Da Vinci's Code

Professor Christopher Witcombe, Art History


Leonardo - some pointers

Leonardo da Vinci, Two studies for Mary Magdalen
Pen and brown ink, 135 x 80 mm
(Courtauld Institute of Art, Somerset House, London; Seilern Collection)

Leonardo da Vinci, pointing Thomas in the Last Supper

Leonardo da Vinci, Young woman pointing in a landscape
Brown-hue black chalk, 210 x 135 mm
(The Royal Collection, H. M. Queen Elizabeth II, Windsor Castle RL 12581)

Leonardo da Vinci, Young woman seated in a landscape and pointing at a unicorn
Pen and dark brown ink, 94 x 74 mm
(Visitors of the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, Oxford Chambers Hall Gift, Oxford, 1855 KPII 15)

"The unicorn through its lack of temperance, and because it does not know how to control itself for the delight that it has for young maidens, forgets its ferocity and wildness; and laying aside all fear it goes up to the seated maiden and goes to sleep in her lap, and in this way the hunters take it"
(Leonardo, Ms. H, Library of the Institut de France, fol. 11r)

Leonardo da Vinci, Virgin of the Rocks, detail with the pointing angel
Oil on panel, 1483-86
(Paris, Musée de Louvre)

Leonardo da Vinci, Study for the head of a girl
Silverpoint with white highlights on prepared paper, 181 x 159 mm
(Turin, Biblioteca Reale)

Leonardo da Vinci, Lady with an Ermine (Portrait of Cecilia Gallerani?)
Oil on wood, 1483-90
(Cracow, Czartoryski Museum)

"The ermine because of its moderation eats only once a day, and it allows itself to be captured by the hunters rather than take refuge in a muddy lair, in order not to stain its purity"
(Leonardo, Ms. H, Library of the Institut de France, fol. 12r)

Leonardo da Vinci, St. John the Baptist
Oil on panel, 1513-16
(Paris, Musée de Louvre)

Anonymous, after Leonardo, The Angel of the Annunciation
(Basil, Kunstmuseum)

Leonardo da Vinci, The Virgin and Child with St. Anne and the Young St. John the Baptist (The Burlington House cartoon)
(London, National Gallery of Art)

Leonardo da Vinci, St. John the Baptist in the Wilderness (Bacchus)
Oil on panel transferred to canvas, 1510-15
(Paris, Musée de Louvre)