Where Da Vinci lived

23 02 2012

Da Vinci spent his last few years in the picturesque town of Amboise, where he was provided with a house and gardens by his patron. This property is now preserved as a tourist attraction providing interesting insights into the many and varied inventions of Da Vinci – and a copy of the Mona Lisa!

The house is set in a large well-kept gardens. While the house itself is furnished much as Da Vinci would have known it, the basement area is full of replicas of some of his inventions – some which were not made in his day, but built from his drawings. Notably a large number of these are weapons of some sort – more accurate long-range cannons, machine gun, etc. Presumably this was at least in part due to who his funders and patrons were at the time, and the type of inventions they required of him.

The gardens feature a number of large working models of other inventions which are sturdy enough for children to play and experiment with, as well as some posters of his diagrams of anatomy.

Da Vinci was trained or self-taught in many areas of endeavour – anatomy, botany, engineering, art, geometry. In an era where we are encouraged to specialise in one area of study from mid-secondary school, he is a salient lesson in following your interests, and the intersection of many fields of endeavour.

screw-based helicopter

replica tank made up as a children's roundabout

screw pump for raising water

wheel for lifting heavy objects

poster displays of Da Vinci's anatomical drawings

two layered bridge to combat the plague (waste went across lower level, people on upper level)

working kitchen garden

Want more photos of France? Here are a few more….
Arrival in Paris
Caves of Lascaux
Notre Dame
French menus
Standing Stones of Carnac
Les Grottos en France
The Louvre
Eiffel Tower (Tour Eiffel)
Streets of Paris
Arc de Triomphe
The troglodytes of Maison Fort de Reignac
Fontainebleau – Versailles without the queues
La Seine
Theme Parks, French Style