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Class 11, Language Development, Unit 11 Arts and Creation


Class 11, Language Development, Unit 11 Arts and Creation

Unit-11 Arts and Creation

 Why is Renaissance Important?

Broukal Milada


Before you read

a. Why is this painting famous for?

Ans:- The portrait named Mona Lisa was painted by the great Italian painter Leonardo da Vinci, in between 1503-1506, and it is famous for the innovative style of painting, it size, color, attraction and beauty of the object, its smile, its eyes, background imaginary landscape etc.


b. Name any three famous writers/artists of Nepal. Also describe why they are famous for.


a) Laxmi Prasad Devkota: Laxmi Prasad Devkota was a Nepali poet, playwright, and novelist. Honored with the title of Mahakavi in Nepali literature, he was known as a poet with a golden heart. He is considered to be the greatest and most famous literary figure in Nepal. Some of his popular works include the best selling Muna Madan, along with Sulochana, Kunjini, Bhikhari, and Shakuntala.


b) Bhanubhakta was a Nepali poet, translator and writer. He was the first writer to translate the great epic Ramayana from Sanskrit to Nepali. Despite having other contemporary poets in the country during his time, he is revered and honored with the title of Aadikavi of the Nepali language. His poems were later published by the famous poet Motiram Bhatta


c) Parijat was a Nepalese writer. Her real name was Bishnu Kumari Waiba (Waiba is a subgroup of Tamang) but she wrote under the pen name Parijat (Parijat is a night-flowering fragrant jasmine flower). Her most acclaimed publication is Shiris Ko Phool.


Key Points from the Essay:

v Middle ages in Europe emerged from 476 AD to 1500 AD, since the collapse of Roman Empire. It is called a dark age because of lack of knowledge. Roman Catholic Churches were the most powerful things. Except few discoveries and inventions, the age totally banned art, literature, philosophies etc. 

v The period from late 14th century to 17th century is known as Renaissance Period, which is a shift from medieval value and cultures by a revival of classical learning, advances in physics, astronomy, exploration of new world, political and economic development in Europe. During the time art, architecture, philosophy, culture, science, exploration of new world reappeared or revived. This rebirth is called “Renaissance”, a foundation of modern art, architecture, science and philosophies.

v The capital city Constantinople of Byzantine Empire of the first Roman Emperor Constantine the Great was captured by Turks in 1453AD is the beginning of Renaissance. The study of classical Greek and Roman writers first appeared in Florence city of Italy, spread throughout the country and later spread across Europe.  

v In the begging, people were eager to know everything, and orthodox Christian beliefs were reformed (Protestantism) by a great reformer Martin Luther King who translated Bible from Latin language (an official language) into Germany.

v New system of government was established based on democratic values (government by people) of Ancient Greece (12th-9th Century BC). The great political thinker, diplomat, philosopher of the time, Niccolo Machiavelli wrote his famous book  “The Prince”, which suggested the ruler to be bad and dishonest for preserving power and government. He was criticized by people, but modern political thinkers respect some of his ideas.

v The trend of “New Learning” made skilled and talented people to create great work of arts such as pictures, sculptures, buildings, and literary works. One person was skilled in many areas calling them “Renaissance Man” or “Renaissance Woman”. Even in modern time a person having talent and skill in different areas is given such title.

v The growth of trade and banking made people wealthy in cities of Florence, Venice and Milan of Italy. They spent time and money for recreation in music, art, and poetry. As a result great Renaissance personalities such as Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and Raphael appeared. Michelangelo was famous for his painting on the ceiling of Vatican’s Sistine chapel.

v The renaissance architecture was developed by the great architect Filippo Brunelleschi. He blended old classical style with new idea to complete the unfinished dome because of its complexity of curved roof.

v There was also a great change is science because of Galileo, Keplar, and Newton. People had geocentric view of solar system, but Galileo said, the Sun is in the center of the Solar System, for which he was forced to recant his view.

v Development of Printing Press by Johannes Gutenberg also helps to spread renaissance idea. He published his book in 1455. It helped to publish books on varieties of areas such as travel, poetry and romance.

v There were also great discoveries in sea voyage. Great explorers such as Columbus, Vasco de Gama, Cabot, Magellan, and Drake appeared. Traveling helped to find out new world, new knowledge and ideas that added the values of renaissance.

v The new learning, curiosity, desire of Renaissance people brought drastic changes in people’s lives and formed basis for modern history.


