Leonardo Da Vinci quotes

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Leonardo Da Vinci

Birthdate: 15. April 1452
Date of death: 2. May 1519

Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci , more commonly Leonardo da Vinci or simply Leonardo, was an Italian Renaissance polymath whose areas of interest included invention, painting, sculpting, architecture, science, music, mathematics, engineering, literature, anatomy, geology, astronomy, botany, writing, history, and cartography. He has been variously called the father of palaeontology, ichnology, and architecture, and is widely considered one of the greatest painters of all time. Sometimes credited with the inventions of the parachute, helicopter and tank, he epitomised the Renaissance humanist ideal.

Many historians and scholars regard Leonardo as the prime exemplar of the "Universal Genius" or "Renaissance Man", an individual of "unquenchable curiosity" and "feverishly inventive imagination". According to art historian Helen Gardner, the scope and depth of his interests were without precedent in recorded history, and "his mind and personality seem to us superhuman, while the man himself mysterious and remote". Marco Rosci notes that while there is much speculation regarding his life and personality, his view of the world was logical rather than mysterious, and that the empirical methods he employed were unorthodox for his time.

Born out of wedlock to a notary, Piero da Vinci, and a peasant woman, Caterina, in Vinci in the region of Florence, Leonardo was educated in the studio of the renowned Florentine painter Andrea del Verrocchio. Much of his earlier working life was spent in the service of Ludovico il Moro in Milan. He later worked in Rome, Bologna and Venice, and he spent his last years in France at the home awarded to him by Francis I of France.

Leonardo was, and is, renowned primarily as a painter. Among his works, the Mona Lisa is the most famous and most parodied portrait and The Last Supper the most reproduced religious painting of all time. Leonardo's drawing of the Vitruvian Man is also regarded as a cultural icon, being reproduced on items as varied as the euro coin, textbooks, and T-shirts. Perhaps fifteen of his paintings have survived. Nevertheless, these few works, together with his notebooks, which contain drawings, scientific diagrams, and his thoughts on the nature of painting, compose a contribution to later generations of artists rivalled only by that of his contemporary, Michelangelo.

Leonardo is revered for his technological ingenuity. He conceptualised flying machines, a type of armoured fighting vehicle, concentrated solar power, an adding machine, and the double hull. Relatively few of his designs were constructed or even feasible during his lifetime, as the modern scientific approaches to metallurgy and engineering were only in their infancy during the Renaissance. Some of his smaller inventions, however, such as an automated bobbin winder and a machine for testing the tensile strength of wire, entered the world of manufacturing unheralded. A number of Leonardo's most practical inventions are nowadays displayed as working models at the Museum of Vinci. He made substantial discoveries in anatomy, civil engineering, geology, optics, and hydrodynamics, but he did not publish his findings and they had no direct influence on later science.

Today, Leonardo is widely considered one of the most diversely talented individuals ever to have lived.

„The water you touch in a river is the last of that which has passed, and the first of that which is coming. Thus it is with time present.“

—  Leonardo Da Vinci

The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci (1883), XIX Philosophical Maxims. Morals. Polemics and Speculations.
Variant: In rivers, the water that you touch is the last of what has passed and the first of that which comes; so with present time.
Source: Leonardo's Notebooks

„Painting is poetry which is seen and not heard, and poetry is a painting which is heard but not seen.“

—  Leonardo Da Vinci

A Treatise on Painting (1651); "The Paragone"; compiled by Francesco Melzi prior to 1542, first published as Trattato della pittura by Raffaelo du Fresne (1651)
Context: Painting is poetry which is seen and not heard, and poetry is a painting which is heard but not seen. These two arts, you may call them both either poetry or painting, have here interchanged the senses by which they penetrate to the intellect.

„Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.“

—  Leonardo Da Vinci

This quotation was first used in print (and misattributed to Leonardo da Vinci) in a science fiction story published in 1975, The Storms of Windhaven. One of the authors, Lisa Tuttle, remembers that the quote was suggested by science fiction writer Ben Bova, who says he believes he got the quote from a TV documentary narrated by Fredric March, presumably I, Leonardo da Vinci, written by John H. Secondari for the series Saga of Western Man, which aired on 23 February 1965. Bova incorrectly assumed that he was quoting da Vinci. The probable author is John Hermes Secondari (1919-1975), American author and television producer.
Misattributed
Variant: For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return.

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„One can have no smaller or greater mastery than mastery of oneself.“

—  Leonardo Da Vinci

The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci (1883), XIX Philosophical Maxims. Morals. Polemics and Speculations.
Variant: You can have no dominion greater or less than that over yourself.

„I have from an early age abjured the use of meat, and the time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look upon the murder of men.“

—  Leonardo Da Vinci

Quoted allegedly "From da Vinci`s Notes" in Jon Wynne-Tyson: The Extended Circle. A Dictionary of Humane Thought. Centaur Press 1985, p. 65 books.google http://books.google.de/books?id=1mMbAQAAIAAJ&q=murder.
Actually the quote is not authentic but made up from a novel by Dmitri Merejkowski (w:Dmitry Merezhkovsky) entitled "The Romance of Leonardo da Vinci" (La Résurrecton de Dieux 1901), translated from Russian into English by Herbert Trench. G.P. Putnam's Sons New York and London, The Knickerbocker Press. There, in Book (i.e. chapter) VI, entitled The Diary of Giovanni Boltraffio, one finds the following:
The master [Leonardo da Vinci] permits harm to no living creatures, not even to plants. Zoroastro http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tommaso_Masini tells me that from an early age he has abjured meat, and says that the time shall come when all men such as he will be content with a vegetable diet, and will think on the murder of animals as now they think on the murder of men ( p. 226 books.google http://books.google.de/books?id=g_pa0OaYX64C&pg=PA226).
However, despite the quote's false attribution, da Vinci was in fact a vegetarian.
Misattributed

„Art is never finished, only abandoned.“

—  Leonardo Da Vinci

Variant: Art is never finished, only abandoned.

„As a day well spent procures a happy sleep, so a life well employed procures a happy death.“

—  Leonardo Da Vinci

The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci (1883), XIX Philosophical Maxims. Morals. Polemics and Speculations.

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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