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Although nature commences with reason and ends in experience it is necessary for us to do the opposite, that is to commence with experience and from this to proceed to investigate the reason.

Leonardo da Vinci

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Hippolyte Taine wrote in 1866: "There may not be in the world an example of another genius so universal so incapable of fulfilment so full of yearning for the infinite so naturally refined so far ahead of his own century and the following centuries. Leonardo is revered for his technological ingenuity. There are compositions for paintings studies of details and drapery studies of faces and emotions of animals babies dissections plant studies rock formations whirlpools war machines helicopters and architecture.

He conceptualised a helicopter a tank concentrated solar power a calculator and the double hull and he outlined a rudimentary theory of plate tectonics. Leonardo is revered for his technological ingenuity. Among his works the Mona Lisa is the most famous and most parodied portrait and The Last Supper the most reproduced religious painting of all time with their fame approached only by Michelangelo's The Creation of Adam.

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