Several institutions developed in both France and England in the 13 and 14th century and these institutions were behind the civilization of western countries. The first institution was the church. Many crusades were made in these countries facilitating the spread of Christianity. When church became an institution in these countries, leadership became a major issue and specifically the catholic leaders became too much involved in political affairs. They controlled monarchy in England that had a lot of power (Noble, 156).
Schools are some of the other institutions that were very important during the period. Many people got their education during the period. Schools developed due to the spread of Christianity in the region. The churches in the region started many schools and offered scholarships to people. Feudalism began at the same period. This institution aroused due to the increased population in the countries. The owners of land maximized production of agricultural products through exploitation cheap labor from those who did not own land.
All these institutions played a role in the civilization of these countries. In the first place, these institutions facilitated growth of towns. The output from the feudal system was sold at the market place. This means that agricultural output led to trade that led to urbanization. The leaders of the church and the government stayed in these towns. The agriculture output was an important source of raw materials in the manufacturing sector. Education also produced individuals who came up with various innovations that facilitated development of industries. Educated individuals also moved to towns to seek for employment in industries.
The northern humanism and Italian humanism had both similarities and differences. Whereas the northern humanism was more concerned with the Christianity issues, the Italian humanism ignored the reality demonstrated by the religious environment. The northern humanists were referred to as Christian humanists as they were more concerned with the reforms in the church (Noble, 72). They advocated for development of schools so that the spread of Christianity could become easy. Italian humanists were more concerned with political leadership positions. They were a group of rich individuals who came from wealthy class in the society.
The northern humanism did not spread so much as compared to the Italian humanism. Many parts in Europe adopted the characteristics of Italian humanism. Northern humanism was also concerned with better leadership in the country. They discouraged any form of corruption among the leaders. The Italian humanists were more concerned on taking control of the leadership positions as well as accumulating wealth.
Regardless of the many differences, Italian and northern humanism had common features. Education was a major aim of these two groups. They concentrated on classical studies in schools that led to qualified doctors’ lawyers and other important professions. Grammar schools were also emphasized in both groups so that the people least their language. They were also both interested in the leadership of their countries. These were the common interests that these two groups had. These similarities are what unified the two groups.
Several factors facilitated the separation of the England church and the Catholic Church. The end of feudalism and protection of the citizens by the laws that were implemented contributed to the separation. Press improved and many bibles were available for reading. When people found out that the teachings of the bible did not match the acts in the church, they opted to separate from the church (Akkerman, 142).
Some people realized that the leadership in the church was rotten. The leaders were there to accumulate wealth through the influence they had over the government. These leaders engaged in corruption activities. These acts created conflicts among the leaders and some opted to separate from the original church.
The people in the church also struggled for power in various government positions. The pope wanted to control the government largely by exercising a lot of powers. When some leaders realized that some people in the church were not following the teachings of the bible but were there to benefit economically and politically, they decided to separate due to lack of trust.
Jan Hus and john Wycliffe were against several issues that were present in the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church argued that there was no need of interpreting the bible. These two individuals argued that the people had the ability to read and interpreted the bible. They therefore advocated for the interpretation of the bible in local languages (Olson, 89).
The two were also against much secular power that the pope possessed. They argued that this was not necessary since the government and the church are two different institutions that can never be together. They also argued that the pope was antichrist because he represented himself as a holy person whereas he was doing things that are against the teachings of Christ.
Jan and John also argued that the corruption that was present in the Catholic Church was unnecessary (Olson, 143). The two argued that the struggle to accumulate wealth among the catholic leaders was unnecessary. They argued that the earlier church was did not consist of rich people. They therefore wanted an end to the struggle to accumulate wealth by the catholic leaders.
The church responded negatively on the criticisms against it. The leaders were not willing to reform the church in any way. The leaders were not willing to adjust the practices that were present. The response was that nobody can be saved outside Catholic Church and hence the people should listen to the leaders of the church and obey them.
Italian humanism has several features. It emphasized that people should be all rounded. This means that this group encouraged people to gain knowledge in many areas of specialization. The other feature is that they valued individualism so much. They were concerned about the individual achievements in lifetime. This group emphasized on the advantages of living in the urban areas because of the many opportunities it gave (Akkerman, 201). They were more secular even though they believed in Christianity. The group claimed that freedom was of importance to individuals and control by the pope was unreasonable.
There was a slight difference between humanism and scholasticism. Scholasticism emphasized on reason to explain various things and actions of people. On the other hand, humanism depended on religion to explain a tradition. They specifically referred to the classical studies and the bible in their arguments instead of reason. Whereas scholasticism emphasized on reason only, humanism used both reason and religion to explain traditions.
The Italian humanists were interested in the classical education because they believed that it prepared individuals for achievements in the real world. They wanted people to learn and get knowledge on various issues so that the chances of achievement of such individuals would increase. They also aimed at developing people who have the ability to communicate effectively. According to them, such people would become leaders in future. The humanists also wanted to have people with various areas of specialization to improve the welfare of the society.
Olson, Carl E. Will Catholics Be "left Behind"?: A Catholic Critique of the Rapture and Today's Prophecy Preachers. San Francisco [Calif.: Ignatius Press, 2003. Print.
Akkerman, Fokke, Arie J. Vanderjagt, and A H. Laan. Northern Humanism in European Context, 1469-1625: From the 'adwert Academy' to Ubbo Emmius. Leiden: Brill, 1999. Print.
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Noble, Thomas F. X. Western Civilization: Beyond Boundaries. Boston, Ma: Wadsworth, 2010. Print Bottom of Form
Spielvogel, Jackson J. Western Civilization. Boston, MA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning, 2012