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16th century

Leonardo, Cranach, Michelangelo, Raphael, Holbein, Bruegel, Bronzino, Titian, Veronese

The leading artists of this period achieved a fame that has never diminished. Especially in Italy, Renaissance painters sought to rival and surpass the artists of ancient Greece and Rome.

Portraitists were highly prized and pictures of ancient history and mythology became almost as important as Christian subjects. Paintings were appreciated for their artistry as much as for their subject matter, and often placed in specially created galleries.

Next: 17th-century paintings

Titian, 'Bacchus and Ariadne', 1520-3
Titian, Bacchus and Ariadne, 1520-3