chapter  2
34 Pages

Medical Botany at the Re-founded University of Pisa

In the debate about intellectual innovation, Renaissance universities have traditionally been seen as the sites where knowledge was transmitted but not initiated. Universities, it was maintained, were traditional, if not retrograde institutions impermeable to change, where novel ideas were constantly held back. is general view has been partially challenged, and some exceptions acknowledged. As Charles Schmitt points out, there were cases in which ‘perhaps both the intellectual level and the receptivity to new ideas found in the Renaissance university tradition was more progressive than is oen admitted’.1