Thursday, December 14

Leonardo da Vinci – An Inventive Genius

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Leonardo was massively important at that time, because of the great effect he had in the fields of engineering, science and quite possibly the most interesting area, as an inventor.  

Da Vinci came from the area of Vinci, a town in Tuscany, Italy, and was born 15 April 1452 his father was a lawyer. Whilst in Florence, he became an apprentice to the artist Andrea del Verrocchio and when he was approximately twenty six years of age he became an independent master in his own right.  

He went to Milan when he was roughly twenty eight years of age, where da Vinci worked for a ruling family named Sforza and worked there as an engineer, sculptor, painter and architect. When he was about forty six years of age he painted a mural of the “last supper” in the Monastery of Santa Maria delle Grazie, in Milan. 

In the mean time Da Vinci remained in Milan, but he had to leave when the French decided to invade in 1499 and the ruling family of Sforza had to leave also. He apparently went to Venice prior to returning to Florence. Whilst in Florence, da Vinci painted numerous portraits, however there is only one portrait that exists today and that is the world renowned “Mona Lisa” which he painted when he was approximately fifty three years of age.  

Da Vinci went back to Milan in 1506 where he stayed for about seven years, and he then went on to spend a few years in Rome. In 1517 King Francis 1 invited da Vince to stay at the Chateau of Cloux in France and he died 2 May 1519.

Because of da Vinci’s world famous paintings, he has acquired a reputation as being only an artist, but when reading his notebooks they do give the picture of what an all round genius he really was. He wrote and illustrated on many different topics for example geology, anatomy, flight, gravity and also optics. His writing style was a bit unusual, he wrote in a left handed mirror script. Some of his impressive inventions include the bicycle, the airplane, the helicopter and parachute.

Many people associate da Vinci with being brilliant in either science or as an artist but when you study him you then come to realize that he was brilliantly gifted in both. He used the influence of art in his science literature and also used his knowledge of science and the human form in his paintings.

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