were very close to being heresy. In 1616, Galilei went to Rome to defend his observations, however, Cardinal Roberto Bellamino ordered him to stop teaching about Copernican astronomy, which went against the Church. In 1630, Galilei requested for a license to print his book and it was published in 1632 in Florence. He had to go to Rome for trial, where he was put on house arrest for the rest of his life. Galilei went blind in 1638 and became very sick. He eventually died on January 8, 1642 as a result of having a fever and an irregular heartbeat. (Wilhelm)

In the 20th Century, multiple popes approved of Galilei’s works. In 1992, Pope John Paul II showed regret for not accepting his works and also for how the trial was handled.

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Project By:

Michelle Altieri, Nikki Burchill, Matt Lee, Kenny Pacheco and Nick Peloquin