The style of architecture known as the Renaissance began in Florence, Italy in the 15th century. From there it became popular throughout Europe. This architecture became preferred over the medieval Gothic style. The inspiration for it was from the Roman ruins in Italy. Books created by ancient architects were the inspiration.

Key Elements

*There are three types of buildings that were built during this time. They were villas, churches, and palazzos. The palazzo was a town residence and the villa was a residence in the countryside. They are common in all of Europe.

*Renaissance buildings have flat classicism. The walls of the buildings do not have physical depths as part of their decorations. The flatness is the reason the curved lines are not part of these buildings.

*The most common decorative elements are string courses, pilasters, pediments, and arches. The various stories of the facades are identified with decorations. This makes it possible for people to look at a Renaissance building and easily tell if it is one or two stories high.

Vibrantly Painted Interiors

Geometrical Shapes


The Renaissance is a combination of pagan culture and architecture changed for Christian tradition. The images in a building that may have been a pagan temple are now made to honor God. This can be seen from how the interiors and exteriors have been created.

Architecture is always an interesting study, especially when you can study multiple cultures at the same time. Renaissance architects often combined elements of the ancients along with their own techniques to create a wide variety of buildings; as such buildings from the era are interesting to look at in order to determine which techniques were copied from Romans and Greeks and which were completely fresh to those of the era.

Mixing Ancient Elements


Linear Perspective

With that information, a trip to Italy becomes much more interesting. You will find yourself looking at buildings and asking yourself what the architect was thinking and what he was trying to accomplish. Given how much of the architecture remains from the era, a simple trip will allow you to explore history from a fresh perspective as you look for all of the connections.

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Florida-based attorney Jorge J. Perez is a history buff occupied by many hobbies. Learn more at!