The story of the Leonardo Da Vinci’s greatest art Vitruvian Man

We often see a four-armed and four-legged man in various biological books. If we extend our arms and measure the length of one arm to another arm it will be the same length as our whole body. Who invented this theory? Where is the origin of this theory? Let’s know the story of Leonardo Da Vinci’s greatest art Vitruvian Man.

We all know Leonardo Da Vinci for his famous art Mona Lisa and The Last Supper. Basically, Leonardo Da Vinci is not only an artist but also a sculptor, architect, mathematician, zoologist, botanist, paleontologist, geologist, literary expert, map expert, astronomer, physicist, and etc. The Vitruvian man is also one of his great works. Leonardo didn’t know that this art will be one of his great art. But later then this art becomes very famous among the people and it is now stored in the Gallerie dell’Accademia in Venice. Though this art was illustrated by Leonardo Da Vinci the concept came from Marcus Vitruvius Pollio’s book “De architectura “. Basically, this book is based on architecture but this book also explores the geometrical concept of the human body which inspired Leonardo Da Vinci in anatomy. In this article, we will know about the concepts of the “Vitruvian Man” drawings.

What is the Vitruvian Man?

The story of the Leonardo Da Vinci's greatest art Vitruvian Man

Vitruvian Man is a drawing drawn by the famous artist Leonardo Da Vinci. This art is also known as “The proportions of the human body according to Vitruvius”. Since this art refers to the proportion of the human body. In 1492 Leonardo Da Vinci drew this art with the render in pen, ink, and metal point on paper. This art is idealized of a nude man standing with a square and a circle at a time. Parallel hands and legs indicate the square proportion.  outspread hands and legs define the proportion of the circle.

Who is Vitruvius?:

Marcus Vitruvius Pollio was a Roman author, architect, civil and military engineer. He is commonly known as Vitruvius. Vitruvius discovered the idea that all buildings should have three attributes. These are strength, utility, and beauty. Vitruvius become popular after publishing his “Da architectura” book. This book was translated into various languages. The purpose of this book is so important that it has been reciting from Renaissance to modern architecture engineer. The main concept of this book was temple construction. But in the discussion of the construction of the temple, Marcus Pollio Vitruvius invented this extraordinary concept of the human body. At the very beginning of the third book (De Architectura) on the third page of the first chapter, Marcus Pollio Vitruvius describes the relationship between the balance proportion of architecture and the human body.

What is the meaning of perfect proportions?:

On the backside of this art, Leonardo Da Vinci has written six proportions about the human body. At first, Leonardo Da Vinci notes that according to Marcus Vitruvius Pollio, these six measurements of the ideal body:

1- Four Fingers equal to one palm.
2- Four palms are equal to one foot.
3- Six palms make one cubit.
4- Four cubits are equal to a man’s height.
5- Four cubits equal to one pace.
6- 24 palms equal to one man.

The first set of notes also describes: “If any human body opens its legs so much as to decrease its height 1/14. If you raise your arms till your middle fingers touch the level of the top of your head you must come to know that the center of the outspread limbs will be in the navel and the space between the legs will be an equilateral triangle. Your outspread arms are equal to your length.”

Description of the body as fractions:

In the second block of text, the artist describes the model body as fractions.

  • If the arms are extended on both sides, the height of the top of one hand from the other hand is equal to the height of the human body.
  • The distance from the elbow to the tip of the hand is 1/4 of the height. (Put your elbows tip on your heads upperside and measure yourself till the bottom, you will get the results.)
  • The penis is located at about half the height of the human body.
  • The distance from the tip of the head to the bottom of the chin is 1/6th of the height of a human body.
  • The distance from the top of the chest to the tip of the head is 1/6th of the height.
  • The distance from the top of the chest to the base of the hair is 1/6 of the height.
  • The shoulder size is 1/4 of the height.
  • The distance from the chest to the tip of the head is 1/4 of the height.
  • The distance from the elbow to the armpit is 1/6 of the height.
  • The distance from the elbow to the tip of the finger is 1 / 4th of the height.
  • The distance from the finger to the wrist is 1 in 10 of the height.
  • Legs, 1 / 6th of the height of the human body.
  • The distance from the soles of the feet to below the knees is 1 / 4th of the height.
  • The distance from below the knee to the base of the penis is 1 / 4th of the height