Northern Renaissance: Humanism, Christian Humanism & Skepticism

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Desiderius Erasmus Dutch scholar ( ) Most famous of all northern humanists Earned living by writing Devout Catholic, despite his criticism of the Church

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<p>Northern Renaissance: Humanism, Christian Humanism &amp; Skepticism Christian Humanism Characteristics: Part of the Northern Renaissance Emphasis on early Church writings rather than on Greek or Roman texts Emphasis on education and human intellect to bring about change Writings led to criticism of Church and eventually to Reformation movement Desiderius Erasmus Dutch scholar ( ) Most famous of all northern humanists Earned living by writing Devout Catholic, despite his criticism of the Church Erasmus In Praise of Folly (1513) Written in Latin, bestseller second only to Bible by 1550 Satirized European society &amp; superstition Criticized the immorality and hypocrisy of Church leaders Inspired calls for reform within Church, including Martin Luther - Erasmus lay the egg that Luther hatched Sir Thomas More English lawyer and government official ( ) Example of civic humanist Served as Lord Chancellor to Henry VIII the most saintly of humanists, the most human of saints More Utopia (1516) Humanistic masterpiece, radical for its time Mixed civic humanism with religious ideals to create a perfect (utopian) society on an imaginary island People should live by reason, giving up material goods for the common good On Utopia, war, poverty, religious intolerance and other problems of society did not exist Michel de Montaigne French noble, politician, scholar ( ) Skepticism questioning what can truly be known What do I know? Created essay form of writing about subject Essays (1580s) very influential on European thought urged toleration for all ideas since nothing could be known for certain William Shakespeare English playwright, poet ( ) Works reflected Renaissance idea of humanism focus on individual, both good and bad Skepticism present in some later works like Hamlet</p>