The period in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, that was characterized by a renewed interest in ancient Greek and Roman art, philosophy, and science. Renaissance began in italy and spread over other european countries. It prefered motives from greek and roman mythology. Taking great interest in natural sciences and the individual human being, renaissance painters began to protray human beings and their environment in a more realistic manner. The portait became one of the typical forms of renaissance art.
Genre paintings in the closer sense depict everyday scenes of rural, bourgeois or courtly life. Here the term Genre is extended to all areas of human life. The early Genre paintings represent their motifs realistically, however oftentimes the image contents are to be understood as allegories, sometimes even as moralising artworks either praising idylls or denouncing human misconduct. Later in the 19th century the realistic component was brought again to the fore.