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LEONARDO DA VINCI - Exploding mountain

Royal Collection (RLW), 12380r; P 59r

This drawing, with eight others, forms what is known as the "deluge series" laden with allegorical and symbolic references that have not yet been fully elucidated. The picture vividly illustrates Leonardo's passionate interest in the turbulent motions of natural elements - not only water, but also air, wind, and fire. This pursuit loomed large in his hydrodynamic investigations, especially toward the end of his life.

Even here, Leonardo sought to describe not so much the effects of Nature's destructive force as its obedience to the precise and necessary mechanical movements that govern the macrocosm and the microcosm.





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