Since Medieval era, works of art were predominantly religious in nature this was mainly so because the church then was in position and had the capacity to sponsor the artistes therefore impacting on the nature of the produced music. This is again justified by the knowledge that no particular work of art is self existing in a vacuum, it is always a product of the time and place of production, this are the determinants of the nature of art. However, the religious nature of works of art was not to be so for long, the renaissance period saw the bath of a different nature which was more secular as the courts and influential institutions took up the sponsoring of production. Here is a brief period from the Baroque to the 20th century style of music.
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From 1643 to early 1700s, France was under the rule of King Louis XIV who was dubbed ‘Sun King’. The progressive nature of his rule was seen to be at odds with the opulent and extravagant tone of the court. Then Italy and Germany were not unified countries with central system of governance and in England, Oliver Cromwell who rose to power helped check the supremacy of the monarch and increased its influence abroad. In 1611 the King James Bible version was published in England, later on England saw the rise of many different Christian sects, this might be what caused the three-decade war between the Protestants and the Catholics from 1618-1648. The Geographical battlefront was mainly Holy Roman Empire (Germany) with many European countries participating. There was still great influence from the Catholic Church especially in Italy which saw the persecution of Galileo Galilei after his scientific discoveries.
From 1750, there was emergence of the rationalist philosophical tenets; they were at odds with the resurgence in the Great Awakening. While the writers then such as Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Immanuel Kant and Voltaire emphasized the capability of the human being to achieve good and a just world, the Christians were struggling to instill the good relationship between people and God both in Europe and America. This was the era when the British monarch was reinstated with reigns of King George II-IV; there also came misunderstandings which stemmed from taxation. They led to the successful 1776 American Revolution which later yields their independence, the same unrest was experienced in France but was rather worse and led to the fall of the monarchial system of governance replaced by the republican governance.
Self-crowned Emperor Napoleon who now led France after staging a successful coup while in his position as army General engaged in a series of military campaign, his main aim was to bring Europe under his control; this was boosted by his defeat over the Austro-Russian troops in 1805 which saw the fall of the Holy Roman Empire. The Emperor Napoleon French army was defeated in 1813 and he was forced into exile. Due extensive disruption caused by the Napoleonic Wars, there was dire need to convene a Congress attended by leading European powers; one of the major achievements was the merging of the numerous components of the Holy Roman Empire into the German Confederation.