Fol. 18v

Codex on the Flight of Birds This folio does not deal with flight, but it allows us to fix a sufficiently exact date for the Codex on the Flight of Birds, because Leonardo notes that on that day, 14 April 1505, a certain ‘Lorenzo’ came to ‘stay with him’. This is one of the very few personal notes of the entire Codex.
Much of the page is filled with a drawing of a course of water with dams. The swirling parts indicate an acceleration of the water, aided by conical mechanisms drawn at the bottom of the page, the energy of which was perhaps intended to be used by a mill. Leonardo also describes a system for raising tree trunks.

«1505 martedì sera addì 14 aprile venne Lorenzo a stare con me e disse di avere 17 anni
E addì 15 del detto aprile ebbi ducati 25 d'oro dal camerlengo di S. Maria Novella.»

(1505 Tuesday evening on 14 April Lorenzo came to stay with me, and said that he was 17 years old. On the 15th of that April I received 25 gold ducats from the camerlingo of Santa Maria Novella.)

«…dal monte che tiene il nome del grande uccello piglierà il volo il famoso uccello che riempirà il mondo della sua grande gloria»
(…from the mountain that takes its name from the great bird [Monte Ceceri; Cecero was an old Italian word for swan] the famous bird will take flight, filling the world with its great glory.)

NOTE. For each page of Leonardo’s Codex we provide a brief summary, with the quotation of one that page’s most significant passages edited in modern Italian, with an English translation.

translation by Kim Williams