Leonardo Da Vinci

Leonardo da Vinci was born in 1452 in Vinci, Tuscany, during a time called the Renaissance. His creations of art and advancements in science not only surpassed those of his time, but have contributed to the fundamentals of modern day technology and are arguably the greatest in history. Many of da Vinci’s paintings remain today as proof of his pioneered techniques, brilliance, and talent. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language defines “renaissance man” as “a man who has broad intellectual interests and is accomplished in areas of both the arts and the sciences.” This is a term still used today, and its derivation is obvious. Many people in the Fourteenth to Sixteenth Centuries were skillful artists and scientists, but Leonardo da Vinci was the quintessential Renaissance man.
The Renaissance was a time of economic stability. Originating in Italy and eventually expanding to other parts of Europe such as Germany, France, and England, the Renaissance was an era of renewed interest in literature and art and emphasized autonomous thought and creations. The philosophy of humanism, an idea stressing the importance and distinction of individuals, is thought to have originated during this time (“Renaissance” Encarta). Italian writers struggled to discover and preserve earlier works by Romans and Greeks.
There was one main cause for the Renaissance and the economical boom; a population increase. The Crusades caused a spark in trade due to interactions with other cultures. Trade routes were established and eventually became crowded. Therefore, existing towns grew into cities, and new ones were conceived. As towns grew and became crowded, there arose a need for expansion. People traveled more and interacted with other cities and cultures, which was forbidden under the feudal system. This interaction and constant traveling, along with military encounters, increased trade even more. The feudal system began to break down.
The exports brought money, and Italian rulers and nobles, as well as the governments of cities, became wealthier because of the merchants: “These merchants exerted both political and economic leadership and their attitudes and interest helped to shape the Italian Renaissance” (“Renaissance” World History 345). They also donated generously in support of the arts. Soon, cities became commercial centers and banks were established. The increased funds of cities were used for cultural endeavors, partially because the competing city-states of Italy wanted their strength and power to be acknowledged. Italian inventors and artists realized that this was ” a new age, free from the darkness and ignorance characterized by the preceding era”(“Renaissance” Encarta).

There were three distinct periods of the Renaissance, each identified by the works of different individuals. In order to comprehend the extraordinary greatness of Leonardo da Vinci, it is also important to become familiar with the achievements of his predecessors and colleagues. The early Renaissance introduced a new style of painting. Masaccio, born in 1401, was the first great painter of the Italian Renaissance, and his use of perspective and natural lighting portrayed an important step in the development of modern painting: “In his life, he made several important innovations in the art of painting. His treatment of space and light influenced generations of Italian artists, earning him the title Founder of the Renaissance'” (Who and When? 24).

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According to John R. Hale, Bencivieni di Pepo was an Italian painter and mosaic craftsman from Florence. He was one of the most important artists of his time, breaking with the formalism of Byzantine art, then predominant in Italy, and introducing a more lifelike treatment of traditional subjects. His style preceded the realistic Florentine school of the early Renaissance founded by Giotto, and he is believed to have been Giotto’s teacher. Among di Pepo’s works are Crucifix and Madonna and Child. He also made a mosaic of Saint John and painted fresco cycles of saints, apostles, and scenes from the Apocalypse in the churches of San Francesco (Hale 161).

James Snyder states that Paolo Uccello was one of the most innovative artists of the early Renaissance. He dedicated his life to art and neglected his friends and family. Uccello worked obsessively to represent depth, distance, and three dimensions on paper. In 1425 he traveled to Venice to design mosaics for Saint Mark’s Cathedral. After his return to Florence, he painted a fresco of English mercenary Sir John Hawkwood for the city’s cathedral. He also executed a series of stained-glass windows for the cathedral, one of which is still in place (Snyder 53-54).

