Chronology

15th April 1452

Leonardo da Vinci was born at Anchian near Vinci, Tuscany. He was the illegitimate son of Ser Piero di Antonio, a notary, and peasant woman Catarina.

1453

The fall of Constantinople ends the Eastern Empire.

1457

A tax return made by Leonardo's grandfather showed the child to be living with his father who was now married to Albierra di Giovanni Amadori.

1468

Leonardo's grandfather dies at the age of ninety-six.

1469

Starts work as an apprentice at the workshop of Verrocchio. Another tax return shows, that at the age of seventeen, Leonardo is still living with his father.

1470

Madonna with the Pomegranate.

1472

Admitted to the Company of Painters. An entry in the registry shows Leonardo to have been in debt for his fees and an 'offering' on St. Luke's day -- 18th October 1472. Assists with Verrocchio's Baptism of Christ. The Annunciation (Uffizi Gallery), Genevri de' Benci.

5th August 1473

This was the date written by Leonardo (now aged twenty-one) on a landscape drawing which survives today.

1475-1480

Benois Madonna. Madonna with the Carnation

8th April 1476

An anonymous charge was made against seventeen-year-old Jacopo Saltarelli for homosexuality. Leonardo is named as one of his lovers.

7th June 1476

A second accusation of homosexuality was made against Leonardo. The charge was dismissed.

1478

The Annunciation (Louvre).

29th December 1479

Bernardo di Bandini Baroncelli, who murdered Lorenzo the Magnificant's brother Giuliano in Florence's cathedral, was hanged and a drawing of this, together with notes on the murderer's clothes, is executed by Leonardo.

March 1480

Leonardo received a commission from the monastery of S. Donato a Scopeto for an Adoration of the Magi which was to be completed within thirty months.Litta Madonna, Madonna with the Cat.

1481

Offers his services in a letter to Ludovico Sforza, ruler of Milan.

1482

Moves to Milan to enter the service of Ludovico 'the Moor'who was looking for an engineer, an artist and a musician rolled into one. He left his Adoration of the Magi unfinished. Lady with the Ermine, Portrait of a Musician, St. Jerome.

1483

Begins work on The Virgin of the Rocks, now in the Louvre. Raphael was born at Urbino.

1484-1489

In addition to completing various commissions, Leonardo broadens the scope of his work on architecture (plans for a stables and a domed church), military engineering, flying machines and war machines.

1487

Starts his work on anatomy.

1490

Works on stage design for the pageant Il Paradiso by Bernardo Ballincioni.

1492

Leonardo visits Rome. Columbus's first visit to the New World.

1493

Completes clay model of The Great Horse for Ludvovico Sforza, Duke of Milan.

1495-1497

The Last Supper, La Belle Ferronniere, Portrait of a Young Woman, Sala delle Asse.

1499

The French invade Italy. Leonardo flees from Milan.

1500

Travels to Venice and Florence.

1501

Madonna of the Yarnwinder.

1502

Employed as military engineer to Cesare Borgia.

1503

The Battle of Anghiari commissioned. Mona Lisa begun.

1504

Leda and the Swan.

1505

Studies bird flight and geometry.

1506

Goes to Milan at invitation of the French King Louis XII. Virgin of the Rocks, National Gallery, London

1507

Returns to Florence for a visit. Possibly starts work on Virgin and Child with St. Anne.

1508

Goes back to Milan for anatomical and other research.

1509

Leonardo draws maps and geological surveys of Lombardy and Lake Isea. Starts St. John the Baptist.

1512

The French are defeated and driven from Milan. Michelangelo completes Sistine ceiling.

1513

Leonardo leaves Milan and works for Giuliano de' Medici in Rome. Finishes Salvator Mundi.

1515

The French recapture Milan.

1516

Moves to France, to work for Francois I. He is still able to draw although his right hand is partially paralysed due to a stroke.

23rd April 1519

Draws up his last will and testament.

2nd May 1519

Leonardo dies at the Castle of Cloux near Amboise, France and is buried in the Church of St Florentine, but his remains are scattered during the Wars of Religion.