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The English period began far later than the Italian, which was moving into Mannerism and the Baroque by the 1550s or earlier.
The English Renaissance was a cultural and artistic movement in England dating from the late 15th century to the early 17th century.
It is associated with the pan-European Renaissance that is usually regarded as beginning in Italy in the late 14th century.
Composers such as Thomas Morley, the only contemporary composer to set Shakespeare, and whose work survives, published collections of their own, roughly in the Italian manner but yet with a unique Englishness; interest in the compositions of the English Madrigal School have enjoyed a considerable revival in recent decades.
Despite some buildings in a partly Renaissance style from the reign of Henry VIII, notably Hampton Court Palace, the vanished Nonsuch Palace, Sutton Place and Layer Marney Tower, it was not until the Elizabethan architecture of the end of the century that a true Renaissance style emerged, influenced far more by northern Europe than Italy.
The English theatre scene, which performed both for the court and nobility in private performances, and a very wide public in the theatres, was the most crowded in Europe, with a host of other playwrights as well as the giant figures of Christopher Marlowe, Shakespeare and Ben Jonson.
Elizabeth herself was a product of Renaissance humanism trained by Roger Ascham, and wrote occasional poems such as On Monsieur's Departure at critical moments of her life.The significant English invention was the portrait miniature, which essentially took the techniques of the dying art of the illuminated manuscript and transferred them to small portraits worn in lockets.Though the form was developed in England by foreign artists, mostly Flemish like Lucas Horenbout, the somewhat undistinguished founder of the tradition, by the late 16th century natives such as Nicolas Hilliard and Isaac Oliver produced the finest work, even as the best producers of larger portraits in oil were still foreigners.Philosophers and intellectuals included Thomas More and Francis Bacon.All the 16th century Tudor monarchs were highly educated, as was much of the nobility, and Italian literature had a considerable following, providing the sources for many of Shakespeare's plays.Renaissance style and ideas, however, were slow to penetrate England, and the Elizabethan era in the second half of the 16th century is usually regarded as the height of the English Renaissance.The English Renaissance is different from the Italian Renaissance in several ways.Typically, the works of these playwrights and poets circulated in manuscript form for some time before they were published, and above all the plays of English Renaissance theatre were the outstanding legacy of the period.The works of this period are also affected by Henry VIII's declaration of independence from the Catholic Church and technological advances in sailing and cartography, which are reflected in the generally nonreligious themes and various shipwreck adventures of Shakespeare.The desire to let people read the Bible for themselves led William Tyndale to publish his own translation in 1526.This would become a predecessor to the King James Version of the Bible, and his works influence on the vernacular contributed more to English than even Shakespeare.