The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy

by Jacob Burckhardt, S.G.C. Middlemore (Translator), Peter Murray (Introduction), Peter Burke (Introduction)

Jacob Burckhardt was born in 1818 in Basel, Switzerland. He studied history at the University of Berlin and taught art history and the Italian Renaissance in Berlin and Basel. His essay, as he called The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy, was first published in 1860. Rich in its detailed account of the arts, fashions, manners, and thought of one of the most innovative eras in human history, this brilliant panorama of Renaissance life is also a thorough examination of the nature of civilization and of our place within it. Burckhardt’s encyclopedic knowledge, his mastery of style, and his genius for synthesis make this one of the few classics of history and the prototype for cultural history. Burckhardt’s The Age of Constantine the Great and Cicerone were published in his lifetime, and The History of Greek Civilization and Reflections on World History after his death in 1897.