Pico Della Mirandola's Oration On The Dignity Of Man

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As humans we are placed at the very center of the world with the unique ability to shape our own destiny and exercise our free will in the pursuit of virtue. This very humanistic ideal was championed by the 15th century philosopher Pico della Mirandola, in his book “Oration on the Dignity of Man” (1486). The very notion that we could have such power similar to a Creator or a Divine entity was—at the time— considered heresy by the Papacy. But why did they consider it heretical? The answer is quite simple: It was a shift from the accepted Roman Catholic ideals of stringency during the Middle-Ages. It also proved to be a strategic move towards Classical thought and aesthetics (which was the equivalent to an intellectual and spiritual rebellion). Thus this marks the age of the Renaissance, the rebirth of learning—the rekindling of ideas. Which was accompanied by a myriad of masterpieces that first flourished during the 14th century (quattrocento) and by the 15th century (cinquecento), experienced the pinnacle of artistic achievement that blurred the lines of what constitutes a magnum opus and is …show more content…
He was commissioned to paint frescos in the pope’s private rooms in the Vatican: Stanza della Segnatura, Stanza d’ Eliodoro, and the Stanza dell’Incendio. The Stanza della Segnatura stands as the most important because it displayed the four cardinal virtues (Philosophy, Theology, Law and Justice and the Arts), a topic that was chosen by Pope Julius to decorate the walls of his library. The School of Athens, painted between 1510 and 1511 portrayed the cardinal virtue of Philosophy and depicts the most recognizable philosophers of the Classical Age in Greek history. It represents the pinnacle of human achievement and the results of the pursing truth and virtue. It forms the basis of the union of Classical-Pagan thought and

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