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Febrile and cogent; every section. But impossible to read all the way through--I'm marking it to my 'abandoned' shelf because its not really a book I would ever consider 'finished' or 'done with'. Jun 05, So B rated it it was amazing. He's like my daddy. Feb 06, Niederhoffer rated it liked it. It's awesome, but I don't understand why they made it so small. Feb 04, Lokeshkorlakunta is currently reading it. IActually I want to by this book but I don't know what is inside the book that it is required for my carrier.

Feb 14, Hacker added it. Laura rated it it was amazing Nov 01, Molly rated it it was amazing Sep 06, Richie rated it it was amazing Feb 09, Ina Cici rated it it was amazing Feb 23, Sogyel Tobgyel rated it it was amazing Mar 10, Mohab rated it it was amazing Apr 12, RA Kweli rated it it was amazing Sep 28, Andrej Georgievski rated it it was amazing Mar 18, Oscar rated it really liked it May 12, Vivin rated it it was amazing Nov 02, Raj rated it it was amazing Jan 12, Amin rated it it was amazing Sep 11, Edgardo rated it really liked it Oct 10, Ahmed Ben Fatma rated it it was amazing Jan 31, Liam Platts rated it really liked it Apr 20, Aidin Hassa rated it it was amazing Feb 10, Sara Amori rated it it was amazing Jun 28, Lists with This Book.

Nov 12, Alex rated it it was amazing Shelves: Da Vinci was very specific. On depicting a battle: The distance between the corner of your eye and your ear is the same as the height of your ear. But then, on the less specific side, there's this: His specificity varies in inverse proportion to his subject's attractiveness. Unfortunately, "Women must be represented in modest attitude, their legs close together, their arms closely folded, their heads inclined and somewhat on one side" p. Some of it's amazingly perceptive, and some of it's completely wrong, and some I don't understand at all, but the effect of reading his diary is weird and powerful; more than, say, reading an autobiography tends to be.

While he probably knew his journals would be read he actually addresses "Reader" off and on , he was still writing mainly for himself, so there's a directness. What comes across most is his curiosity. He'll jot down some weird paragraph about shadows or something, and you understand that this is what he must have done all day today: True, his conclusion was that they send out "dark rays" that bounce into "reflex streams" or something, which I think might be gibberish, but still.

What did you do today? I pretty much just thought about boobs. View all 13 comments. The mind of a painter must resemble a mirror, which always takes the color of the object it reflects and is completely occupied by the images of as many objects are in front of it. I picked up this book on a whim, and read it for the same reason. I mu The mind of a painter must resemble a mirror, which always takes the color of the object it reflects and is completely occupied by the images of as many objects are in front of it.

I must admit right off the bat that this book is often a bit of a bore to read through. Simply turning from page to page, taking note of whatever sketch caught your eye, would be enough to convince you that this man was a great genius. Of course, he was a great painter, one of the very best; this alone would be enough to secure him lasting fame. He sketched several ideas for inventions, many of them frighteningly futuristic, such as a flying machine and a tank. He made accurate maps and designed buildings and bridges. He even made careful studies of the workings of the eye and the behavior of light.

At first sight, all this seems almost impossible, like Isaac Newton and J. Turner rolled into one. Not to detract from his accomplishments, of course. For example, Leonardo was not especially adept at performing feats of logic or reason; nor was he an experimenter, making careful and controlled tests of his ideas. He had the ability to make his mind a mirror of his environment, and then to accurately and attractively depict whatever phenomenon caught his fancy.

Simple as this sounds, this can get you a long way. For instance, if you set yourself the task of drawing a bridge as accurately as possible, this will teach you something about the design of bridges, how they are constructed and bear weight. Do this with everything around you in your daily life, as Leonardo did, and it will force you to pay attention to the way things are put together and teach you how they work.

This is the main lesson Leonardo taught me about becoming a Renaissance man: This will allow you to notice things that other people might not, and then to represent your observations in an engaging form. View all 7 comments. Jun 18, Lynde rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: Yes, I just added a "homeschool" shelf. Because I am supplementing a bit. Even private schools don't cut the mustard at this point.

