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One was of a kite coming to his cradle and opening his mouth with its tail; he regarded this as an omen of his writing on the subject.Vasari, the 16th-century biographer of Renaissance painters, tells a story of Leonardo as a very young man: A local peasant made himself a round shield and requested that Ser Piero have it painted for him.He was commissioned to paint the Virgin of the Rocks for the Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception and The Last Supper for the monastery of Santa Maria delle Grazie.Leonardo was employed on many other projects for Sforza, including the preparation of floats and pageants for special occasions, designs for a dome for Milan Cathedral, and a model for a huge equestrian monument to Ludovico's predecessor Francesco Sforza.He created this map in conjunction with his other project of constructing a dam from the sea to Florence, in order to allow a supply of water to sustain the canal during all seasons.
Later in the year, Leonardo produced another map for his patron, one of Chiana Valley, Tuscany, so as to give his patron a better overlay of the land and greater strategic position.
identified as Caterina Buti del Vacca and more recently as Caterina di Meo Lippi by historian Martin Kemp.
There have been many theories regarding Leonardo's mother's identity, including that she was a slave of foreign origin or an impoverished local youth. In 1468, when Leonardo was 16, his father married again to 20-year-old Francesca Lanfredini, who also died without children.
Relatively few of his designs were constructed or even feasible during his lifetime, as the modern scientific approaches to metallurgy and engineering were only in their infancy during the Renaissance.
Some of his smaller inventions, however, entered the world of manufacturing unheralded, such as an automated bobbin winder and a machine for testing the tensile strength of wire.