Ways with words

A. Circle the correct meanings of the underlined words.

a. Martin Luther started a revolt against the conventions of the Roman Catholic Church.

i. Styles        ii. Creations           iii customs            iv. Writings


b. It blended classical styles with new ideas.

i. separated           ii corrected            iii. put side by side         iv. mixed together


c. The dome marks the beginning of Renaissance architecture.

i. indicates            ii. tells                   iii serves as a sign of      iv. makes


d. The arts flourished during the Renaissace.

i. were almost forgotten ii. grew and improved     iii. discovered       iv. stayed about the same.


e. The new passion for learning also led to amazing discoveries in science.

i. enthusiasm        ii. emotion             iii. logic                  iv. power





B. Study the examples of phrasal verbs and idioms.

Phrasal Verbs: A phrase (such as take off or look down on) that combines a verb with a preposition or adverb or both and that functions as a verb whose meaning is different from the combined meanings of the individual words. phrasal verb is a verb that is combined with a preposition (e.g. in, on, with) or an adverbial particle (e.g. up, out, off) the preposition or adverbial particle extend the meaning of the verb to create a new meaning. For example if you look at something, your eyes are focused on it, but if you look after something or someone, you take care of them.

Phrasal verbs pattern


verb + prep / adv + object


Look for and look after follow this pattern. The verb is followed by a particle and an object. The particle is not separated from the verb. Other common phrasal verbs following this pattern (and there are many of them) include: take after (resemble), fall for (fall in love with), come across (meet by chance):


I’m looking for my glasses. I’ve been looking for them all day.

Can you look after my cat while I’m away? I’ll pay you for looking after him.

take after my cousin. Everybody says I take after her.

I’ve really fallen for this guy. Have you ever fallen for anyone?

Did you come across any photos of the family when your were clearing out the attic?


Exceptionally with this pattern, Anton, the particle is separated from the verb when it is combined with a relative pronoun introducing a defining relative clause, as in:


He is the boy for whom I am looking.

This is the relative after whom I take.


But this is an example of very formal English. We would normally say:


He is the boy I’m looking for.

This is the relative I take after.


verb + prep / adv + object OR verb + object + prep / adv


Some phrasal verbs can be used in either of these patterns, verb followed by a particle then an object or verb followed by an object then a particle. To put on and take off (e.g. clothes) are examples of this type of verb:


Take that stained pullover off and put your tracksuit on.

Take off that stained jumper and put on your loose top and trousers.

I’ve put on a lot of weight since I’ve been driving to work.

I’ve put a lot of weight on since I’ve been using the car for work.


However, if the object is a pronoun it must be placed in front of the particle:


That sweater’s stained. Take it off.

You cannot say: That sweater’s stained. Take off it.





verb + prep / adv + zero object


Note that phrasal verbs can also be intransitive where there is no object:


The plane took off five minutes early.

Two hours later it touched down in Berlin.

The meeting dragged on and on and Reginald found himself dozing off.

When he came to, he noticed that an argument had flared up.


verb + adv + prep + object


A smaller number of phrasal verbs follow the pattern of verb followed by an adverbial particle and preposition (or double preposition) and then an object. Examples include: look forward to (anticipate with pleasure), get on with (form a good relationship with OR continue to do), put up with (tolerate):


I’m looking forward to the trip. I’m looking forward to meeting Jo.

I’ll get on with the ironing while you prepare supper.

