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Tell me about your early life. I was born in Tuscany in 1452. My parents weren’t married, and my mother left to be with someone else when I was about five, so I was raised by my father and my uncle. I later on found out that I have 17 half brothers and sisters

Tell me more about your father He was an attorney, and he always liked my work. In fact, he sent me off to be an apprentice under Andrea del Verrocchio.

Where do you get all of your skills? Hard work, years of training, and I guess some natural talent

Exactly how many years of training did you have? I studied painting and sculpting under Verrocchio for, I think, 10 years

You seem to have a bit of a reputation for not finishing your projects, can you explain that? As an architect and scientist, I accomplished most of what I set out to do, but I guess you can say I have a short attention span. If I lose interest in something I may leave it behind, never to finish, and that’s just the way I am.

When I look at your writing, I often find it rather difficult to read. Is there a reason why you write backwards? I’ve always had trouble reading, and for some reason, I can read it better backwards than I can forward. The extra trouble people go through to read means that my ideas remain safe, so that’s a plus for me.

I hear that you’ve been working on something, do you mind telling us about it? Well, I’ve been working on this portrait of Lisa del Giocondo for about a year, and I’m using a new technique: Thin layers of paint and glaze. When I finish, this will truly be a masterpiece


Andreas Vesalius, a prominent Flemish physician born in Brussels, recently published a series of seven books about the anatomy of the human body. In these books, he contradicts the teachings of Galen, who was one of the most respected physicians of his time. The justification for this being that Galen’s teachings were based off of animal dissections, while his were based off of human dissections, which would not have been allowed in Galen’s time due to religious beliefs. The books, , contain detailed diagrams of the human body and its various internal structures. In the preface he states, “Our pictures of the body’s parts will especially satisfy those who do not always have the opportunity to dissect a human body, or if they do, have a nature so delicate and unsuitable in a doctor that though they are obviously captivated by a knowledge of humankind that is most pleasant to them and attests the wisdom (if anything does) of the infinite Creator of things, they cannot bring themselves actually to attend an occasional dissection.” These books, among his other works, is expected to increase the quality of care for patients with various physical conditions and diseases. Vesalius finished his education at Padua and became head of surgery and anatomy. He is now physician to the court of King Charles V and is likely to be on the court of the royal heir.


Dates that Changed the World

1215 - Magna Carta

Signed by King John, this document limits the power of the king and sets up a legislature to pass laws.

1397 - Giovanni de Medici moves to Florence

Lays the groundwork for a Florentine political dynasty that will be started by his son, Cosimo (pictured left)

1440 - Johann Gutenberg created the printing press in Germany

Knowledge is now accessible to the masses. One man can print hundreds more books than he could copy by hand

1453 - Gutenberg Bible printed

The first translation of the Bible into the vernacular removes the need to study Latin

1453 - End of Hundred Years War 1469 - Lorenzo de Medici rules Florence 1475 - Birth of Michelangelo Painter of the Sistine Chapel and sculptor of Pieta, David, and Madonna and Child

1475 - First English book printed


1487 - Bartholomew Dias reaches the Cape of Good Hope

Dias discovered the ocean gyres, making ship travel long distance takes less time.

1494 - Medicis forced out of Florence

The Medici family is forced out of Florence by an uprising

1492 - Rodrigo Borgia becomes Pope

He’s seen as a corrupt official that favors his family above the church. The Vatican hits rock bottom.

1492 - Columbus Discovers the New World

After sailing west to reach the Spice Islands, Columbus discovers a land that was previously unknown. Full of gold and treasures yet to be found, this New World is full of opportunity for trade and commerce.

1499 - Michelangelo completes Pieta


1512 - Michelangelo completes the fresco at the Sistine Chapel

1513 - Pope Leo X becomes pope Son of Lorenzo de Medici, a Medici becomes pope, shows the great power and influence that the Medici family held

1513 - The Prince, by Machiavelli published

Is it better, as a leader, to be feared or loved?

1517 - Martin Luther posts 95 Theses

Beginning of the Protestant Reformation

1517 - Leonardo da Vinci completes the Mona

Lisa (left)

1521 - Death of Ferdinand Magellan

Magellan dies in the Philippines after leading a trip to circumnavigate the world

1527 - Fall of Rome - end of the Italian Renaissance


Dear Madam Isabella,

Ask Isabella

Just a couple of weeks ago, my husband and I got married. I’ve come to find out that he isn't a good painter. We can't afford to live here in Italy. Should I teach him to paint? What should I do? -Worried Wife Wife, You should take your husband to see Leonardo Da Vinci. Recently, he finished painting the Mona Lisa, a painting of a woman, expressing her unique features and personality.

Dear Madam Isabella, I am a woman painter. I am a great painter but I am afraid of what people will say about my paintings just because I am a female. What should I do? -Woman Woman, You should come out of your shell. Even though there are mainly men painters, there are still great female painters such as Sofonisba Anguissola, Marietta Robusti, or Lucia Anguissola.

Dear Madam Isabella, I am catering at a wedding and I am not sure what I should cook. Do you have any idea what I should prepare? I would love to make a great impression on my food, for I know that many great painters are attending. -The Caterer Caterer, You should consider cooking a feast including: Quail, goose, venison, roasted boar, fish, roasted peacock, mutton, cheeses, nuts, fresh fruits, oysters steamed in almond milk, stewed cabbage, tarts and custards, and spicy mulled wine.


November 3, 1517

Gossip Alert

Earlier this week, a man by the name of Martin Luther wrote 95 Theses and posted them to the door of the Wittenberg Castle. Luther’s name has already spread throughout Germany, after someone took his words to a printer.

His teachings are based on salvation only by faith, words of the Bible, and equality. This has already made a serious threat to our pope! Not only is Luther trying to change our religion, but he has also founded Christian Churches, without the pope’s authority.

Why is he trying to start this “Reformation”? What exactly was wrong with what Johann Tetzel ’s teachings? Is this really the man we want to listen to? Who exactly is this guy? And is he really Catholic?


Classified Wanted More Italian scholars needed for focusing on the works of ancient Greece and Rome, works mainly compiled by Arabic, European, and Byzantine scholars.

An artist with a lot of experience. The artist must have similar painting styles to Michelangelo and must be prepared to present artwork to the pope.

For Sale Telescopes for sale. Created by Galileo, the telescope can help you look beyond the sky’s limits. Get yours today.

Paintings for sale. Come and get your very own, one of a kind painting, painted by Leonardo Da Vinci including pictures as famous as the Mona Lisa.

Sculptures for sale. Michelangelo is selling the sculptures David, St. Peter’s Pieta, and more.

Traded goods for sale. From trade routes, we now have silk, mace, and many spices.

Coming Soon The most important person of the northern Renaissance, William Shakespeare, the English play writer, is performing another one of his plays. Don’t miss it.


Works Cited Images: http://vesalius.northwestern.edu/noflash.html http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Michelangelos_David.jpg http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Michelangelo http://www.wikipaintings.org/en/leonardo-da-vinci/mona-lisa http://www.nybooks.com/blogs/nyrblog/2011/may/16/those-bad-borgias/ http://www.bl.uk/learning/images/bodies/illustrations/large7548.html Information: http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/historic_figures/vesalius_andreas.shtml http://www.history.com/topics/leonardo-da-vinci http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/379957/Michelangelo http://www.pbs.org/empires/medici/renaissance/michelangelo.html


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