Piero della Francesca was also an Italian painter whose style was one of the most individual of the early Renaissance. Piero was born in Borgo San Sepolcro, a small city in southern Tuscany, around 1420. He studied art in Florence, but his career was spent in other cities. His solid, rounded figures are derived from Masaccio and added an innate sense of order and clarity. He studied solid geometry and perspective, and his works reflect these interests. The outlines of his subjects have the grace, abstraction, and precision of geometric drawings (“Francesca” Bookshelf).
Other artists of the early Renaissance include Andrea Mantegna, Giotto di Bondone, Domenico Veneziano, Giovanni Bellini, and Giorgione. All of these talented people rose to become leading painters of their day. Their realistic and dramatic religious paintings set new standards in Western art and provided an inspiration for later artists (“Renaissance” Bookshelf).

The influence of the Italian Renaissance affected northern Europe at the beginning of the Fifteenth Century, called the Northern Renaissance. This renewal of cultural activity was marked by an acute interest in human beings and by the use of natural detail in paintings. An interest in ancient art and a knowledge of linear perspective did not develop in the north until the Sixteenth Century; and even then, not all artists used the discoveries that were made in Italy.
Another statement from James Snyder is that one of the most important of Fifteenth Century Netherlandish painters was Jan van Eyck, who painted the remarkable Ghent Altarpiece. It contains hundreds of figures, as well as a variety of vegetation so carefully rendered that more than thirty plant species can be identified. Other outstanding artists of the period were Rogier van der Weyden, who focused on emotional drama in his religious paintings; Hans Memling, who created delicate, graceful figures against ethereal backgrounds; and Hugo van der Goes, who painted a superb altarpiece with a wealth of precise details for the Italian Portinari family. Characteristic of all these artists was the use of symbols, or iconography (57).

Three other artists from this period, as described by the book Who and When? The Renaissance: Artists and Writers, are Pieter Brueghel, Albrecht Durer, and Hieronymus Bosch. Brueghal is famous for his lively, colorful, and humorous paintings of ordinary people going about their everyday lives. While they seem light-hearted, the works contain serious moral messages (74). Durer was one of the most important figures of the Northern Renaissance because he brought Italian achievements in art to Germany. His detailed prints established his reputation throughout Europe (52). Bosch created disturbing paintings. As a Netherlandish artist, he sent out a strong moral message by using a mixture of horribly vivid images and highly realistic details (40).

The High Renaissance was the peak of the Renaissance in the Sixteenth Century. Raphael and Michelangelo are most frequently associated with this period, as is da Vinci. All were in competition, and arguably, any one of the three could be declared the greatest artist of the era. Raphael perfected earlier Renaissance discoveries in matters of color and composition. He created ideal representations of the Virgin and Child. The Vatican’s Sistine Chapel in Rome, with its ceiling frescoes of the Creation, the Fall, and the vast wall fresco of the Last Judgment, attest to Michelangelo’s genius as a painter (“Renaissance” Encarta).
Leonardo da Vinci could be considered the epitome of the Renaissance because of the diversity of his intellectual and artistic accomplishments. One source describes him in the following way: “Perhaps the most versatile genius who ever lived, Leonardo reached the heights of human achievement. Not only one of the greatest painters of the Renaissance, he was also a talented scientist, designer, and musician” (Who and When 46). He was born April 5th, 1452, near Vinci, the illegitimate son of Piero di Antonio, a notary, and his companion Caterena. Richard A. Turner conveys that because his father was literate, it is assumed that Leonardo had a good elementary education despite the fact that no information or evidence exists (12). During his early life, he abhorred formal education and preferred learning through direct experience. He called himself “omo sanza lettre,” a man without letters (12). At age fifteen, da Vinci was an apprentice to Andrea del Verrochio, an artist, in 1467. Verrochio’s workshops were the most prestigious in Florence. During this time, little is known of da Vinci’s work. In 1473, his first recorded landscape drawing was created and 1478 was the first year that Leonardo showed a substantial reputation. He was paid to do an altar painting for the chapel at Saint Bernard (13-19). Another initial sign of interest for Leonardo was a drawing of a silver point warrior in 1478, suggesting his fascination with machinery and war. He contributed a famous angel to one of Verrochio’s paintings, which was his first famous creation. Some paintings done in Verrochio’s workshop include the Annunciation, Genivra Benci, and the Madonna with a Carnation (Inventing Leonardo 12-19).
In 1472, Leonardo became a member of the painter’s guild of Florence (Museum on the Web). One of his most popular works, The Adoration of the Magi was painted in 1481 for the monastery of San Donato a Scopeto. It was left unfinished because he went to Milan. The unfinished painting is the most important of all the early paintings. In it, Leonardo displays, for the first time, his method of organizing figures into a pyramid shape, so that interest is focused on the principal subject. This is one technique pioneered by Leonardo. Once in Milan, Da Vinci was asked to paint Madonna of the Rocks. This exists in two identical versions. One in the Louvre in France and the other in London. The figures in the picture are again grouped in a pyramid. Another accomplishment was the great Last Supper made for the Ducal church of Santa Maria delle Grazie. Unfortunately, Da Vinci experimented with a new fresco technique, which started to show signs of decay as early as 1517. His innovation was a failure, and repeated attempts at restoration were unsuccessful. However, this signifies his inventive nature and yearning for creativity, which are characteristics of the Renaissance.
He started work on the ferocious Battle of Anghiari in Florence on June 6, 1505, facing a fresco by Michelangelo, his younger rival. Once again, he attempted to use a new technique. The mural deteriorated while he was working on it, and so he was forced to abandon the project. While in Florence, he painted classic masterpieces such as the Mona Lisa.
Afterward, he devoted his time to scientific studies and engineering projects such as the channeling of the course of the Adda River. His observations and experiments into the workings of nature include the stratification of rocks, the flow of water, the growth of plants, and the action of light. The mechanical devices that he sketched and described were also concerned with the transmission of energy. Leonardo’s solitary investigations took him from surface to structure, from catching the exact appearance of things in nature to visually analyzing how they function. Though once believed so, da Vinci’s art and science are not separate. They belong to the same lifelong pursuit of knowledge. His paintings, drawings, and manuscripts show that he was the foremost creative mind of his time (Museum on the Web).