I have highly creative children--one of which is a constant stream of inventions. He spews out ideas with dry erase markers to windows, takes garbage from the recycling bin as if it is a golden treasure. Well, it is clearly time for me to nurture this wee seedling with some other inventors--so I grabbed this book with a few others. We all adore this book and it is an inspiration to us all. Make sure to prepare with some extra pencils and paper--because you will be making some extra "blueprints" and maybe even a few extra trips to the hardware store to build some stuff Whenever I see the grammar police rear their ugly head, I'll remember LDV wrote backwards in an indecipherable scrawl and with an akward form of shorthand.

Da Vinci was a bloody genius. Given that Leonardo never had much of a formal education, and that his intelligence was borne out of observation and imagination, what this book contains is truly astonishing. It blurs what modernity would consider the lines between the arts and the sciences, but I don't think that matters. What really matters is the hard evidence that a self-taught scientist figured out things that were taught to me in my science lessons at school. I'll give you an example. The way light hits and enters the eye. Da Vinci drew a diagram of it and it is so accurate that I found myself staring.

Six hundred years later and modern science is using just what Da Vinci figured out. Of course, science has existed for millennia; I'm not suggesting Da Vinci was the father of modern science. But it is wonderful, reading this and going 'I learnt that in school! And he did it without modern technology or formal education! What a truly remarkable man, and one who was far, far ahead of his time. Just imagine what he could be doing if he were alive today. I really urge you to. It is a fascinating read, and well worth your time. Mar 28, Mohammed Al-Garawi rated it it was amazing Shelves: No you don't get it.

Those are the notebooks of Leonardo Da Vinci. The ones he carried around all the time. They contain his thoughts on painting, sculpturing, anatomy, architecture, philosophy, and many more intriguing subjects. They also showcase some of his scribbles and initial designs for inventions and paintings of people and scenery. Reading the notebooks gives you the privilege of diving into the mind of the Grand Designer. I never thought I'd be lucky to experience this. Absolutely a favo No you don't get it. Feb 26, Barb rated it really liked it Recommends it for: Such a look at the way da Vinci thought.

Usually, we see his visual works. This book translates and organizes his written journals to provide us a look at his thoughts on art and the world around him. Very enjoyable to browse, though not necessarily a work to be read straight through. I never knew who da Vinci was. It was only after watching the movie, The Da Vinci Code, I came to understand that Leonardo da Vinci was a person who creates puzzles for his time pass.

From Epithome Plutarchi, r5ol.. Humanist with lira da braccio. Museum of Art, Lute player, with lira da braccio in Fund, Title page of Lorenzo de' 3. Sound-hole rose of spinettina in illus. Intarsia decoration in double symmetry; 4. Lira da braccio player improvising. Detail of spinettina illus. Bibliothdque Nationale, Paris, several styles of decoration: Horses in Leonardo's Adoration of the work with stars in gothic tracery. Horse heads in front view and profile. Orpheus in Hades, after a bronze plaque 5. Horse head in front and profile views, by Modemo.

Lira da braccio in wood intarsia. Horse head in front and profile views. Institut de France, A 6zv. Page fuom The Book of Hours of Jeanne 5. Ambrogio de Predis, angel playing a d'Eoreux illustrated by Jean pucelle. Cupola fresco in the Santuario of 5. Saronno, by Gaudenzio Ferrari. Lorenzo Costa, Musician playing Lira 5. Angel bowing and blowing; detail da Braccio. Angel blowing a double bagpipe; 5. Francia, two angels, the left one playing detail of illus. Giulio and Domenico Campagnola, 5. Detail from a cassone by Bar- 5.

Drawings and text bv Leonardo for the tolommeo di Giovanni. Louvre, performance of Danae including a niche Paris. Metropolitan Museum of Art, 5. Drawings and text bv Leonardo for Museum, Berlin. Leonardo, sketch of the two halves 5. B r9o58 v stage construction and a mountain B4rv. Arundel M 5. Preparation for the Entombment ot' r. Woodcut depicting Orpheus teaching 5. Juxtaposition of human and animal skulls.

