The groundbreaking new book from Cambridge Scholars Publishing, released on July 26th, authenticates Leonardo da Vinci’s 1504 Globe and contains an excellent analysis of Leonardo’s circular map from South America’s 1503 coastline discovered at the British Library.
Leonardo da Vinci, already established as one of the artistic and scientific giants in world history, was also the creator of the oldest globe to depict the New World, according to a new book by the Belgian Professor Stefaan Missinne. The globe was produced in 1504, a mere 12 years after the European discovery of the New World by Christopher Columbus in 1492.
The book reaches its dramatic conclusions based on six years of interdisciplinary research. The evidence cited includes:
- A 1503 preparatory drawing illustrating the New World identified in da Vinci’s papers in the British Library. This drawing was previously thought, mistakenly, to be of the moon. International experts now agree that this drawing is the first known cartographic depiction of America by Leonardo.
- The cartography on the globe, which like Leonardo’s drawing portrays the coastline of South America, a distinctive small longitudinal width of Africa, and the absence of North and Central America which instead are covered by a vast ocean reaching to Asia.
- The presence of arsenic in a red metal droplet on the surface of the globe, which was detected using X- Ray fluorescence. In the Renaissance, only Leonardo is known to have written about adding arsenic to copper to keep it from losing its reddish lustre. A copper cast from the da Vinci globe kept at the New York Public Library, the Lenox globe, does not have the green patina characteristic of old copper exposed to the air.
- The use of chiaroscuro, pentimenti, triangular shapes, the mathematics of the scale reflecting Leonardo’s written dimension of planet earth, the intricate design of a hybrid marine monster based on Leonardo’s description on how to create such an imaginative monster and a large ship in the open sea (this itself based on the content of a manuscript from Francesco of Sienna from Leonardo’s own personal library) and a coded enigma also feature in the work…
Further to this Leonardo himself wrote in 1504: “my world globe I want returned back from my friend Giovanni Benci” and “The knowledge of past times and of the places of the earth is both an ornament and nutriment to the human mind.”
A selection of endorsements includes:
- The Head of the Historical Vatican State Archive, Dr. J. Ickx, who stated: “The Ostrich Egg Globe and its twin (i.e. the Lenox Globe at the New York Public Library) are from the hand of none other than Leonardo da Vinci.”
- The French Mona Lisa Expert, Pascal Cotte from Paris, who said: “I hereby confirm the evidence of the left-handedness of the engravings on the Ostrich Egg Globe. As Leonardo was the only left-handed artist in his workshop, I hereby endorse the hypothesis of Leonardo da Vinci’s authorship.”
- Retired University Professor from Florence, Dr. Leonardo Rombai, who said: “Professor Missinne’s discovery is, without doubt, of the greatest importance.”
The list of acknowledgements in the book contains over one hundred international experts.
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For further information on the book, including all press enquiries, contact James Brittain at Cambridge Scholars: