Codex on the Flight of Birds

Codex on the Flight of Birds is a relatively short codex of circa 1505 by Leonardo da Vinci. It comprises 18 folios and measures 21 × 15 centimetres. Now held at the Biblioteca Reale in Turin, Italy, the codex begins with an examination of the flight behavior of birds and proposes mechanisms for flight by machines. Da Vinci constructed a number of these machines, and attempted to launch them from a hill near Florence. However, his efforts failed.

In the codex, Da Vinci notes for the first time that the center of gravity of a flying bird does not coincide with its center of pressure.



  • Cremante, Simona. "Leonardo Da Vinci". Giunti, 2005.
  • Crispino, Enrica; Pedretti, Carlo; Frost, Catherine. "Leonardo: Art and Science". Giunti, 2001. ISBN 8-8090-1511-8
  • Pedretti, Carlo. "A Chronology of Leonardo Da Vinci's Architectural Studies after 1500". Geneva: E. Droz, 1962.

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