He doesn’t get on with his sister, but he puts up with her childishness.


verb + object + adv + prep


Occasionally phrasal verbs follow this pattern. Examples include: talk out of (dissuade from), take up on (accept), let in for (assume responsibility for):


He insisted on taking his five-year-old daughter to the football match and I couldn’t talk him out of it.

I’d like to take you up on your offer of employment. I’m letting myself in for a lot of work but I wouldn’t want to miss out on this opportunity.


Idioms: Idiom is an expression that cannot be understood from the meanings of its separate words but that has a separate meaning.


C. What do the following idioms mean? Use them in sensible sentences.

i. a hot potato- a controversial issue

ii. once in a blue moon- something happens rarely

iii. a bed of roses- a comfortable or luxurious position

iv. when pigs fly- when something is never going to happen

v. miss the boat- fail to take advantage of an opportunity

vi. zip your lip- stop talking

vii. Fight tooth and nail- to try very hard to get something we want

viii. when life gives you lemon- to change the worst situation best

ix. goose egg - a score of zero



D. Match following phrasal verbs with their meanings.

a. Break down       - to stop functioning (vehicle, machine)

b. check out          - to leave a hotel

c. fed up                - tried of something or someone

d. fill out              - to complete a form

e. get away            - to escape

f. give away           - to give something to someone for free

g. give up              - to quit habit

h. look forward to - to wait anxiously for something or an event

i. make up             - to invent a story

j. passy away         - to die

k. put out              - to extinguish (fire)

l. take off - to remove clothes of shoes from the body, to depart as in airplane



A. Answer these questions.

a. What does the word Renaissance mean? Which language is it derived from?

Ans:- The word "Renaissance" means rebirth of ancient green and roman art, architecture, culture, philosopy, religion, science in Europ after the fall of a thousad years long period of dark age. This word is derived from French language.


b. What did the Greek scholars do in their new locations after leaving the Greek city?

Ans:- The Greek scholars taught Greek and shared their precious books in their new locations after leaving the Greek city.


c. How did 'new learning' teach people to think in different ways?

Ans:- The 'new learning' taught people to think in different ways  because it encouraged gifted people to pait picutures, make statues and buildings, and write great literature. Artists were skilled in many areas bearing the title of "Renaissance Man".


d. Describe the artistic developments of Renaissance in brief.

Ans:- Renaissance is a period of a great cultural revolutions. Artistic movements were fourished in a great speed. Trade and banking made people living in cities like Florence, Venice and Milan rich and they spent their money and time to enjoy music, art and poetry. Greatest artists such as Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphel, Filipo Brunelleshchi, Shakespeare, and Cervantes produced their master pieces. Michelangelo is famous for his beautiful painting on the ceiling of the Vatican's Sistine Chapel; Filippo is famous for the curved roofed dome. William Shakespeare became one of the greatest literary figures.


e. Name the three Renaissance scientists who made greate discoveries.

Ans:- The three great Renaissance scientists are Galileo Galili, Nicolaus Copericus, and Sir Issac Newton. Galileo invented telescope to observe and study heavenly bodies. He studied moon's craters and said that moon has mountains and valleys. He found out that Jupiter has four moons, formulated the Law of Inertia, found out that the Sun is in the center of the Solar System. Copernicus also brought the heliocentric view. He said that nine planets including the Earth move round the sun. Newton is famous for the Law of Universal Gravitation. He said every object attracts another object.


f. Who discovered the printing press? Which country was he from?

Ans:- The person who discovered the printing press in the Renaissance period is Johannes Gutenberg. He is from Germany.


g. Why is the development of the printing press considered as one of the gifts of Renaissance?

Ans:-  Before the development of the printing press, books were very scarce and expensive because they were written by hands in the then official Latin language. After the development of the printing press, books were made more cheaply and quickly. Books were published in different languages on varieties of topics such as travel, poetry etc. So the invention of the printing press is considered as oe of the gifts of Renaissance.


h. Name the five famous explorers of the Renaissance.

