The chan of being - The correspondences



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Tudors inherited from the Middle Ages a series of beliefs on the order and stability of the world. It was represented in three forms: a chain, a series of corresponding planes and a cosmic dance.
The chain started from God and finished with the lowest of the inanimate things. At first there was the lifeless class, vegetative world, animals or men followed. The men were different from animals class because could use the reason. Then there were the angels linked to the men by the reason but freed from lower faculties. The Elizabethans were interested in human nature, in the contrast between passion and understanding. This view of world was vertical, instead the second view of world consisted of a series of horizontal planes, one below another in order of dignity but connected each other. These planets were the angelic plane, the universe, the State, the man, the other creatures. The third view, the cosmic dance, implied the concept that the universe danced to the music. The world was divided in levels. Each level was characterized by a sense of harmony. The angels danced to the dance of heaven, the stars and the planets danced to the dance of their levels and the earthly creatures reproduce the planetary dance. All the universe was governed by the God’s will and nature was this meas. The social hierarchy of a State was a product of the nature so the sovereign was the only chief of the “body politic”.
The concepts, connected with the medieval world, were aimed to tame the turbulent world of that period. It was characterized by geographic discoveries, the rise of middle classes, the political disorder and religious conflicts. Then Copernicus created a new model of universe with the Sun at the centre of the universe and all the planets driving around it. So there was the rise of a sense of doubt and ambiguity originated from the contrast between old and new ideas. The ideal of self- development was favoured by the new condition. Development signified that each man acted alone in first person.