Sacred Texts  Age of Reason  Index 
I. Prolegomena and General Introduction to the Book on Painting Index
  Previous  Next 
Buy this Book at

The Da Vinci Notebooks at


p. 20


Variability of the eye.1st. The pupil of the eye contracts, in proportion to the increase of light which is reflected in it. 2nd. The pupil of the eye expands in proportion to the diminution in the day light, or any other light, that is reflected in it. 3rd.  20 . The eye perceives and recognises the objects of its vision with greater intensity in proportion as the pupil is more widely dilated; and this can be proved by the case of nocturnal animals, such as cats, and certain birds--as the owl and others--in which the pupil varies in a high degree from large to small, &c, when in the dark or in the light. 4th. The eye [out of doors] in an illuminated atmosphere sees darkness behind the windows of houses which [nevertheless] are light. 5th. All colours when placed in the shade appear of an equal degree of darkness, among themselves. 6th. But all colours when placed in a full light, never vary from their true and essential hue.


20:20 : 8. The subject of this third proposition we find fully discussed in MS. G. 44a.

Next: 25.