Ans:- The five famous explorers of the Renaissance are i) Christopher Columbus, b) Vasco de Gama, c) John Cabot, d) Ferdinand Magellan and d) Sir Francis Drake.


i. Why do some people think of the Renaissance as the beginning of modern history?

Ans:- The Renaissance people brought revolution in art, architecture, literature, culture, navigation and science etc. which are foundation of the modern life and beliefs so Renaissace is thoght to be the beginning of modern history.


B. What do you infer from the reading? Tick (√) the best answer.

a. Before the Renaissance…

i. Middle-class people did a lot of reading.

ii. Educaiton was limited to scholars and previleged people. √

iii. People were eager to change their lives but couldn't

iv. People were eager to learn new things.


b. Which statement is true?

i. The Greeks had a strong influence on Renaissane thinking. √

ii. France wat the bithplace of the Renaissance.

iii. Turkish scholars spread their knowledge throughout Europe.

iv. German philosphers were responsible for starting the Renaissance.


c. What did the Renaissanec do?

i. It helped leaders maintain control over the middle class.

ii. It discouraged people to go against tradition beliefs.

iii. It caused people to make changes in their lives. √

iv. It influenced people to fight against each other.


d. What were the major cuses of the Renaissance?

i. changes in movement

ii. Exploration of new worlds,

iii. New artists and writers who created great works,

iv. Printing, reading and learning √


Critical thinking

a. Do you argree with Machiavelli's view that a good leader can do bad and dishonest things in order to preserve his power and protect his government? Explain.

Ans:- The most famous Renaissance thinker, politician, diplomat Niccolo Machiavelli in his book "The Prince" stated "A good leader could do bad and dishonest things in order to preserve his power and protect his government." I am quite sure to this statement. We read different news and histories about good leaders turning into devils. But there are also examples of bad leaders becoming good. In most of cases, when a good leader becomes the powerful person possessing all rights, he turns into bad. Political power and position is such a thing which any leader doesn't want to lose after getting. To maintain his position and exercise power, he wants to hold the position all the time violating political norms and values. They even ruin lives of people for the sake of their position. They forget their duties and mandate of people as soon as they chair the nation. Such leaders are surrounded and supported corrupted and cunning people encouraging the leader to become dictator. In democratic countries, such leaders win the hearts of people, get elected and gradually become bad.


b. Do you think that art and literature are important assets of a country? Give reasons.

Ans: Art and literature are important assets of a country. In the form of books, paintings, sculptures or statues, they record contemporary social values, traditions, culture, and way of life of people and so on. It is the mirror of the society. Such things help us to know about the way of life of people, their languages, cultures, traditions, religions, doctrines etc. of a particular era. Such things give identity to the people and their nations. If such things are not preserved our identity, culture, language, tradition are lost.



a. Write an essay on "Literature is the reflection of society."

Ans: "Literature is the reflection of society" is a well-known statement and it is also said "mirror of society". Any work of art or literature is product of that time. Literature indeed reflects the society, its good values and its ills. In its corrective function, literature mirrors the ills of the society with a view to making the society realize its mistakes and make amends. It also projects the virtues or good values in the society for people to emulate. Literature, as an imitation of human action, often presents a picture of what people think, say and do in the society. In literature, we find stories designed to portray human life and action through some characters who, by their words, action and reaction, convey certain messages for the purpose of education, information and entertainment. It is impossible to find a work of literature that excludes the attitudes, morale and values of the society, since no writer has been brought up completely unexposed to the world around him. What writers of literature do is to transport the real-life events in their society into fiction and present it to the society as a mirror with which people can look at themselves and make amends where necessary. Thus, literature is not only a reflection of the society but also serves as a corrective mirror in which members of the society can look at themselves and find the need for positive change. It is necessary to take a close look at some works of literature, in order to understand how literature actually reflects the society.


b. It is said that today's reader is tomorrow's leader. Do you agree with this statement? Explain.

