da Vinci

1452 - 1519

 Renaissance Art Map
     Leonardo da Vinci - biography
     Leonardo da Vinci
     1452-1481 Leonardo in the Florence of the Medici    
     1482-1499 At the court of Ludovico il Moro    
     1500-1508 The return to Florence    
     1508-1513 The Milan of Charles d'Amboise    
     1513-1519 The last years: Rome and France    



Leonardo da Vinci
c. 1512



The last years: Rome and France




Leonardo in Rome


Possibly already residing in Rome at the time of Cesare Borgia (1502-03) and under the pontificate of Julius II (1504-05), Leonardo returned to the papal city between 1513 and 1516 when Giuliano, duke of Nemours, brother of Leo X, offered him protection. In this deeply intellectual and creative milieu, artists could meet notable figures such as Pacioli, Bramante, Giocondo da Verona, Giuliano da Sangallo, and Raphael. Leonardo's work, however, remained confined to an almost private circle: having completed the De ludo geometrico, he studied Archimedes, drew up plans for the drainage of the Pontine Marshes, completed a drawing of the Villa Adriana at Tivoli, and submitted plans for the gate of Civitavecchia. There is no trace of the two small pictures of the Roman period mentioned by Vasari. His studies of military architecture continued: in Latium he familiarized himself with the most recent defensive works, the fortresses of Ostia, Nettuno, and Civita Castellana.


Leonardo da Vinci, Study of Dancing Figures, c.1515,
Gallerie dell'Accademia, Venice.


Leonardo da Vinci
, Scheme for the Draining of the Pontine Marshes, 1514-15,
Royal Library, Windsor.
In 1515 Giuliano obtained from his brother, the pope, possession of this flooded area.


Leonardo da Vinci, Studies for Civitavecchia, Codice Atlantico, c.1514, Biblioteca Ambrosiana, Milan.
From 1508 Bramante was occupied with the harbor structures of Civitavecchia, in particular the defensive system and the dockyard. On Bramante's death, Leonardo was invited to the city (1513-14); this drawing may have aimed to re-evoke a harbor city of antiquity based on the configuration to be found on Roman coins. Initiated under Julius II, the reconstruction of the fortress was continued by Giuliano da Sangallo, on the initiative of Leo X, and was subsequently completed by Michelangelo.


Leonardo da Vinci
Map of Tuscany and the Chiana Valley
Black chalk, pen, ink and colour on paper
Royal Library, Windsor


Giovanni Antonio Dosio
, View of the Courtyard of the Belvedere, Gabinetto dei Disegni e delle Stampe,
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence.
Leonardo lived in the Vatican where Pope Leo X had given him an apartment.
With Giuliano de' Medici Leonardo went to Parma (1514) and Florence (1515)
where he worked on restoration plans around San Lorenzo and in the Medici Palace.


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