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As the Renaissance spread throughout Europe, the standard of living among Europeans greatly improved. As this happened, more people could afford to have their children receive a formal education. With more people being able to read and write, the number of individuals who read the bible increased. Many began to criticize the Catholic Church for its extravagance and for its abuses.
There were many people who felt that the practices and teachings of the Church were not consistent with the teachings found in the scriptures. The result was what historians call the Protestant Reformation.