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Leonardo Depicted America: Misread as the Moon

Stefaan Missinne, Geert Verhoeven
2019 Advances in Historical Studies  
Leonardo da Vinci must have been aware that Columbus discovered new territories in the West. Until now, no material evidence had been found to substantiate this assumption. Here we show that Leonardo not only read Amerigo Vespucci's letter (derived from a painted star constellation), but that he even drew a map including the New World, a drawing which was previously interpreted as a depiction of the Moon. Finally, Leonardo engraved his notion of this new continent on an ostrich egg globe (now
more » ... ch egg globe (now known as the Da Vinci Globe) and made a copper cast of this. Both the cosmographic and cartographic clues demonstrate that Leonardo da Vinci knew about the fourth continent, to be named "America" in 1507, less than a decade after Columbus embarked upon its shores. This expansion of Leonardo's cartographic legacy comes at a time of increased interest for such multi-disciplinary insights, as the world commemorates in 2019 the 500 th anniversary of his death.
doi:10.4236/ahs.2019.84011 fatcat:2mqtdzgsgrcmvaxfrnr3msxx5y