Engraving by Battista Franco.

The genius of Leonardo da Vinci

George with a scudo, Donatello. From an edition of Poliziano's Cose 5. Four shields in different form, in The Resutection by Donatello, right pulpit shackled feet and wrists. Windsor in San Lorenzo, Florence. Donatello, Marzocco, with heraldic horseback. Emblematic shields attached to the back camouflaged as a bagpipe. Tree of Life, Giorgione. Animal skull used as shield inthe Battle 5. Bagpipe player backward on horseback. Woodcut by Barthel Beham. Mantegna, page with shield, in the Kritischer Katalog , no.

James fresco in the Eremitani 6. Putto with shield, Mantegna St. Andrea, 6-rz Drawing by Leonardo: Ornamental teschi di caaallo suspended 5. Skull of Arabian stallion in dorsal view. Madrid MS II with 7 flowers, probably symbolic of the folio 76 r. Star of Bethlehem and other plants. Musical instruments Drawing, Windsor rz4z4. Proportions between units of time and rebuses by Leonardo. Marinoni, I Rebus di Leonardo da Vinci, 7. Cross section of an onion and diagrams nos. Quaderni d'Anatomia V 5 v.

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Rebus combining musical score with showing the vesicles. Windsor d'Anatomia V r5 r.

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Set of 9 schematic drawings illustrating showing vesicles. Detail, Quaderni the behavior of light, the force of a blow, d'Anatomia V zo v. Detail from CA 7. Diagram of the brain and the location rz5 ra.

Reisch's Margarita P hilo sophiae Strasbourg, 15 o4. Concentric circles in water. French hurdy-gurdy in lute shape, 7. Tabulation of various blows upon eighteenth century. Sketch of a bell hit bv a hammer ac- 8. Wheel and stopping mechanism of a companying the text. Detail from C 6 v. French eighteenth-century hurdy- gurdy 7. Organistrum played by two elders end waves as a model for the behavior of of twelfth century. Portico de la Gloria sound waves. Sketches for different versions of the 7. Three diagrams accompanying the viola organista. Detail, CA r99 vb.

Angel playing a hurdy-gurdy. Rebounding sound deceiving the ear as 8. From to its origin. E ar of the listener deceived by a re- in the Santuario at Saronno. Detail, C 5 v' 8. Reflection of an object by a mirror Michael Praetorius's Syntagma Musicum comparable to the rebounding of sound Il, " De Organographia," Nuremberg, by a wall. Detail, A 19 v. Explanation of the rebounding of a ball 8. Keyboard instrument with wheels, and of the human voice from a wall at built by Truchado, Detail, A 19 r. Diagram of the impact of the sound of a 8.

Oblique view of the soundboard with bell toward a wall and reflected from wheels from illus. Drum used as acoustical detective. Detail, MS zo17 Bib. Clavichord; detail of the intarsias in 7. Diminution of sound in proportion to in his palace in Urbino. Three drawings for a viola 7.

Seven triangles symbolizing the fading organista. Drawings for the machinery 9. From Virdung, Musica getutscht. Old woman with pot drum; woodcut 8. Two sketches relating to by Tobias Stimmer, sixteenth century. Frans Hals the Elder, The Rommelpot perhaps for a project of canalization. Richmond, Collection Sir 8. Sketch of a viola organista Herbert Cook. Breughel theElder, The 8.

Construction details for a Combat befu,een Carnioal and Lent. MS H to4 v. Drawing for a compact form 9. Madrid MS II, folio 75 v. Drawing of viola organista 4 dampers. Codice Arundel BM r. Sketches version of the viola organista see illus. Madrid MS I folio 9r v. Sketch of drivingmechanism drum operated bv pinbarrel cylinder. Escape mechanism of a clock with crown slits instead of finger holes for glissando wheel diagram by the author. Clockwork with escape mechanism.

