Reading and listening
Do you know about the world famous painting “Mona Lisa? Do you know who painted the great picture?
Do you think Leonardo da Vinci
is really a good painter? What else do you know he is famous for?
Was Leonardo da Vinci just a painter?
Read the passage and answer these
1. Why did Leonardo need to design
things for his employer when he was
such a great painter?
2. Why were Leonardo’s designs different? 3. How did painting help him invent things? 4. Which skill do you think was more important: his drawing for the inventions or his understanding of machines for his painting? Give a reason.
1. The rulers of the small Italian states needed military inventions to help in their wars with each other. They only needed paintings in times of peace. Leonardo lived at a time of great instability, so military inventions were his best way of earning money.
2. His designs were different because
he took things apart and then
improved them. So his designs were
accurate and could be built and
3. While he was studying under Verrochio, Leonardo observed and used a variety of machines, by studying and drawing the machines, Leonardo gained knowledge about their design and structure. His drawing skill enable him to produce clear drawings of his mechanical
ideas easily, many of which can still be used to create perfect working machines. the use of mechanical gears was his most interesting part and he came up with numerous
inventions based on the gear .
4. His understanding of machines for his painting was more important because by understanding how each separate machine part worked, he could improve them and combine them in different ways to improve existing machines, which lead to a lot of inventions.
One of the remarkable things about Leonardo da Vinci was his natural ability in so many subjects. Are you as clever as Leonardo? Find out by
filling in this chart:
Possible Evidence from skills Leonardo famous
Evidence from you I could
as Mona Lisa.
a. Some of his early drawings showed clearly how various engineer machine parts worked. b. In this way he began to design machines no one had ever seen before.
I sometimes look at books about different machines and try to design perfect working machines.
He learnt to his employer
I am modern
design whatever interested in
I love children had his own school with apprentices of his and enjoy own as an established making teacher friends artist did. with them.
I feel merciful for those sick
the anatomy of
doctor the human body people who by cutting it up suffer great pain.
designed many new things such as the bicycle, a helicopter inventor and an “automobile”, etc
No time spent on making inventions
Took things apart and
Maybe there will be some evidence and major in
found out how after I graduate
scientist they worked
in order to one.
certain subject in
design a better the university.
Discuss these questions in pairs.
1. How many ways was Leonardo able to
earn his living?
2. How many areas are you familiar with?
3. Which areas of knowledge are you
least happy with? Does this worry you?
How might you put this right?
Listening on Page 67
Listen to the tape and decide if you agree with the people on the tape. What do you think it was? Fill in the chart below with the ideas of the two girls and then make your own suggestions.
The girls’ suggestions 1. a roundabout
Reasons for has four
Reasons against wheels go
wheels and forwards and backwards, a floor not round
The girls’ Reasons for suggestions 2. a tent
the appearance made of metal and not cloth
3. a caravan can move, big enough to carry a family
no room to sleep in it, not easy to park at night
I think Leonardo designed an ________ early car because __________________________ the picture seems to show a ___________________________________ vehicle that can move backwards and ___________________________________ forwards, has four wheels and can take ___________________________________ people for a ride. It does not have beds or ___________________________________ room for beds, so it cannot be a caravan. ___________________________________ It is made of metal so it cannot be a tent. ___________________________________ It does not go round and round so it _____________________ cannot be a roundabout.
WHAT CAN IT BE?
Ellie smith is discussing with one of
her friends Tang Ling, what this invention by Leonardo might be.
ES: Look at this drawings! What do you think this is supposed to be? TL: I don’t know! It doesn’t say, but let’s see if we can work out what it is. ES: OK. Now let’s see. It looks a bit like a tent but has four wheels underneath.
TL: You’re right but when you look at
the second picture with the wheels
you can see that it had a floor to stand on and wheels below that. Do you think it was a roundabout for children?
ES: Good thinking. But the way that he
placed the wheels shows that it
must have been for going forwards
and backwards, not round and
round. No, I don’t think it was a
TL: Let’s look at it again. Do you think it’s made of metal?
The wheels seem to have handles
to move them.
ES: In that case it must have been
large enough for more than one
person. You would have needed
four people—one to move each
wheel. So it cannot be a tent as
that is made of cloth.
TL: Yes, I think you’re right. ES: It also seems to have something like sticks coming out of the body Do you think they are for decoration? TL: Perhaps. That is possible as we know Leonardo was an artist.
ES: Yes and if that were the case, perhaps it was for fun for the family. It could carry four people to move the wheels and then another one or two children to help. Maybe six altogether. TL: Wow! So it must have been made of metal. Nothing else could carry all that weight.
ES: True! The wheels must be made of wood or metal. TL: Do you think it’s a caravan? ES: Yes, that makes sense. It would be big enough but there doesn’t seem to be any room to sleep in it. And it wouldn’t be very easy to park for the night. So perhaps it was an early car?
TL: Well, let’s look in the guidebook. Oh no—it seems you’re not correct. ES: Gracious. So what on earth can it be? TL: Think again about Leonardo’s life. Can’t you guess?
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