The Renaissance Period
The Middle Ages followed the Renaissance, a time in European history. It brought a renewed interest in Classical study to Italy in the late 13th and early 16th centuries and then to much of Western and Central Europe.
Where Did Renaissance Diplomacy Develop?
We have so far outlined a more comprehensive picture of Renaissance diplomacy, which is thought to have originated among Italian city-states in the 15th century and is regarded as the precursor to modern diplomacy as we know it today. Renaissance diplomacy included permanent diplomatic missions and a crude ministry of foreign affairs based on diplomatic archives.
During this time, the Catholic Church’s influence started to wane progressively. France, Spain, and the Austro-Hungarian Empire were still emerging. The Italian city-states discovered a means to forge their internal political systems. Between 1350 and 1494, when France invaded Italy, it progressively came under heavy foreign influence, most notably the Habsburg was the time of the Italian Renaissance. From 1454 to 1494, Italian Renaissance diplomacy experienced its Golden Age. The conflicts between Milan and Venice ended in 1454 when Milan, Naples, and Florence signed the Peace of Lodi. After a century of conflict, this era was the first extended one of peace.
Up until France invaded Italy in 1494, there was peace. The Peace of Lodi formalized the diplomatic system among Italian city-states. His diplomatic conduct extended throughout Europe in the 16th century, reaching as far as England and Spain, first through ambassadors dispatched by Italian city-states to these nations and then through ambassadorial exchanges.
The Main Developments
The following developments during this period are essential for understanding how Renaissance diplomacy emerged:
Culture: During this time, great poets like Francesco Petrarca, Dante Alighieri, and Giovanni Boccaccio rose to prominence, and artists like Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Sandro Botticelli achieved their artistic pinnacles.
Society: In the middle of the 14th century, the bubonic plague outbreak caused severe harm to European culture. Some nations lost between 30 and 40 percent of their population, which had profound socioeconomic effects.
Church: The Roman Catholic Church’s Great Western Schism (Great Schism) (1378–1417). The two competing popes from Rome and Avignon’s claims to the papal throne hurt the Catholic Church’s reputation.
Discoveries: Significant discoveries were made during this time. The African coast had been surveyed and mapped by the Portuguese by 1488, all the way to the Cape of Good Hope. When Christopher Columbus accidentally found the New World in 1492, he encouraged the king and queen of Spain to try out the notion of sailing west into the Atlantic (North and South America).
Inventions: The printing press, created by Johannes Gutenberg, was one of the most significant (and, by far, most influential) inventions of the 15th century. It could produce up to 3,600 pages every workday and was modeled after current screw presses.
Politics: Hundreds of sovereign states made up Europe when the Renaissance in Italy started in the middle of the 14th century. In response to the unrest, the monarchs of France, England, and Spain consolidated their power, which sparked a rise in nationalism and a sense of pride and loyalty to one’s country.