A passionate reader of history, Leonardo possessed Livy’s History of Rome, the Bible, and other compilations of universal history such as the Cronica (Chronicle) by Iacopo Foresti.
Titus Livius Deche istoriate
Venezia, Giovanni Rosso for Lucantonio Giunta, 1493
Florence, Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale, Palatino D.7.3.13, f. a1r
Leonardo’s lists of books record the presence of the Histories of Titus Livius, in three separate volumes corresponding to the three decades. They probably referred to the Venetian edition of the translation into the vernacular, with a rich set of images. For Leonardo, the illustrations that represent battles are noteworthy (as in the title page for the first decade).