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Architecture since 1400$
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Kathleen James-Chakraborty

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780816673964

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816673964.001.0001

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Resisting the Renaissance

Resisting the Renaissance

Chapter:
(p.75) 6 Resisting the Renaissance
Source:
Architecture since 1400
Author(s):

Kathleen James-Chakraborty

Publisher:
University of Minnesota Press
DOI:10.5749/minnesota/9780816673964.003.0006

This chapter focuses on why the Renaissance met considerable resistance in northern Europe. It argues that their slowness in adopting Renaissance forms was not because of ignorance or provincialism. Rather, northern Europeans considered themselves unique from Italians and used architecture to express that difference. Many Protestants, for instance, did not want to imitate what they saw as the architecture of the Catholicism whose doctrines and political control they rejected during the Reformation. Wherever the northern European urban middle class successfully resisted the encroachment of absolutist monarchies or papal authority, Gothic forms and types endured. Although northern Europeans often employed Renaissance and baroque details in their dwellings, places of worship, and civic buildings, these seldom masked this latent medievalism. Moreover, rulers, noblemen, and burghers alike located their claims to political power in medieval precedents that were an important component of national and local pride.

Keywords:   Italian Renaissance, northern Europe, Renaissance architecture, northern Europeans, Protestants, Catholics

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