nature , "essential qualities, innate disposition," also "creative power in the material world," from . nature, from L. natura "course of things, natural character, the universe," lit. "birth," from natus "born," pp. of nasci "to be born," from PIE *gene- "to give birth, beget" (see genus). Original sense is in human nature. Meaning "inherent, dominating power or impulse" of a person or thing is from . Contrasted with art since 1704. Nature and nurture have been contrasted since should be avoided in such vague expressions as 'a lover of nature,' 'poems about nature.' ... Unless more specific statements follow, the reader cannot tell whether the poems have to do with natural scenery, rural life, the sunset, the untouched wilderness, or the habits of squirrels." [Strunk & White, "The Elements of Style," 3rd ed., 1979]Naturist "participant in the movement for communal nudity" is from 1929.
Just how life at Toledo developed in El Greco these new capacities for emotion and this new pictorial language we may only guess. One may imagine that the mere loneliness of a proud, irritable, pleasure-loving alien would have exaggerated a natural introversion. It is not a happy painter who needed to hire musicians to play during his meals. Perhaps the move from the most compromising people in the world to the most uncompromising may have fostered the intransigent mood with which El Greco was born. In Italy the desire for grandeur and decorum set limits to expression in all the arts. Not so in Spain, where a humanistic moderation in expression would have seemed absurdly and gratuitously insincere, and where nerves were ever braced to welcome any attack the artist might make upon them. Into this absolutism of the emotions El Greco readily fell, with the result that he became more Spanish than any of his painter contemporaries in Spain.