Quademi d'Anatomia V 17 r: Sketch From the intarsias in the choir stalls of of larynx. Monte Oliveto, by Fra Giovanni da rr. Quaderni d'Anatomia V 16 r: Arundel BM r75 r, sketches of 9. Madrid MS I folio r5o r. Mechanized new key mechanisms for wind kettledrum. Drums driven by carriage tr. A r9oo9r Aror , drawings wheels.

Mechanized drum activated n. Pair of kettledrums and two cylindrical cords for straightening and bending. From Virdung, Musica getutscht, n. Transverse flute by Theobald Bcihm Basel, r5rr. Arundel BM r. Madrid MS II folio 76 r. Fama with quadruple trumpet, in a 9. The two stopping bridges tapestry depicting the Triumph of Fame, permit two tones to be produced North French or Flemish, sixteenth simultaneously on a single shing.

Positive organ with alternating bellows, 9. Arundel zg BM r75 r. Arundel BM r75 r. Arundel M r75 r. Angel musician playing an organetto. Museo dell'Opera del Duomo, Florence. Arundel BM t75 r. Angel playing an organetto with a large Detail. Arundel zg BM q5 r. Detail of the organ panels Detail. Angels, one of whom plays an organetto 9. Rimini its mathematical background, was used Cathedral. Detail from Pollaiuolo's tomb for Sixtus tofore regarded only as artisans, the IY, Significantly, Pollaiuolo status of scholars. Study for Madonna and Child zt: Prospettiva, for rNindsor rzz76 r.

Here I have aimed at the maximum clarity of his own language, even at the cost of style. Therefore I do not necessarily feel bound to the translations by Richter and MacCurdy. In his notebooks Leonardo several times mentions books and scripts of his, including some on music, which have not come down to us; it is probable that he only planned to write them or did not finish them. On the other hand, the recent discovery of seven hundred pages of his writings, known as the Madrid Codices, warns us against premafure assumptions that they are lost forever.

At any rate, in the present volume devoted to Leonardo and music it seems appropriate to list treatises on musical subjects written or planned by him but not known to exist. B 79oj7 B zo v , Brizio p. He called upon himself to explore "perspective through the function of sight, and. You will speak of music and treat of other senses. Then describe the nature of the five senses. Quaderni d'Anatomia IV ro r: Confusion has arisen about whether Leonardo wrote a book on musical instruments or whether he just quoted from such a book by another author.

The divergence stems from Quaderni d'Anatomia IV ro r, where Leonardo interrupts his discussion about the noise produced by cannons and the influence of their length upon pitch by referring to the fact that this matter has been "Jean-Paul Richter, TheLiteraryWorks of Leonardo daVinci London: The paragraph with this passage is rather pale in Leonardo's original script, yet it clearly says: E in questo pii non mi stenterd perchd nel libro delli strumenti armonici ne ho trattato assai copiosamente.

I shall not go into this at greater length because I have fully treated it in the book on musical instruments. It is not clear from the translation by MacCurdy whether Leonardo refers to a book by another author or one written by himself. Zo says ne ho trattato "1 have treate d" ;Brizio Scritti Scelti, [Turin, ag52], p. Therefore, it is probable that here, as in many other cases, Leonardo refers to a book already planned in his mind but not written for lack of time. My sincere thanks go to the late Professor Ladislao Reti, who, after his re- discovery of the two Leonardo Codices in the Biblioteca Nacional in Madrid, kindly helped me to obtain the rich organological material therein that was relevant to my book; to Professors Augusto Marinoni and Carlo Pedretti for valuable information and exchanges of opinion leading to correct interpretations of sketches for new and fantastic musical instruments; also to Professor Marinoni for his kind permission to reproduce some of his interpretations of Leonardo's picture rebuses.

Olga Raggio, who, in innumerable discussions, helped me to clarify tricky problems in Leonardo's peculiar Latin and capricious Italian. May I thank the Biblioteca Comunale of Lodi and its staff for kind help in my research on the relations between Franchino Gaffurius and Leonardo, and the late Monsignore Angelo Ciceri of the Venerabile Fabbrica del Duomo di Milano for enthusiastic support of my examination of works by Gaspar van Weerbecke and other composers contemporary with Leonardo.

