English Travellers Of The Renaissance By Clare Howard

 -  And people could spend their time, money and pains on
something which was truly pious.[8]

It was only a - Page 9
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And People Could Spend Their Time, Money And Pains On Something Which Was Truly Pious.[8]

It was only a few years after this that that pupil of Erasmus and his friends, King Henry the

Eighth, who startled Europe by the way he not only received new ideas but acted upon them, swept away the shrines, burned our Lady of Walsingham and prosecuted "the holy blisful martyr" Thomas a Becket for fraudulent pretensions.[9]

But a new object for travel was springing up and filling the leading minds of the sixteenth century - the desire of learning, at first hand, the best that was being thought and said in the world. Humanism was the new power, the new channel into which men were turning in the days when "our naturell, yong, lusty and coragious prynce and sovrayne lord King Herre the Eighth entered into the flower of pleasaunt youthe."[10] And as the scientific spirit or the socialistic spirit can give to the permanent instincts of the world a new zest, so the Renaissance passion for self-expansion and for education gave to the old road a new mirage.

All through the fifteenth century the universities of Italy, pre-eminent since their foundation for secular studies, had been gaining reputation by their offer of a wider education than the threadbare discussions of the schoolmen. The discovery and revival in the fifteenth century of Greek literature, which had stirred Italian society so profoundly, gave to the universities a northward-spreading fame. Northern scholars, like Rudolf Agricola, hurried south to find congenial air at the centre of intellectual life.

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