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Baroque (pronounced /bəˈroʊk/ bə-rohk in American English or /bəˈrɒk/ in British English) is an artistic style prevalent from the late 16th century to the early 18th century in Europe.[1] It is most often defined as "the dominant style of art in Europe between the Mannerist and Rococo eras, a style characterized by dynamic movement, overt emotion and self-confident rhetoric".[2]

The popularity and success of the Baroque style was encouraged by the Roman Catholic Church, which had decided at the time of the Council of Trent, in response to the Protestant Reformation, that the arts should communicate religious themes in direct and emotional involvement.[3] The aristocracy also saw the dramatic style of Baroque architecture and art as a means of impressing visitors and expressing triumphant power and control. Baroque palaces are built around an entrance of courts, grand staircases and reception rooms of sequentially increasing opulence.


Evolution of the Baroque

Beginning around the year 1600, the demands for new art resulted in what is now known as the Baroque. The canon promulgated at the Council of Trent (1545–63) with which the Roman Catholic Church addressed the representational arts, rooted in the Protestant Reformation,[citation needed] by demanding that paintings and sculptures in church contexts should speak to the illiterate rather than to the well-informed, is customarily offered[weasel words] as an inspiration of the Baroque, which appeared, however, a generation later.

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