The Notebooks of Leonardo Da Vinci — Volume 2 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 486 pages of information about The Notebooks of Leonardo Da Vinci — Volume 2.

Considerations as to the size of the sun (886-891).

886.

The sun does not move. [Footnote:  This sentence occurs incidentally among mathematical notes, and is written in unusually large letters.]

887.

PROOF THAT THE NEARER YOU ARE TO THE SOURCE OF THE SOLAR RAYS, THE
LARGER WILL THE REFLECTION OF THE SUN FROM THE SEA APPEAR TO YOU.

[Footnote:  Lines 4 and fol.  Compare Vol.  I, Nos. 130, 131.] If it is from the centre that the sun employs its radiance to intensify the power of its whole mass, it is evident that the farther its rays extend, the more widely they will be divided; and this being so, you, whose eye is near the water that mirrors the sun, see but a small portion of the rays of the sun strike the surface of the water, and reflecting the form of the sun.  But if you were near to the sun—­as would be the case when the sun is on the meridian and the sea to the westward—­you would see the sun, mirrored in the sea, of a very great size; because, as you are nearer to the sun, your eye taking in the rays nearer to the point of radiation takes more of them in, and a great splendour is the result.  And in this way it can be proved that the moon must have seas which reflect the sun, and that the parts which do not shine are land.

888.

Take the measure of the sun at the solstice in mid-June.

889.

WHY THE SUN APPEARS LARGER WHEN SETTING THAN AT NOON, WHEN IT IS
NEAR TO US.

Every object seen through a curved medium seems to be of larger size than it is.

[Footnote:  At A is written sole (the sun), at B terra (the earth).]

890.

Because the eye is small it can only see the image of the sun as of a small size.  If the eye were as large as the sun it would see the image of the sun in water of the same size as the real body of the sun, so long as the water is smooth.

891.

A METHOD OF SEEING THE SUN ECLIPSED WITHOUT PAIN TO THE EYE.

Take a piece of paper and pierce holes in it with a needle, and look at the sun through these holes.

III.

THE MOON.

On the luminousity of the moon (892-901).

892.

OF THE MOON.

As I propose to treat of the nature of the moon, it is necessary that first I should describe the perspective of mirrors, whether plane, concave or convex; and first what is meant by a luminous ray, and how it is refracted by various kinds of media; then, when a reflected ray is most powerful, whether when the angle of incidence is acute, right, or obtuse, or from a convex, a plane, or a concave surface; or from an opaque or a transparent body.  Besides this, how it is that the solar rays which fall on the waves of the sea, are seen by the eye of the same width at the angle nearest to the eye, as at the highest line of the waves on the horizon; but notwithstanding this the solar rays reflected from the waves of the sea assume the pyramidal form and consequently, at each degree of distance increase proportionally in size, although to our sight, they appear as parallel.