Two works, the Benois Madonna and the unfinished St. Jerome show two hallmarks of Leonardo’s mature style, contraposto, or twisting movements, and chiaroscuro, or modeling in light and shade. Irma A. Richter perfectly describes da Vinci and his style:
It was not only the beauty of nature but also the spirit at work beneath the world of appearance that fascinated him. Combining an artist’s sensitivity with a scientist’s desire for knowledge, he analyzed the objects of vision and the way in which vision functioned. This entailed the study of nature, its structure and life. As he proceeded, his interest in natural science deepened. He used scientific methods of research in order to ascertain nature’s laws and introduce them in his own work. He pursued these studiesfor the attainment of creative power. His compositions expressed actions, emotions; faces were molded by the life within. He was a precursor of a new age in science and a civil and military engineer who used the basic ideas of modern machinery (v).

Leonardo’s obsession with knowledge led him to studies and hypotheses in literally hundreds of areas of science and art. There was practically no limit to his famous range of contemplation, as evidenced in his notebooks. Covered in sketches of flowers, clouds, and birds, they contained designs for flying and military machinery, fortifications, waterways, and dozens of other useful originally engineered inventions. He predated Sir Isaac Newton in such physics dissertations as “What is Impetus” and “Of Movement and Percussion.” Impetus (which Newton explained in his physical laws of inertia), Leonardo explained, “under another name is called derived movement which arises out of primary movement, that is to say when the movable thing is joined to its mover” (Notebooks 74).
In his notes on applied mechanics, da Vinci covered such topics as friction, gearing, weighing instruments, and the science of wheels and weight, which included pulleys (84). Aside from the Mona Lisa and other masterpieces, what Leonardo is probably most recognized for today is his incredible collection of notes and sketches dealing with flight. He based his flight hypotheses on that of the birds movement and of this he wrote the following:
To speak of this subject, you must in the first book explain the nature of the resistance of the air, in the second the anatomy of the bird and its wings, in the third the method of working the wings in their various movements, in the fourth the power of the wings and of the tail when the wings are not being moved and when the wind is favorable to serve as guide in various movements (89).

