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Thread: The Razor - by Leonardo da Vinci

  1. #1
    Preserver of old grinding methods hatzicho's Avatar
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    Default The Razor - by Leonardo da Vinci

    Leonardo da Vinci was an universal genius, maybe the greatest of all times.
    Not so well known is that he was also a poet……. (and for sure a razor user)

    A Fable

    One fine day, when the razor came out of its handle which served as ist sheat, and lay down by the window, it saw the sun reflecting in its body.
    It felt a tremendous pride and splendour within itself and, thinking of its craft, it said to itself: "I never want to go back to the place from which I came! May the gods prevent my glorious beauty from being so degraded!
    What madness to shave the soapy beards of stupid peasants - what servant's work! Is this beautiful body made for this? Oh, by God, no! I will hide myself hidden in the scales and spend my life there in quiet peace."

    And having thus remained hidden for some months, one day it came out into the air, and issuing from his sheath, saw himself turned to the similitude of a rusty saw while his surface no longer reflected the resplendent sun.
    In vain was now the remorse and useless the lamentation. " Oh! How far better it would have been to practise my keen, now spoiled edge at the barber's! Where is that splendid surface? It has been consumed by this vexatious and unsightly rust.”

    Lesson:
    It will be much the same for those who indulge in idleness instead of working. Like the razor, they will lose their keen edge, and the rust of idleness and ignorance will corrupt their form. Verily, he who rests, rusts!


    To be found in „The notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci“


    Reading those strophes, you may surely believe - his razor must have laid opened on the window sill, the sun shining through the window, reflecting on the blade and inspired Leonardo in writing these fabel.

    Have a nice Sunday and a pleasant shave!
    Peter

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    Moderator rolodave's Avatar
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    Very wonderful post!
    If you don't care where you are, you are not lost.

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    Senior Member Johntoad57's Avatar
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    Alas, it is but a fable!
    sharptonn likes this.
    Semper Fi !

    John

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    Razor Vulture sharptonn's Avatar
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    An old version of the universal truth. Use it or lose it!
    How many have hoarded the resplendent razors of the past to one day discover scale-rot and horrid rust.
    Were it used and out in the air being frequently cleaned, It would still look great and could be shared with all.
    We should all get out more often, I suppose.

    Sigh......
    rolodave, BobH, Grazor and 3 others like this.

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    Senior Member Brontosaurus's Avatar
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    Always great to have remarks like this from the past. Just wondering, is there a portrait of Leonardo in which he is depicted as shaven? Apart from the Mona Lisa as sometimes alleged?*

    *If one buys into the legend that the Mona Lisa is a self-portrait of sorts.
    rolodave, Grazor and hatzicho like this.
    Striving to be brief, I become obscure. --Horace

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    Preserver of old grinding methods hatzicho's Avatar
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    Well you are right,
    all available pictures of Leonardo in the net portrait an old, wise man with a huge beard. But around 1490, when Da Vinci was 42 years old, beards had not been very common. A shaved face was the standard and an expression of style and scholarship.
    Here you can find an attempt of a forensic reconstruction of da Vinci's countenance at the age of 40. Unfortunately the text is only german language:

    https://www.sueddeutsche.de/wissen/l...rait-1.4405793


    Regards Peter

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    Truth is weirder than any fiction.. Grazor's Avatar
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    Google did a good job of translating that.
    Interesting that men were well groomed that long ago, wonder how the shave was..
    Into this house we're born, into this world we're thrown ~ Jim Morrison

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    Truth is weirder than any fiction.. Grazor's Avatar
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    Pretty sure he is related to Emerson, Lake and Palmer..

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    sharptonn, rolodave and BobH like this.
    Into this house we're born, into this world we're thrown ~ Jim Morrison

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    Senior Member Brontosaurus's Avatar
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    Since coming across this thread, I've done a little bit of searching on the appearance of Leonardo as a young man, shaven or not, and come across the following link, which may be of interest as there two images alleged to be of LdV that depict him as shaven at around 1490 and prior to 1490. Of course it is one man's opinion, rather than a general consensus...

    https://www.ted.com/talks/siegfried_...ce_of_leonardo
    Last edited by Brontosaurus; 09-15-2021 at 09:57 AM.
    rolodave, hatzicho and STF like this.
    Striving to be brief, I become obscure. --Horace

  12. #10
    Preserver of old grinding methods hatzicho's Avatar
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    Well yes - we don't know exactly if well shaved faces were really that common in the late middle ages.
    But looking at other VIP's from that time, most of them appear be very concerned about their appearances. Take for example Christoph Columbus who lived in nearly the same timeframe. Nearly all portraits show him very well shaved.
    I don't think the common people were that vain, but those who were - or wanted to be Someone surely did.

    Regards Peter

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