The Adoration of the Magi fresco by Leonardo da Vinci at the age of 27

made out of tempera from 1479 to 1481

The Uffizi Florence, Tuscany, Italy, Europe

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Located in Uffizi: Hall 15 – Leonardo

Other works by Leonardo da Vinci in The Uffizi

Other works on the subject of 'Adoration of the Magi' in the same city

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Art by artists at the same age


Infant Christ see all

Leonardo da Vinci see all

Virgin Mary see all


Vertically Halved Division see all



Leonardo da Vinci receives a commission to paint The Adoration of the Magi for the Monks of San Donato a Scopeto, which he leaves unfinished.

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Leonardo da Vinci anatomist, painter, architect, sculptor, military engineer, scientist, inventor, writer


Ludovico Sforza is empowered as the Duke of Bari.

January 10

Four French ambassadors arrived at Florence, two of whom were going to the Pope and two to the King of Naples. They declared to the Signoria here, that they were going to make peace in Italy amongst Christians, and to settle all differences, giving judgement according to reason, and protested that their king would proceed against anyone who hindered peace; if the Pope were the one to be obdurate, he would be summoned to a Council; and when peace had been made, all the powers would undertake a crusade against the Unbelievers. They left on the 16th January.

January 17

A certain hermit came here to preach and threatened many ills. He had been at Volterra, serving at a leper hospital. He was a lad of twenty-four, barefoot, with a wallet on his back; and he declared that St. John and the Angel Raphael had appeared to him. And one morning he went up on to the _ringhierra_ of the Signori to preach, but the "Eight" sent him away. And each day some incident happened. And at this time, a son of the Duke of Milan,(1) who was confined within certain boundaries in the territory of Pisa, fled from there, and went to Genoa to the Signor Roberto,(2) and joined him. > (1) This was Ludovico Sforza, called _Il Moro_, uncle to the reigning duke, and at that moment exiled. > > (2) Roberto da Sanseverino.

January 27

My brother Gostanzo returned from the Levant.

February 4

Chianti was pillaged. And now the plague had lessened considerably. God be praised!

February 8

Four galleys reached the Port of Pisa, two from the West and two from Barbary, which had joined forces. They came in great terror, for fear of the fleet of the king and the Genoese. It was considered a great piece of news.

March 9

A man who was said to be a Venetian was hung in the _Mercato Nuovo_, for having stolen some florns off a money-changer's table the evening before, in broad daylight; and he had been caught and taken to the rector,(1) and was condemned to be hung. At this time Signor Roberto made an incursion into the Pisan district with many men, and came as far as the Port of Pisa and set it on fire, but did not do it much harm; and then he advanced into the Val di Calci, and burnt the mills and took much booty, after which he retired beyond the Serchio. And in this direction the Duke of Calabria(2) penetrated as far as the Poggio Imperiale, with the design of capturing it, but he did not succeed. And meanwhile our troops advanced as far as Siena, and pillaged the country, and took a certain fort called Selvoli and held it for some time, that is to say, till the 4th April. And the plague was making now great ravages, having increased again. And we were continually raising fresh bands of infantry; and the Venetians sent us a number of soldiers, that were all despatched to the Pisan territory. And the Capitano now went into the Pisan territory, awaiting Count Carlo(3) and a large body of cavalry. > (1) The rector of the Arte del Cambio (Money-chamber's Guild). > > (2) Alfonso d'Aragona, son of Ferdinando, King of Naples. > > (3) Count Carlo da Montone, son of the famous Braccio, sent by the Venetians to aid the Florentines.

April 12

There was a skirmish outside Pisa between our Capitano and Signor Roberto, and a good number were slain. And it was said that our Capitano had no wish to vanquish the enemy, and therefore did not do his duty; this was the unanimous opinion of the people.

April 18

The plague had increased to such an extent that I went away to my villa at Dicomano with all my family; leaving my apprentices to attend to the shop. At this time Count Carlo came to Florence, and was appointed a Capitano, and two separate camps were formed, he going into the Perugian territory and defeating the papal troops, which departed utterly routed. And after this the ducal forces(1) could have been broken up; but through the fault of our Capitano, the Duke of Ferrara, and through the dissensions amongst the citizens, no action was taken, or else the enemy would certainly have been conquered. The Duke of Calabria pitched his camp before Colle. People continually deceive us, and we cannot be victorious, as God punishes us for our sins.

June 15

November 8

At midnight the alarm was rung in the Mugello, and everyone was overwhelmed with terror, wanting to rush to Florence. But the enemy came to Piancandoli, and did not enter the Mugello.

November 15

The Duke of Calabria took _Colle di Valdelsa_. He had besieged it for about seven months before he was able to take it; the mortars had been fired against it 1024 times, so that the greater part of the walls was destroyed. And now the enemy went into quarters.

November 24

A herald came with the olive-branch to announce that peace was already being negotiated.

December 6

Lorenzo de' Medici left Florence and went to the king at Naples.

December 8

Sarzana was lost.

December 23

Bernardo Bandini de' Baroncegli was captured at Constantinople, the Grand Turk having given him up. He had fled from Florence when Giuliano de' Medici was murdered, believing that his life would be safe at Constantinople. News arrived that the Duke of Calabria had taken possession of Siena, but it was not true. However, to all intents and purposes, he was master of the place, for the Sienese were helpless, having left him come in with all his troops, and he did what he chose.

December 28

Bernardo Bandini was hung at the windows of Palagio del Capitano, he being the one who was said to have slain Giuliano de' Medici in the Conspiracy of the Pazzi. Certain arrangements had been made with the sultan that he should be given up.(1) > (1) Some important letters written to Lorenzo Carducci, Florentine consul at Constantinople, on the arrest of Bandini made by order of the sultan, and the instructions given to an Antonio de' Medici sent to thank the sultan himself, and to take over the prisoner exist in the Florentine Archives of State, and form part of a collection of Oriental documents which will shortly be brought to light by the _Reale Sopridenza_ of the Tuscan Archives.
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