Obviously, the breadth and scope of this mans abilities were so vast that one could go on almost indefinitely proving the aforementioned thesis. Other artists, inventors, scientists, and writers existed during this time and contributed to mankind as well as throughout history. However, none have received the overwhelming critical accolades that da Vinci has. For example, Algernon Charles Swinburne wrote in 1869 of da Vinci’s paintings the following:
Of Leonardo, the examples are choice and few; full of that indefinable grace and grave mystery which belonged to his slightest and wildest world. Fair strange faces of women full of dim doubt and faint scorn; touched by the shadows of an obscure fate; eager and weary as it seems at once, pale and fervent with patience and passion; allure and perplex the eyes and thoughts of men (118).

Leonardo da Vinci was born in 1452 and died in 1519. He was a Florentine artist and one of the great masters of the Renaissance. Revered as a painter, sculptor, architect, engineer, and scientist, his profound love of knowledge and research was the essence of both his artistic and scientific endeavors. His innovations in the field of painting influenced the course of art in Western civilization, and his scientific studies in the fields of anatomy, optics, and hydraulics were the basis for many of the developments of modern science. The variety of his interests and the depth of his brilliance made him the quintessential Renaissance man.

Works Cited
“Early Renaissance” Microsoft Bookshelf ’95. CD-ROM. Microsoft Corp. 1995.

Hale, John R. Renaissance. New York: Time Inc., 1965.

“Leonardo da Vinci.” Da Vinci Museum on the Web. Online. Internet. February 28, 2000. Available: http://www.davinci-museum.com/davinengl1.htm
“Leonardo da Vinci.” Microsoft Encarta ’99. CD-ROM. Microsoft Corp. 1998.

“Piero della Francesca” Microsoft Bookshelf ’95. CD-ROM. Microsoft Corp. 1995.

“The Renaissance.” Who and When? The Renaissance: Artists and Writers. 1998.

“The Renaissance in Italy.” World History: Connections to Today. 1999.

Richter, Irma A. The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1952.

Snyder, James. Northern Renaissance Art: Painting, Sculpture, the Graphic Arts from 1350 to 1575. Phoenix: Prentice-Hall, 1985.

Turner, A. Richard. Inventing Leonardo. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1993.

Leonardo Da Vinci

Leonardo Da Vinci Leonardo Da Vinci was born in 1452 on his fathers estate in Vinci, Italy. He received his education on the estate until the age of fifteen. Which is when his father had noticed Leonardos potential and had decided to send him to be an apprentice to the artist Andrea del Verrocchio in Florence. There he studied sculpture and the mechanical arts. This was also when he first developed an interest in anatomy.

In 1472 Leonardo was accepted into the painters’ guild at Florence, where he remained for the next ten years. In 1482, Leonardo was hired by the duke of Milan, Ludovico Sforza, to be artist and engineer in residence. During his stay in Milan, he started to compose a unified theory of the world and to illustrate it in a series of voluminous notebooks. Unfortunately due to his pursuit of scientific knowledge he had to leave many of his artistic creations unfinished. He stayed in Milan for seventeen years. There he completed six paintings: two portraits of the ‘Last Supper’, two versions of ‘The Virgin of the Rocks’, and a decorative ceiling painting in the Castello Sforzesco.

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Other paintings were either unfinished or have disappeared. In the early 1500s, Leonardo returned to his home city. In Florence, he was commissioned to do a number of paintings, but other interests and tasks kept him from finishing them. The most well known piece to survive from this time period was the famous Mona Lisa, which is now in the Louvre in Paris. For ten months during 1502, Leonardo served as military adviser and engineer. During the years 1513 to 1516, Leonardo was in Rome at the invitation of Cardinal Giuliano de’ Medici, brother of Pope Leo X.

Some of the greatest artists of the time were at work in Rome for the church. In May 1506 Charles d’Amboise, governor of Milan for the king of France, invited Leonardo to return to that city. His work in painting and sculpture over the next seven years remained mostly in the planning stage–in sketches that he drew but that never became paintings or statues–but his scientific work flourished. He continued his notebooks with observations and drawings of human anatomy, optics, mechanics, and botanical studies. He also did some sketches for a Medici residence in Florence that was never built. Otherwise he was lonely and unoccupied.

