The Medicis and other families maintained power of specific regions of Italy through the use of money and influence. They used their money to purchase influence from others in their regions. The Medicis were a banking family; other families were merchants. However, all of the families were wealthy. The families also used fear when necessary; they used both fear and generosity as needed. In this way, they exemplified the Machiavellian concepts of their city’s famous writer, Machiavelli.
My parents are not Machiavellian leaders today. They treat me as a rationale, intelligent adult. However, as a child, one could argue, that they engaged in Machiavellian techniques. They used both punishment and pleasure to ensure that I obeyed them. For instance, they might promise me some candy if they wanted me to behave at an event. However, they might also remove all my toys and my freedoms if they also wanted to control me. In this way, all parents likely fall under this description.
The focus of the Renaissance was a renewed interest in the arts, literature and philosophy of the classical period. For instance, Dante used the great Classical Roman poet, Virgil, to be his guide through hell in the work the Divine Comedy. Furthermore, the statues glorified the human body in much the same way classical work did. Michelangelo’s David is a clear example of this glorification. It is also a clear break from the Medieval Period.
Patrons were incredibly important in the role of Renaissance art. They gave artists such as Michelangelo and Da Vinci the money and the space to engage in their artistic pursuits. They also requested specific works from them. If they did not have this money, they could not have devoted themselves full time to their art.