In recent scientific and philosophical discussions the concept of Enlightenment has been often reconsidered. This reconsideration takes place in an era of a “universal apologizing” of all to everybody and for everything. In this atmosphere the meaning of the historical eras, such as Renaissance or Humanism is often forgotten. However, a rational reconstruction of these events is important in order to understand the present era. The original Enlightenment idea of progress dismissed the old orders for their not being able to keep pace with knowing. Not even today the skepticism against rationality can be the solution. Seen from this point of view the situation today is different. The paper tries to show its specific character.