Thus in 1516, at the age of 65, he accepted an invitation from Francis I, king of France, to leave Italy and work for him. Leonardo spent the last three years of his life in the palace of Cloux, near the king’s residence at Amboise, near Tours. He was given the title of first painter, architect, and mechanic of the King and given freedom of action in what he wanted to do. Although there are many great works of Leonardo Da Vinci that I could have chosen, I am going to choose the most obvious, the Mona Lisa. I chose this piece because the impact it had on the world.

No matter where you go in the world, everyone knows of the Mona Lisa. The picture is on stamps; shirts; posters; cup; and just about anything else you can think of. It one of the most well renowned paintings in the world. Another reason I chose this piece is because of the mystery of the painting. To this day no one knows whether the woman in the painting was a real person, or whether is was Leonardos vision of himself as a women. Another fact which makes it even more peculiar is that Leonardo always kept a log of the models which he had used, yet there is no record of who modeled for the Mona Lisa. Leonardo Da Vinci had a very strong influence over the world, artistically as well as scientifically. Leonardo devised plans for prototypes of an airplane and a helicopter.

His extensive studies of human anatomy were portrayed in anatomical drawings, were among the most significant achievements of Renaissance Science. His remarkable illustrations of the human body elevated drawing into a means of scientific investigation and exposition and provided the basic principles for modern scientific illustration. He continued his notebooks with observations and drawings of human anatomy, optics, mechanics, and botanical studies. Due to Leonardos remarkable illustrations, European artists began to study the model of nature more closely and to paint with the goal of great realism. They learned to create lifelike people and animals, and they became skilled at creating the illusion of depth and distance on flat walls and canvases by using the techniques of linear perspective.

Leonardo also was the first to make careful measurements and suggest rules for applying them realistically in painting. He called the subject aerial perspective. He is deservedly considered one of the greatest painters of all time. He excelled in inventiveness, technique, drawing ability, use of light, shadow, and color. Arts and Painting.

Leonardo Da Vinci

“Leonardo da Vinci…oh yeah, that is the guy who painted the Mona Lisa!”
That was all I knew about Leonardo da Vinci before I started this report. I
knew that he lived during the Renaissance and that he was a very important
man, but that is about it. There is so much more about Leonardo that he is
known for, other than him being the painter of the famous Mona Lisa. Leonardo
was a universal genius, (as said in “What Makes a Leonardo a Leonardo?” By:
Richard Mhlberger, Copyright: 1994) because he excelled in numerous areas of
knowledge and contributed so much to the Renaissance. He was one of the great
masters of the High Renaissance (as said in the following website:
http://metalab.unc.edu/cgfa/vinci/vinci_bio.htm) who was a painter, sculptor,
architect, engineer, mathematician, geologist, astronomer and scientist.

Birthplace and Childhood: Leonardo da Vinci was born at 10:30 PM on
Saturday, April 15th, 1452. He was born in the small Tuscan town of Vinci,
which is near Florence. Although, in another reference, it said that he was
probably born in a farm house in Anchiano, which is about three miles away
from Vinci. The family of Leonardo lived in this area since the 13th century.

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When Leonardo was born, Ser Piero, his father, was a twenty-five year old
public notary. Also, when Leonardo was born, Ser Piero married his wife. He
didn’t marry Catarina, his mother, because she probably the daughter of a
farmer.
Leonardo was christened from the parson Peiro da Bartolomeo, in the
Baptismal Chapel. He was baptized to the name Lionardo, not Leonardo. The
chapel is inside the church of Vinci.

According to a tax record, when Leonardo was five years old, he was
living with his grandparents. Francesco, his uncle, probably taught him about
nature though the wild countryside that surrounds Vinci. When Francesco died,
about fifty years later, he willed his estate to Leonardo, which showed a
sense of fondness to Leonardo.

