Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci
Who (is he): He was an Italian polymath, scientist, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, painter, sculptor, architect, botanist, musician and writer. He was born on April 15, 1452(1452-04-15) as the illegitimate son of a notary, Piero da Vinci, and a peasant woman, Caterina, at Vinci in the region of Florence. He died on May 2, 1519 at an age of 67.
What (are his contributions): He conceptualised a helicopter, a tank, concentrated solar power, a calculator, the double hull and outlined a rudimentary theory of plate tectonics. As a scientist, he greatly advanced the state of knowledge in the fields of anatomy, civil engineering, optics, and hydrodynamics. His journals include a vast number of inventions, both practical and impractical. They include musical instruments, hydraulic pumps, reversible crank mechanisms, finned mortar shells, and a steam cannon.
When (his professional life begin ): 1476
Why (did Leonardo start doing all this things): Helen Gardner says "The scope and depth of his interests were without precedent...His mind and personality seem to us superhuman, the man himself mysterious and remote". Leonardo was the archetype of the renaissance man, a man whose unquenchable curiosity was equaled only by his powers of invention. Basically, he just did all this because of his curiousity.
Where (was his starting point): In 1466, at the age of fourteen, Leonardo was apprenticed to one of the most successful artists of his day, Andrea di Cione, known as Verrocchio. Verrocchio's workshop was at the centre of the intellectual currents of Florence, assuring the young Leonardo of an education in the humanities.
Consequences (of his existence): Liana Bortolon, writing in 1967, said: "Because of the multiplicity of interests that spurred him to pursue every field of knowledge ... Leonardo can be considered, quite rightly, to have been the universal genius par excellence, and with all the...
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