1. Da Vinci, like a few others, was most probably initiated.. And had an authentic sense of enlightenment.

  2. I like Da Vinci too but after William Blake I think he’s the most willfully distorted figure in history. I read this thinking “Oh no” then I read the article and SOME of the ancilliary material and thought “actually pretty good.” But I don’t see that much significance.

    Unlike Michelangelo who seems to have regarded his faith and neo-Platonism as defense against most of his interactions with the world, Da Vinci was actually a typical artist of the times, especially in terms of his curiousity and his obsessive following up of his sense perceptions. On the other hand his attitude towards materials and product was so cavalier what we see of the Last Supper is essentially a reconstruction because Oil Paint will not stick to wet plaster – he should have known better while hee was painting. And of course nobody is even sure what the Battle of Anghiari would have looked like.

    This is the kind of research we know he did, and it is nice to have a paper trail all of a sudden, but the truth is that this is the kind of perceptual investigation that Durer. for example, also did (or since I don’t have a u-umlaut key should I write it Duerer?). It’s engineering, not science. And having had both engineers and scientists in my family I have to say the former often have highly inflated opinions of themselves (as in Da Vinci’s attitude towards his materials). Our use of the world is changed by this but not, I’m afraid, our perception of it. Thank you for mentioning it though.

    1. Thoroughly detailed points. Thanks.
      I find it ironic that the icon he is most associated with, Vitruvian man, was an abandoned thesis by DaVinci.

  3. Da Vinci likely had access to older Roman, Greek, and Egyptian texts on friction that the Vatican missed when they attempted to horde all ancient knowledge for themselves.

    1. Pardon my saying so but there really wasn’t any knowledge the Vatican missed which Da Vinci had access to. While he earned a comfortable living as an engineer, he wasn’t really an insider until he hooked up with King Francis. Second, whatever you want to say about the Church in the West, One reason for their success as a Theocracy was the variety of points of view among the Learned. While treatises on Friction would have survived in the East (among Muslims and the Orthodox) it would have been available in Cadiz where among others Gerbert of Aurillac studied. Dante placed him in the Inferno as Pope Sylvester II. He lived half a millenium before Da Vinci. And, at least indirectly, it is through him Da Vinci would have had access to this material, to the extent (which was considerable) he did.

  4. Just wondering are our elites using Da Vinci notes like they’re using the ancients knowledge to increase their power as usual.

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