With Bo Lawergren, professor of physics at Hunter College, I had many interesting and helpful conversations about Leonardo's inventions of musical instruments, and on the chapter on acoustical experiments. He also helped considerably in shaping the index. May I express my gratitude to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, my working place for no less than forty-two years, and for the use of its magnificent library and, for illustrations, its photographic collection and slide library; to Miss Janet Byrne, of the Museum's Print Department, for her kind help with illustrations; and also to the Gabinetto Fotografico, Florence, for photographs.

Many thanks are due to the Yale University Press, above all to Edward Tripp for his constructive optimism and helpful conversations about the form of the script, and to Maura Tantillo for her speedy and exact editing of a difficult text. Institut de France MS zo38 Bib.

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If he was, how can we explain that this important facet of his genius has been neglected? In fact the towering and ever-growing mountain of Leonardo literature does not contain a systematic analysis of Leonar- do's musical interests but onlv some occasional, superficial attempts by art histo- rians not versed in musical history and the environment of Leonardo. Yet Leonar- do's manuscripts contain a large body of musical thoughts, ideas, experiments, and inventions, a cosmos indeed, for these are not isolated but interrelated and inte- grated in many ways.

There are also a great number of testimonials from Leonardo's contemporaries and from the following generation extolling him as a supreme musician. Could all this be legend? One major obstacle in the rediscovery of Leonardo as a musician is the fact that no written composition of his has come down to us and, in all probability, never existed. He was an improviser, and it was not customary for improvisers of Leonar- do's time to confide their music to paper.

Thus it is not surprising that modern musical historians have little interest in the rich and subtle culture of improvisation of the late quattrocento and early cinquecento. Still, had they patiently gone through the thousands of pages in Leonardo's notebooks, they might have been astonished by the wealth of musical material, sketches, inventions, and sugges- tions. As for the art historians, why should they spend much time on Leonardo's musical interests if they were not of sufficient importance to the historians of music? Leonardo was, in fact, profoundly occupied with music. He was a performer and teacher of music; he was deeply interested in acoustics and made many experi- ments in this field that had immediate bearing on music; he wrestled with the concept of musical time, and he invented a considerable number of ingenious musi- cal instruments and made improvements on existing ones.

He also had some highly original ideas about the philosophy of music that were intimately connected with his philosophy of painting. If we knew nothing of his classification of music other than his remark calling lt "figurazione delle cose invisibili" the shaping of the invisible , we would have a clear indication of the depth and originality of his musical thought. Leonardo's involvement with music was not one facet, one particle among many others, of his creative power but an essential, indispensable, integral, organic part of the whole structure of his scientific-artistic energy, interrelated with the many other aspects that the universe had for him.

Music-as an activity as well as the subject of meditation-is an elemelt ofhis forma mentis or, as he might have said, figurazione dellamente. The interpenetration of this element, music, with many of his other activities and studies is the theme of this book. May I illustrate this by a few examples? Ingredients of music, that is, acoustical phenomena such as echo are ex- plored, often in analogy to the behavior of light, as contributions to theoretical physics.

Proportion theory is enriched by the concept of a perspective of sound in analogy to proportion in the visual realm. Anatomy, the study of the living organism as a machine, provides him with an opportunity for creating new or better musical instruments, for instance, in the image of the larynx and its cartilage rings; or by the imitation of hand and finger tendons for the construction of keys for wind and other instruments. In the colorful masks, processions, and stage plays in which Leonardo partici- pated as organizer, designer, and stage engineer, he must have enthusiastically welcomed the opportunity to adapt himself to the music that permeated the visual phantasmagories and even did construct fantastic instruments for the occasion.

