The last words Leonardo wrote were:
I must go. My soup is getting cold.
They were on a piece of paper surrounded with sketches of new ideas and new inventions:
Controversy still rages over whether Leonardo was a vegetarian but a letter sent to his last patron, Giuliano di Lorenzo de' Medici, indicates he was.
Giuliano’s father was Lorenzo the Magnificent. The Medici’s in Florence had become fabulously wealthy by exploiting newly discovered trade routes. Giuliano followed in the family tradition by bank rolling a voyage taken by Andrea Corsali, a renowned Italian explorer. Corsali, who sailed to Asia and to the south seas sent Giuliano reports of his journey.
He wrote saying that contrary to current thinking of the time Sumatra and Ceylon (Sri Lanka) are two distinct islands. He is also known for identifying New Guinea and guessed that what we now call Australia existed. He even named the constellation the Southern Cross.
In one of his long letters to Giuliano, Corsali mentioned Leonardo while describing followers of Hinduism:
‘Certain infidels called Guzzarati (Gujerati) are so gentle that they do not feed on anything which has blood, nor will they allow anyone to hurt any living thing, like our Leonardo da Vinci’.
Read more about Leonardo da Vinci and his connection with the Loire Valley in Leonardo da Vinci: The Amboise Connection (available from Amazon).
The book was written to commemorate the 500th anniversary of Leonardo da Vinci’s death in 1519 at Clos Lucé, Amboise, France where he spent the last three years of his life.
Post by Pamela
Pamela, a Graduate and Tutor in the History of Art, trained as a magazine journalist at the London College of Printing and has been a freelance writer for over twenty years. She has a passion for history and has published several books on various subjects. Click hear to see all of Pamela’s books.