Apprenticeship: Leonardo lived in Vinci until 1466. Vinci is a small
town, in the foot of Monte Albano, in the Tuscany in Italy. When he was
fourteen, he moved to Florence, where he bagan an apprenticeship in the
workshop of Andrea del Verrocchio. Verrocchio was the leading Florentine
painter and sculptor of his day. The apprenticeship program provided all
artistic training. He was introduced to many things like painting
alterpieces, panel pictures and the creation of large sculptural projects in
marble and bronze. Leonardo served Verrocchio for about thirteen years. While
in the artists workshop he went to being a journeyman and then to being
master craftsman. When he became a master craftsman, he was expected to copy
Verrocchio’s work to perfection beacuse everything made in the shop was sold
under Verrocchio’s name. After seeing how Verrocchio’s knowledge of several
subjects helped him, Leonardo saw that mastering many skills was one of the
goals of an artist. He saw that science and art were closely related to each
other and became a master for both. Verrocchio and Leonardo, then
collaborated on the painting “The Baptism of Christ” in about the year of
1472.
The first known and dated work of Leonardo da Vinci is a pen and ink
drawing of the Aronovalley. Leonardo drew it on August 5th, 1473. It shows
the ingenious mind of Leonardo because he drew the landscape in a way that it
look real, unlike anyone else’s work produced before.

Years in Milan: Between 1482 and 1499, Leonardo was in the service of the
Duke of Milan. He was described in a list of the Dukes staff as a painter and
engineer of the duke. Leonardo completed six paintings during this time in
the dukes service. He also advised on architecture, fortifications and
military matters. Plus, he was considered as a hydraulic and mechanical
engineer.
During the year of 1495, Leonardo began working on one of his most famous
masterpieces, the Last Supper. This painting is an illustration of Leonardo’s
unique style. He broke with tradition by arranging the figures of the
apostles into small groups with Jesus seated in the center of the scene.
Leonardo’s portrayal of the Last Supper is alive with momentum and
interaction between the characters. The people of his time had never seen a
more vivid representation of this major even. This goes for people of our
generation too.

In 1499, Leonardo left Milan and went to Venice. In Venice, he consulted
on architecture from 1495 to 1499. In 1502 and 1503, Leonardo was the
military engineer for Cesare Borgia. After his service to the Borgias, he
returned to Florence. During the years of 1503 to 1506, Leonardo parinted
classics such as the Mona Lisa.
In 1506, Leonardo left to Florence and went to Milan. He then went back
to Florence around 1507-08, to fight for his inheritance from his Uncle. In
1509, he returned to Milan and spent a lot of his time on scientific studies
and engineering projects. In 1512, again Leonardo left Milan. From 1513 to
1516, Leonardo was in Rome under the protection of Giuliano de Medici. It was
at this time that he came in contact with Michelangelo and Raphael, two to
become his biggest rivals.

1516 through 1519: King Francis I, invited Leonardo to spend his last
times of his life in Amborise at the court of France In the autumn of 1516,
Leonardo arrived in the ambroise, with him, he brought the famous painting of
the Mona Lisa.

Leonardo lived in Ambroise, in the small castle Cloux (now called Le Clos
Luce), which is situated between the town and the king castle. While in
France, Leonardo didn’t paint, instead he made hydrological studies. In 1517,
He designed a palace in Romorantin.

Leonardo’s Death: Leonardo passed away on May 2nd, 1519, in Ambroise.
Leonardo da Vinci died at the age of 67. He wasn’t at the healthiest state,
because he had a paralysis on the right side of his body since 1517, and
Vasari told about an illness a few weeks before Leonardo dies. On April 23rd,
1519, Leonardo wrote his last will. St. Hubert, which is a chapel that is
situated at the area of the king-castle, is the last resting place of
Leonardo da Vinci. Originally, Leonardo was buried in the heart of the
king-castle, in the cloister of the church, St. Florentin. But, after
destruction of the church, and parts of the castle, Leonardo’s mortal remains
were transferred to the chapel of St. Hubert.
But to this day, Leonardo da Vinci remains to be on the of the greatest
people to ever have shadowed this earth. He was a great man of both the arts
and sciences. He was indeed a man of “both” worlds. He was a master in both,
world of art and the world of sciences. As I said earlier, Leonardo was an
architect, an inventor and a scientist. That is what makes him the most
likely, most famous man of the Renaissance.