The Paragone was the customary more or less learned discussion of the comparative rank of painting, sculpture, poetry, and music held in summer gardens by circles of courtiers with philosophical pretensions. Renaissance painting, despite the development of linear perspective on exact mathematical foundations, was not yet considered one of the liberal arts. Why not elevate it to the rank of music, which since antiquity, by virtue of its mathematical basis, was one of the sisters of the quadrivium, together with arithmetic, geometry, and astronomy? Leonardo's musical talent was attested to by contemporaries or near contem- poraries: The great mathematician Luca Pacioli, whose relation with Leonardo is de- scribed in chapter z, calls Leonardo "degnissimo pictore, prospectivo, architecto, musico.

Magliabecchiano 17 , abook owned by Antonio Billi, written between 15o6 and r53z published by Carl V. Fabiczy in Arch Stor. Fu eloquente nel parlare, et raro sonatore di lira et fu maestro di quella d'Atalante Migliorotti. Dal detto Magnifico Lorenzo fu mandato al duca di Milano a presentarli insieme con Atalante Migliorotti una lira, che unico era in sonare tale extrumento. From Lorenzo the Magnificent [Medici], he was sent to the Duke of Milan [Lodovico il Moro, of the Sforza familyJ to present to him, together with Atalante Migliorotti, a lira, since he was unique in playing this instrument.

Fuit ingenio valde, comi nitido, liberali, vultu autem longe venustissimo; et cum elegantiae omnis delitiarumque maxime theatralium mirificus inventor ac arbiter esset, ad liramque scyte caneret, cunctis per omnem aetatem principibus mire placuit. He had an extraordinary power of mind [he was of extraordinary genius]; he was gracious [friendlyJ, precise, and generous, with a radiant, graceful appearance [expression]; and since he was a magic inventor and connoisseur of all subtleties and delights for the stage, and played the lira [lira da braccio] rvith the bow [scythe] he miraculously pleased all the princes through his whole life.

Benvenuto Cellini, n'ho owned a manuscript copy of Leonardo's Treatise on Painting, refers in his autobiography, begun in Florence in , to Leonardo as "painter, sculptor, architect, philosopher, musician; a veritable angel incarnate. The Vite appeared in two editions, the first in r55o, the second, revised and enlarged, in I quote from the second edition Vasari, ed.

Milanesi [Sansoni, ago6l, vol. Dette alquanto d'opera alla musica; ma tosto si risolvd a imparare a suonare la lira, come quello che dalla natura aveva spirito elevatissimo e pieno di leggiadria, onde sopra quella cantd divinamente all improvviso. Awenne che morto Giovan Galeazzo duca di Milano, e creato Lodovico Sforza nel grado medesimo l'anno , fu condotto a Milano con gran riputazione Lionardo al duca, il quale molto si dilettava del suono della lira, 1 perche sonasse; e Lionardo porto quello strumento ch'egli aveva di suo mano fabbricato d'argento gran parte in forma d'un teschio di cavallo, cosa bizzarca e nuova, acciocche l'armonia fosse con maggior tuba e piu sonora di voce; laonde superd tutti i musici che quivi erano concorsi a sonare.

Oltra cio, fu il migliore dicitore di rime all'improvviso del tempo suo. Ludwig Goldscheider, in Leonardo da Vinci Vienna: At that time Leonardo, with great fanfare, was brought to the duke to play for him, since the duke had a great liking for the sound of the lira; and Leonardo brought there the instrument which he had built n ith his own hands, made largely of silver, in the shape of a horse skull-a bizarre, nen, thing-so that the sound ll'armonia would have greater loudness and sonority; with this, he surpassed all the musi- cians who came there to play.

In addition, he was the best improviser of rhymes of his time. Apart from the detailed description of the lyre, the most interesting statement here is the accent on the fact that Leonardo went to Milan for musical reasons, to play the lira for the duke.

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Leonardo da Vinci as a musician | Emanuel Winternitz -

Could it be that Leonardo--who, in his application for a position at the Milan court, referred so strongly to the duke's plan for the giant bronze equestrian monument for his the duke's father-thought it a good idea to remind the duke, by a new and bizarre idea of a horse-skull instrument, of his familiarity with horse anatomy?

