Leonardo born in Vinci(Tuscany) on 15 April, the illegitimate son
of the notary Ser Piero da Vinci and a peasant woman called Caterina.
His childhood was spent in the country.
a fiscal declaration by Leonardo's grandfather mentions that Leonardo
lives with his grandparents, his father and the latter's wife.
Death of Leonardo's paternal grandfather. His family moves to Florence.
Leonardo accepted into Andrea Verrocchio's studio.
Leonardo, aged twenty, listed as a member of the Guild of St. Luke
3 First signed and dated (5 August) drawing by Leonardo; collaborates
on the head of an angel in Verrocchio's Baptism of Christ.
8 April, Leonardo accused of sodomy in connection with the Saltarelli
Affair. The case is dismissed on 7 July.
10 January, Leonardo commissioned by the Municipal Council to
paint an altarpeice for the San Bernardo Chapel at the Signoria. Begins
the portrait of Ginevra Benci.
Leonardo works on the restoration of the gardens of the Piazza San
Marco in Florence, and for Lorenzo de' Medici. He receives a commission
to paint an Adoration of the magi for the high altar of the
chuch of San Donato in Scopeto. Of his early works, only the Portrait of Ginevra Benci
(Washington D.C.) and the small Annunciation in the Louvre remain.
Letter to the Duke of Milan, Ludovico Moro (the Moor), in which
Leonardo offers his services as painter, sculptor, civil and military
engineer, and musician. He moves to Milan without having finished
his Adoration of the Magi. Probable date of his Portrait of a Musician
and of the Lady with an Ermine.
25 April, Leonardo signs a contract for the of the Rocks, commissioned
by the ecclesiatical authorities of Milan. Probably begins
studies for the equestrian monument to the Condottiere Francesco
Sforza, Ludovico's father.
In addition to working on his commissions, Leonardo devotes himself
to architectural studies and projects, and even to plans for a flying
machine. A very hypothetical trip to the East is dated around
Leonardo stages banquets and a wedding feast for the Court. Begins
work on the equestrian statue of Francesco Sforza.
July, Leonardo takes the ten-year-old Gian Giacomo Caprotti da
Oreno, known as , into his care.
a giant model of the Sforza equestrian monument, known as ¥± Cavallo,
is displyed in the courtyard of the Castle of Milan.
Leonardo works on the organization of the farmlands of the dukes
of Milan near Vigevano. Preliminary studies for the Last Supper.
Leonardo begins painting the Last Supper and decorating the rooms
of the Sforza castle.
Leonardo responsible for the decoration of the Sala delle Asse in
the Castle of Milan.
Leonardo listed among the "engineers of the ducal chamber."
Louis Xll's invasion of Lombardy compels Leonardo to flee Milan;
sojourns in Vaprio and Mantua, where he executes two portraits in
charcoal of Isabelle d'Este. Moves on to Venici.
Returns to Florence.
Exhibition of the first cartoon for the and Saint Anne in Florence.
A planned trip to Turkey is cancelled. Leonardo enters the service
of Cesare Borgia, Duke of Valtellina, and takes part in the Romagna
campaign as an architect and general engineer. Inspects Cesare
Back in Florence between March and June. Competes with Michelangelo
in the commission for a wall- painting in the Signoria (Battle of Anghiari).
According to Vasari, begins the Portrait of Mona
Lisa and Leda and the Swan.
9 July, death of his father.
Leonardo abandons work on his Battle of Anghiari, adding credence
to his reputation as an artist who never finished his works.
Florence, Leonardo begins collecting notes on mathematics and physics.
In June, leaves Florence for Milan at the behest of Charles
d' Amboise, Marshal of France and brother of Georges d'Amboise,
a cardinal and influential figure of the Italian Renaissance. Executes
his second version of the of the Rocks and works on the
and Saint Anne.
The Signoria permits Leonardo to enter the service of King Louis
Xll, who appoints him his Court painter and military engineer.
Leonardo works on anatomical plates and research on mechanics.
24 September, Leonardo leaves Milan for Rome, accompanied by
Melzi, , and two servants. Enters the service of Cardinal Giuliano
de' Medici, the brother of Pope Leo X. Lives in the Belvedere,
a spacious villa put at his disposal by the pope. No major commissions
permitting him to measure himself against his two illustrious rivals, rap
Probable date of the Saint John the Baptist. Francois I enters Milan on 11 October.
Death of Giuliano de' Medici, Leonardo's patron. In autumn, he leaves
for France, taking with him the Portrait of Mona Lisa, the
and Child with Saint Anne, and Saint John the Baptist, which
are all now in the Louvre.
Leonardo is in Amboise in April. He is invited by Francois I to live
at the Castle of Cloux . He suffers from partial paralysis
of the right hand, but can still draw.
Leonardo probably contributes to staging the festivities held in may
on the occasion of the Dauphin's baptism and the wedding of Lorenzo
de' Medici to the French king's niece. Leonardo organizes festivities
in honour of Francois I at Cloux. Works on the project for
a canal connecting the Loire and rivers.
MAY 13: Raphael is documented as being absent from Urbino and
23 April, Leonardo dictates his last will and testament, and dies on
2 may. He is buried at Amboise.