"The Lady with an Ermine" - National Museum, Kraków
"Virgin of the Rocks" (det.) - Musée du Louvre Paris
LEONARDO - ARTIST
1452 Leonardo was born on April 15 in a house in Anchiano, near Vinci. He was the first male child of Ser Piero Antonio, a Florentine notary, (who later had nine other sons and two females) and Caterina.
1469 Leonardo's father shows some drawings of his son to the artist Andrea Del Verrocchio. Leonardo began the apprenticeship in the Verrocchio atelier. He learns the artistic techniques of painting, sculpture and the principles of mechanics and engineering.
1470-1481 During these years he collaborates with Verrocchio at the Baptism of Christ, portrays Ginevra de’ Benci, paints the Annunciation, begins the Adoration of the Magi.
1472 On this date, Leonardo was registered in the Guild of Santa Lucia, but remained with Verrocchio at least until 1476.
1482 Lorenzo de’Medici, known as the Magnificent, lord of Florence, sends Leonardo to Milan to spread Florentine art and culture in Italy. He was accepted at the court of Ludovico il Moro: here he exhibited his skills as an engineer, painter and architect.
1482-1498 Far from Florence, Leonardo began the Milanese period during which he paints the Virgin of the Rocks and studies architectural solutions for the castles of Milan and Pavia
1494 Leonardo frescoes the refectory of Santa Maria delle Grazie in Milan with the Last Supper.
1499-1501 The French army invades Milan and Leonardo begins to travel between the cities of Italy. During these years he is in Mantua and Venice, where he is called to design canalizations of the Brenta river to make it navigable.
1501 He returns to Florence to find the Medici family, but while he was absent, the Medici had been driven out of Florence and the Republic had been proclaimed. The greatest artist in Florence was considered Michelangelo.
1502 Duke Cesare Borgia, known as Valentino, hired Leonardo as an architect and military engineer. Valentino, son of Pope Alexander VI, was one of the fiercest tyrants of the moment (inspired by the Prince of Machiavelli) and occupied Leonardo in engineering work for the continuous military campaigns he undertook. He will travel throughout Italy (thanks to a letter issued by Valentino in person with which he can go to every papal domain), curiously carrying the portrait of the Mona Lisa.
1503 The Florentine Republic instructs Leonardo to decorate the Salone dei Cinquecento in Palazzo Vecchio together with Michelangelo. He chooses to fresco the Battle of Anghiari, which today is covered by Vasari's frescoes from 1563.
1507 He returns to Milan, at the request of the French marshal Charles d'Amboise, where he remains until 1513 and is appointed "painter and engineer of the king of France". In fact, in this historical period Milan is under French rule.
1513-1514 Accept the invitation to go to Rome in the service of Giuliano de Medici. He works for the reclamation of the Pontine Marshes, studies fossils, and still devotes himself to mechanics and engineering.
1516 Giuliano de'Medici, his last protector and patron, dies. Leonardo accepted the invitation of Francis I, the new king of France, to join his court
1517 Leonardo is in Amboise, in the Château de Cloux, with the role of the first painter, engineer and architect of the King.
1519 Leonardo died on 2 May at the age of 67 in Amboise in France. The will that left us on April 23, 1519 foresaw that all his manuscripts (which today are largely called Codes) and various drawings were received by his pupil Francesco Melzi, while the paintings that were in his French studio (including the Mona Lisa , La Leda, San Gerolamo) were received by Gian Giacomo Caprotti known as Salai. After Salai died, in 1525, the dispersion of Leonardo's legacy officially began.
LEONARDO – SCIENTIST
1476 Leonardo finishes his apprenticeship in the workshop of Andrea Del Verrocchio but is also particularly active in anatomical research
1482 In the famous letter addressed to Ludovico il Moro in Milan, Leonardo declared himself capable of inventing and building war devices, of designing architectural works.
1486-90 He begins to study systems for the flight of man
1487 On this date, payments for the project of the dome of Milan Cathedral are certified.
1489 He creates spectacular machines to celebrate the wedding between Giangaleazzo Sforza and Isabella d'Aragona.
1494 Works the ducal land near Vigevano
1502 He’s at the service of Cesare Borgia as architect and engineer, following him in his military campaigns in Romagna.
1502-1503 A Borgia document declares Leonardo "Architect and General Engineer"; various notes by Leonardo from this period remind us of his travels to Urbino, Rimini, Cesena, Pesaro, Cesenatico and other cities of the Marche and Romagna, where he studies ports, hydraulic problems, fortifications. To this period belong the very original contributions of Leonardo to the cartography, the survey and the description of the places
1503 He returns to Florence and elaborates plans for the deviation of the river Arno during the siege of Pisa.
1505-1506 He continued his flight studies from his home in Fiesole. In April 1506, he experimented a flying machine with the pupil Tommaso Masini also known with the name of Zoroastro da Peretola. The attempt fails.
1509 Geological studies of the Lombard valleys at the service of Charles d'Amboise, French governor of Milan, for whom he designs hydraulic devices.
1510 Anatomy studies with Marcantonio della Torre at the University of Pavia date back to these years. In the Manuscript G there are references to the design of the hydraulic machine for Bernardo Rucellai in Florence. Botany studies date back to these years.
1513 He leaves Milan for Rome where he stays in the Vatican and will conduct mathematical and scientific studies.
1514 Projects for the drainage of the Pontine marshes and for the port of Civitavecchia.
1515-1519 In France, Leonardo, now elderly, allows himself to be influenced by apocalyptic images. Impressive testimonies of this last period are the drawings in which the end of the world is imagined, a fantastic event in which the forces of nature investigated by Leonardo operate with logical coherence and with terrible beauty. On April 29, 1519, he made a will; he died three days later.
Design for a helicopter
Studies of the Arm