But they repeat largely secondhand information and I will quote here only one interesting suggestion contained in the sixth book of his Trattato dell 'arte della pittura because it is symptomatic of the sixteenth-centun, tradition regarding Leonardo as an outstanding master of the art of musi c. Lomazzo suggests to painters various allegorical subjects appropriate for the decoration of musical instruments, for instance, the nine choirs of music, each devoted to another kind of instrument and each represented by three outstanding masters of these instru- ments.

Now the fourth choir, devoted to the lira, is reserved to "Leonardo Vinci pittore" and to two other virtuosi "certainly not unknown to you: Alfonso da Ferrara and Alessandro Striggio mantovano. The artists chosen were to be Michelangelo lead , Gaudenzio Ferrari tin , Caravaggio iron , Raphael brass , Mantegna quicksilver , Titian silver , and Leonardo gold, to reveal his splendor.

Contrary to the enthusiastic admiration of Leonardo's musicianship by his contemporaries and the generation following, the Leonardo scholars in our century do not mention music at all or content themselves at best with quoting remarks by Vasari.

The Complete Works

The application, of which only a draft survives, states, after an enumeration of Leonardo's many talents, ". In the mid-nineteenth century, Jacob Burckhardt, who in several of his writings for instance, his Cicerone [Basel, ], p. Clark repeats Vasari's report of Leonardo's first visit to the Milanese court and speaks of a "silver lyre [slc] in the form of a horse's head testa [sicl. But this is followed by a very imaginative sentence: Benvenuto Cellini and Lomazzo sttTl sounded a strong echo of it. The excellent book by Roberto Marcolongo, Leonardo daVinci, artista, scienziato Milan, a95o , contains an interesting analysis of Leonardo's scientific achievements but has nothing to say about Leonardo's musical thoughts and activities, beyond mentioning that Leonardo was an excellent player of the "cetra" a term meaning either the ancient Greek kithara or the Renaissance cittern and that he constructed various musical instruments and the monochord-an obvious misunderstanding because the monochord goes back to antiquity.

I , includes the statement: Inevitably, the practice of improvisation was not fully understood in Richter's time, and most of the instru- ments mentioned, such as the viola organista and the zither, were not recognized for what they actually were. During one of my visits to Basel between the two world wars, I visited the house of Burckhardt.

An elderly caretaker who had been employed there during Burckhardt's last years showed me around. His remarks about Burckhardt's musical inclinations are unforgettable: It is characteristic that in the section "Greatness in History" in Weltgeschichtliche Betrachtungen he re- peatedly cites Mozart as an example.

We know from students of Burckhardt that he used to improvise and to sing songs by Schubert to his own accompaniment. This will best be done by reminding the reader of the musical life in Florence and Milan and showing Leonar- do's relation to four friends who had an intimate affinity with music, each in a different way: Of the musical education of Leonardo during his early years in Florence, few facts are known, but it is beyond all doubt that the intense musical life there at his time, at court, at church, and among artisans and peasants, must have influenced him deeplv and lastingly.

There exists such a wealth of sacred and secular music and musical treatises, biographical material, and reports of festivities, processions, and theatrical perfor- mances at the Medici court that a musical panorama of Florence in the second half of the quattrocento is not needed here. One important fact related to Leonardo's early musical instruction is found in Vasari. Vasari's biography of Andrea del Verrocchio begins with a list of his gifts and activities: In t47z he was accepted into the compdnia de San Luca, the artists' guild in Florence.

There he absorbed his earliest instruction in many arts, and Vasari's inclu- sion of music among Verrocchio's talents answers a question never asked by art historians or music historians: True, Vasari was often maligned for adding complimentary material freely into The Life ot' Artists. At least as far as music was concerned, I do not think that he deserved this criticism.

But it alludes significantly to Il Moro's plan for the equestrian monument for his father. When Leonardo left the town of the Medicis to begin a new life in Milan, he must have found a totally different environment in the rich, aggressive, and po- litically ambitious city. It attracted him chiefly as a military engineer and for the opportunity to participate in the planning of novel military projects, new types of fortifications, waterworks such as canals and irrigation, new types of artillery, and also another enorrnous project in the field of bronze casting-the giant equestrian monument in honor of Francesco Sforza.