Ans:- The great British writer and philosopher Francis Bacon said that reading makes a full man. It is the foundation of the intellectual development and brings changes in personal behavior. It is the process of storing knowledge in our mind. Every civilization focuses on reading of varieties of topics. Schools, colleges, and other academic institute use reading as a major tool in imparting education to students.


No matter, either formal or informal reading makes people great. To become a good leader one must cultivate knowledges. It is true a person who has the reading habit, never feels lonely and bored. The books open up a magical world for him or her and he lives among angels in the pages of the books. Books never let go the readers astray. They make them wise and pragmatic. We must endeavor to develop this fabulous habit of reading. 


Smart-phones, computers, social media, internet and networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter have become source of major distractions for students. Young boys and girls seem to have become inordinately addicted to these sites. They are thoughtlessly and uselessly wasting their precious time on these sites. The parents, teachers and the government must look into the problems being caused by these networking sites and must formulate a strategy either to curb or completely stop its fast growing negative influence on the minds of our youth.


In order to promote wholesome reading habits among the children and youth, the Government must set up libraries in all the cities, towns, and villages. If we can provide those smart-phones, computers, internet, and other digital facilities so easily, why not provide them books to develop their mind positively? One thing is absolutely clear, if we want our children to become great leaders in future, we must make them great readers in the present.


c. Write a short biography of a national literary, artistic or historical figure you appreciate the most.

Ans:- Laxmi Prasad Devkota was born in 1909 at Dillibazar, Kathmandu on the auspicious day of Laxmi Puja, the day when the goddess of wealth is worshipped in every household. His parents named him Laxmi Prasad. Although his name means the blessing of the goddess of wealth, he was poor all his life. Instead, he was blessed by goddess Saraswati (a deity of knowledge and learning). He became Mahakabi (The great poet) of Nepal and earned the love and respect of the people.


He was born in a middle class family. At the time he was born, Nepal was ruled by the Ranas who were against educating the common people. His family had to go through a lot of trouble to get him admitted at Durbar School, which was the only school in the whole of Kathmandu Valley. He got married at the age of fifteen, while still in school. He wrote his first poems at school. He was quiet and always a good student who loved reading and writing. It is said that he used to recite his poems in front of his class and his friends did not believe that he wrote them himself because they were very good. His teachers, however, were impressed by his talent. He finished school with good grades and went to Trichandra College in 1925 to study science. He got his B.A. in arts in 1929 and went to India in 1931 on a scholarship to continue his studies. He was impressed by the libraries he saw in India, and he and his friends wrote to the Rana Prime Minister asking for permission to open a library in Kathmandu. They were put in prison for this and had to pay heavy fines.


When he came back from India after finishing his studies, he had to work really hard to earn a living. His popular book Muna Madan was written during this time. All the poets of the time wrote using the old Sanskrit forms. Muna Madan was written in the jhyaure folklore style. This was completely new and it received recognition. It is still a best seller even after more than seven decades of its publication. Soon afterwards, he lost both his parents and an infant daughter within two years. This shattered Devkota completely. It was at this point that he wrote Pagal which is one of the best written poems in Nepali.


He had the command of Nepali, Sanskrit, Hindi, and English languages and he could write poetry very quickly. He wrote his first epic Shakuntala in three months. He wrote his other epic Sulochana in ten days and Kunjini in a single day. He was a versatile writer and wrote many essays, plays, stories, novels, criticism and innumerable poems along with the epics. His essays are much admired for their style and content. He took Nepali literature to new heights. He has influenced generations of Nepali writers and many have tried to emulate him. Devkota worked hard all his life. He became a professor at Trichandra College in 1946. Later, in 1957, he became Nepal’s Education Minister. He was also a very generous man. He gave all he had to anyone in need. One winter morning, he saw a beggar shivering in the street and gave him the coat he was wearing.


In 1958, he was diagnosed with cancer and he passed away in 1959 aged 50.

Although he is no more with us, his writing will always keep him alive in the hearts of the people who love Nepali literature.


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