What happened during the Renaissance?

The Renaissance was a significant cultural change that occurred hundreds of years ago.

Renaissance artworks

The Renaissance period marked a notable part of European history. This era saw major changes in culture, politics, art, and economics, signifying a rebirth. Without a doubt, the Renaissance was an important era and had a huge impact on various fields.

What exactly is the Renaissance?

The Renaissance was a key period in art history, creating a great revival of artistic expression. The cultural movement saw a revival of Classical learning and wisdom across Europe. Some new discoveries and ideas came about from political to scientific laws, art and architecture, and religion.

A fun fact, the name “Renaissance” is French, meaning “rebirth”!

When the Renaissance happened

Starting in Italy, the Renaissance is believed to have started in the 14th century and finished around the 16th century. There were three major periods of the Renaissance: the Early Renaissance, the High Renaissance, and the Late Renaissance.

Raphael Rooms Renaissance art

Best artwork from the Renaissance

The main forms of artwork during this period were sculptures and paintings. Drawing inspiration from Roman and Classical Greek art, these artworks quickly became masterpieces.

Notable artists from this period include Michelangelo, Raphael, Donatello, Leonardo da Vinci, and Sandro Botticelli.

Can I see any artwork in Vatican City from the Renaissance period?

Vatican City boasts diverse pieces of Renaissance artwork, housed in the Vatican Museum and throughout the city.

St Peter’s Basilica

St Peter’s Basilica is a magnificent example of Renaissance architecture that still stands today. The Basilica took over 100 years to build. Visitors can see and explore St Peter’s Basilica for free, though it’s recommended to arrive early to avoid long wait times.

St peter's basilica

The Raphael Rooms

The Raphael Rooms are a prime example of Renaissance art, painted by no other than Raphael. The rooms are in the Vatican Museums, inside the Palace of the Vatican which was part of Pope Julius II’s apartment. There are four rooms: the Room of Constantine, the Room of Segnatura, the Room of Heliodorus, and the Room of Fire in the Borgo.

Sistine Chapel ceiling

A highlight to see while in the Vatican is the Sistine Chapel, particularly the ceiling! One of Michelangelo’s famous pieces is the fresco on the ceiling, a highlight of the High Renaissance.
You’ll have access to see the Sistine Chapel when entering the Vatican Museums.

Travellers to Vatican City can explore these masterpieces and hear more about the Renaissance period on a guided tour. The tour includes seeing St Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican Museums, and the Sistine Chapel.

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