The Capella del Duomo, which reached back to , assumed an international character under Galeazzo Maria Sforza, who between o and r47o employed French musicians, of whom the greatest was ]osquin Des Prez. In Galeazzo established his private chapel at the court and employed all foreign musicians of the Capella del Duomo.

Its leader was Antonio Guinati, and his assistant, Gasparo van Weerbecke. Gaffurius tried to strengthen the Capella del Duomo and substantially increased the body of the singers. He inevitably must have compared the spiritual level of the court of the Sforzas with that of the Medicis. There was no Marsilio Ficino here, little Neoplatonic tradi- tion, and no Politian.

Did Leonardo miss the unparalleled intensity of the Florentine humanist tradition and resent the lesser emphasis in Milan on the renascence of the culture of the ancients? We may never know. The artistic ideals and guides inherent in classical antiquity were probably less important to him than to most of his great artist-contemporaries. On the other hand Milan rvas an international center for music and other arts. Famous German architects collaborated in the colossal task of the building of the Duomo.

Music in Milan, in the last third of the quattrocento, n'as intenselv alive and full of radical innovations that certainly must have affected Leonardo. Nearer than Florence to the sources of transalpine polyphony, Milan had become a melting pot in more than one regard. There was the antagonism and also fusion between local Italian homophonic tradition and the new Flemish and French polyphonic style; there were new compromises and mutual stimuli. A similar process of osmosis went on between sacred and secular music, specifically between the Capella del Duomo favoring the national Italian style, and the private chapel of the Duke, favoring the foreigners such as Josquin, Agricola, Jaquotin, Cordier, and Compdre.

Whoever visits his house in Arezzo can convince himself of Vasari's interest in music by looking at his frescoes on the walls. And most important, in his description of musical scores in paintings of the masters he will not restrict him- self to enumerating the instruments of the angels but often explains a detail that only a musical connoisseur could observe-for instance, that in a sacra conoersazione, one angel plays, another tunes, and a third one waits for this entry.

He was bom in , one year before Leonardo, in Lodi, an old and beautiful town southeast of Milan, with a hospitable library at the Chiesa dell' Incoronata, still proudlv preserving his books. Educated in the Benedictine Cloister of Lodivecchio and destined to become a priest, he returned to secular life for several years before being ordained in or He studied musical theory with the Carmelite monk of Flemish origin, Johan- nes Goodendag Bonadies , and, after a short time as a singer at the Cathedral of Lodi, he began to teach musical theory in Mantua at the court of the Gonzagas and was called as a teacher and composer to Genoa by the Doge Adorno.

For political reasons he left for Naples, where, under the influence of Flemish musicians, above all the famous Johannes Tinctoris, he continued his theoretical studies. In r48o Caffurius completed his first great treatise, Theoricum Opus Musicae Disciplinae, fa- mous, among other things, for its beautiful woodcuts.

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Probably because of the black plague, he left Naples and returned to Lodi, where the bishop employed him as a teacher of young singers of sacred music; there he began his second great treatise, the Practica Musicae. In he was called to Bergamo as Maestro della Capella del Duomo and completed there his Practica, which, however, was published only much later, in in Milan. In he was elected to the prestigious position of Maestro della Capella del Duomo di Milano and stayed there, interrupted only by small journeys, for the rest of his life, thirty-eight years. Among other famous teachers at the gymnasium was Luca Pacioli, the great mathematician see p.

Gaffurius' third great treatise, De Harmonia Musicorum lnstrumentorurn, com- r. Ten years ago, when I visited Lodi, the staff of the library and of the Museo Civico helped me with greatest courtesy in my research on Gaffurius. Gaffurius was elected to teach music at the venerable University of Pavia, which at the time had the only chair of music at any Italian university, then lauded as a remarkable innovation.

If one is eager to trace Gaffurius' personal relations with Leonardo, one is amply rewarded.