Mona LisaToday: The portrait of the Mona Lisa is painted on a 77 x 53
cm. large popular-wood. As you know, it is the most famous work of Leonardo
da Vinci. Originally, the painting was larger than it is today because two
columns (one on the left and the other on the right) have been cut along the
sides of the painting. This is the reason of why its not easy to see that
Mona Lisa is sitting on a terrace. Many details of the painting aren’t
visible because they are partially damaged and some parts of the Mona Lisa
were repainted. The characteristic still exists. The characteristic consists
in the detailed background, which disappears in misty atmosphere (also
referred to as a sfumato technique) and her smile.

Mona LisaHistory: It is supposed that Fracesco di Bartolommeo di Zanobi
del Giocondo (one of the most noble citizens in France at the time) ordered,
from Leonardo, a portrait of his 3rd wife, Lisa di Antonio Maria di Noldo
Gherardini.Leonardo began this painting in 1503. Mona Lisa was twenty four
years old. He worked on this portrait for four years. Leonardo kept the
portrait and left to Florence in 1507. It is unknown why he kept itsome say
it was because he never finished it and others say it was because he loved
the portrait too much. In 1516, Leonardo arrived with the painting in his
luggage in France. He sold the painting in France to King Francis I, who
bought it for the castle in Ambroise. On August 21st, 1911, Mona Lisa was
stolen from an Italian thief, who brought the painting to Italy, where it
emerged two years later in Florence. After some exhibitions, the Mona Lisa
went back to Paris. An acid attempt damaged the lower half of the painting in
1956. Fixing it took a lot of years. In the 60’s and 70’s Mona Lisa was
exposed in New York, Tokyo and Moscow. Today, the painting is behind bullet
proof glass, in Paris , in the Louvve and international terms are prohibiting
any journey.

Inventions: When we think of Leonardo da Vinci we think of a famous
painter but he was also a famous inventor. To design machines, he would make
very detailed sketches of all the working parts. Leonardo had many ideas on
how to improve military weaponry. The catapult was a large device designed to
hurl boulders and arrows to shoot into walled cites. The multi-fire gun was
designed to shoot many bullets at once. This design was an early machine gun
type cannon. Leonardo used his philosophy to improve his mechanical abilities
and many machines of his day.

His Notebook: The notebook of Leonardo is now known as the Codex Arundel.
This notebook isn’t a bound volume used by Leonardo, but it was put together
after he died. It consists of loose papers of various types and sizes. The
first section began in Florence on March22nd, 1508 and the remainder comes
from different periods in different manuscripts. Most of these notes are the
raw materials for a book that Leonardo hoped to write on the physical
properties and geographical effects of water. Theyare written in Italian and
in Leonardo’s characteristic ‘mirror-writing’, left handed and moving from
right to left. This manuscript was in Thomas Howard, Earl of Arundel’s hands,
in Italy. He was the greatest English collector of art of his day. In 1681,
it was presented to the Royal Society by Henry Howard (his grandson) and
transferred to the British Museum in 1831.

Leonardo’s Quote: “And you, O man, who all will discern in this work of
mine the marvellous works of nature, if you think it would be a criminal
thing to destroy it, reflect how much more criminal it is to take the life of
a man; and if this is, his external form, appears to thee marvelously
constructed, remember that this structure; for that, indeed, be it may, is a
Devine thing. Leave it then to dwell in its work at its good pleasure, and
let not your rage or malice destroy a lifefor indeed, he who does not value
it, does not himself deserve it.”
“Iron rusts from disuse; stagnant water loses its purity and in cold
weather becomes frozen; even so does inaction sap the vigour of the mind.”
“Man is the model of the world.”
“Science is the captain, practice the soldier.”
“Painters who wish to represent the relief of things they paint must
cover the service with a half-tint, then paint in the darkest shadows and
lastly the main lights.”
“He who wishes to see how the soul inhabits the body should look to see
how that body uses its daily surroundings. If the dwelling is dirty and
neglected, the body will be kept by its soul in the same condition, dirty and
neglected.”
“Nothing flows faster than the years, daughters of time.”
“When fortune comes, seize her firmly by the forelock, for, I tell you,
she is bald at the back.”
“Avoid excessive study; it will give rise to a work destined to die with
the workman.”Words
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