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Da Vinci and The Code He Lived By
Da Vinci & the Code He Lived By
Re-visit the life, accomplishments, and vision of Leonardo da Vinci
Narrated by Sam Mercurio

DA VINCI & THE CODE HE LIVED BY is a series of highlights that show the fruits of a stunningly advanced mind at work far ahead of its time. Among the major points of da Vinci's life explored in this special presentation:

  • A re-creation of the brutal Easter Sunday attack on the Medici family in a Florence Cathedral, which ultimately led to war in Florence and gave rise to da Vinci's fascination with designing advanced military equipment; he would eventually design scuba suits for underwater warfare and sketch tanks designs that were used in World War I.

  • The Adoration of the Magi, the first in a string of unfinished masterworks which led to lawsuits, a questionable reputation, and ultimately being passed over for the job of decorating the Sistine Chapel.

  • Da Vinci's seventeen-year sojourn to Milan, during which he began keeping his famous notebooks, which carry the bulk of his legacy and reached 15,000 pages by the time he died; in Milan, he also painted the 29-foot mural "The Last Supper" and was commissioned to create 24-foot statue of the father of the Duke of Milan on a horse, another of his great unfinished works.

  • His bitter jealousy toward Michelangelo, who had taken over as the preeminent artist in Florence during da Vinci's time away.

  • Finally finding acceptance as a military man under the brutal Cesare Borgia, only to later denounce the horrors of war when Borgia had a friend of his executed.

  • His two obsessions late in life: flight and death. He created fixed-wing flying machines that closely resembled those that would come centuries later and performed secret autopsies in hospital basements, determining causes of death and developing the first three-dimensional charts of the human anatomy.

  • His most famous work, the Mona Lisa, which he worked on until the day he died but never finished, never leaving a clue as to who the mysterious woman was.

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    The History Channel DVD:
    Da Vinci &
    the Code He Lived By