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Leonardo Da Vinci's Rebuses

 
I rebus di Leonardo da Vinci • Les rébus de Léonard de Vinci
 

Cifra figurata di Messer Leonardo

Leonardo da Vinci was one of the greatest Italian artist of the Rinascimento ('italian Renaissance'). He was also an engineer, naturalist and humanist, as well as an architect and sculptor. His artistic contributions are known worldwide (his most famous paintings are: Monna Lisa - not Mona Lisa! - and The Last Supper). But did you know that Leonardo was also a puzzle enthusiast and a big fan of puns and word games (folio 44 of his 'Codex Arundel' contains a long list of playful synonyms for "penis")? He particularly liked to invent word puzzles such as rebuses (puzzles in which a word or phrase has to be guessed from pictures or diagrams). Here below are some puzzle creations of the Maestro. If you don't know any Italian this online dictionary may be helpful.

IN; Felice (felce); Setaccio; Perla; More=
"Infelice se taccio per l'amore"
leonardo's rebus 1
leonardo's rebus 2
=Nono; Fa; TO; Mai (ramoscelli); AL; Cuna; O; Pera
"Non ho fatto mai alcuna opera"
L'amo; Re; Mi; Fa; Sol; La; ZA; Re=
"L'amore mi fa sollazzare"
leonardo's rebus 3
leonardo's rebus 4
=Col; Padella; More; MAL; Collo; CATO
"Colpa dell'amore mal collocato"
O; Pera=
"Opera"
leonardo's rebus 5
leonardo's rebus 6
=Or; CHI; Campanelle; Fiamme; DE; L'amo; Re
"Or chi campa nelle fiamme dell'amore?"

Da Vinci's song (Canzone di Leonardo)

Song performed by Ornella Vanoni, see the video.
Lyrics:
Movesi l'amante per la cosa amata
se la cosa amata è vile
l'amante si fa vile.
Quando l'amante è giunto all'amato
là si riposa
Quando il peso è posato
lì si riposa
lì si riposa...
(This lyrics is based on fragments of the Codex Trivulzianus 6 r.)

 

Related Links Share your thoughts
arrow Roman puzzles
arrow Ostomachion original texts

arrow Alcuin's puzzles
arrow Symposius riddles
arrow Heraclitus' aphorisms
arrow Fibonacci's numbers
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