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He didn't actually complete very much while he was there, though (this was a recurring problem for him which only got worse in later life) -- his contribution over sixteen years was a couple of paintings [including, it must be said, the famous Last Supper, which would rapidly deteriorate after completion] and assistance with various pageants.

His one attempt at something lasting and challenging, a giant bronze statue of his employer's father on a horse, was delayed many times, lying unfinished for years, and finally put to rest by the French invasion. The seventy tons of bronze set aside for it were appropriated for cannons, and the clay model was used as target practice by the victorious French.




Had the Duke administered the 1% HR personality test it would surely weed out this Da Vinci guy.


Reference for those who haven't seen it: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=6288763


LOL! Well done indeed! :)


An actually good joke cross-referencing a previous popular HN article -- well done my friend, well done.


Yet despite all his projects he left to rot he often wrote ideas down that others implemented with his instructions. Ball bearings, the water turbine powered mill, a wind-up "self propelled" cart (to carry ammo during war)... and then posthumously the parachute, scuba diving gear, the tank and many other things.

The guy had professional ADD but despite this was one of the best artist and engineer of his time.


Wikipedia lists lots of activities for the time spent in Milan: several paintings, frescoes in the ducal castle, work on military and hydraulic projects, etc.

Plus, the Last Supper is a huge fresco, not just "a painting", which from concept to execution took several years.


I thought he also built the canals in and around Milan. Most of them have been fileed, but the naviglio near 24 maggio still stands.


I hadn't heard of this. This page: http://www.museoscienza.org/english/leonardo/navigli/ seems to sum up the matter.

He didn't build the canals, but he did make several observations and proposals for improvements which were taken up by other engineers after his death. These attempts were riddled with problems, though, and the work eventually terminated (I inferred unsuccessfully).


So lying on your CV was not unheard back then.


I think if you're going to include the Last Supper as a caveat to not producing much in Milan, you should also include the two Madonna of the Rocks paintings, which have been regarded as some of Da Vinci's most technically proficient paintings.


Yeah. What a joke.




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