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SR-05-New Worlds

SR-05-New Worlds - By facilitating the multiplication...

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The New Worlds of the 16th Century Exploration Portuguese began sailing down west coast of Africa in 1400s, seeking route to Indies. Established research center at Sagres; improved ships, magnetic compasses , celestial navigation , cartography. Spanish took up Christopher Columbus, financed his 1492 voyage into Atlantic. Dawning realization that he had discovered a ‘new world’ fed 16th c. Europeans’ confidence that they could surpass the ancients and produce new knowledge. The Printing Press Elizabeth Eisenstein, The Printing Press as an Agent of Change (1979) Adrian Johns, The Nature of the Book (1998) Before about 1450, all texts were hand copied and were relatively rare and expensive. Manuscripts, especially of technical material, were often corrupted during hand copying; knowledge tended to decay over time. Around 1450, Johann Gutenberg of Mainz, Germany, devised movable type printing press . Technology spread rapidly through Europe.
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Unformatted text preview: By facilitating the multiplication, dissemination, preservation, and comparison of texts, printing helped transform the material basis of European intellectual life in 1500s. The Protestant Reformation In 1517, Martin Luther posted his ‘theses,’ bringing to a head longstanding doctrinal and political tensions within the Catholic Church. His ideas spread rapidly through printed books and pamphlets; set off schisms and later religious wars; led to split between northern and southern Europe. Catholic Church responded by launching Counter-Reformation : Council of Trent (1545–63), tightening of doctrine and discipline; founding of Jesuit order. Continual wrangling over who should interpret Scripture, and how, fed an undercurrent of skepticism in the later 16th c. that affected attitudes toward all knowledge, including science. Varied responses to such skepticism became a major theme in the Scientific Revolution....
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