Francesco Melzi  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Francesco Melzi (c. 1491 – 1570) was an Italian painter, beloved assistant and pupil of Leonardo da Vinci.

The son of a Milanese noble family, Melzi joined the household of Leonardo da Vinci in 1506. Leonardo was in love with the youth, who described the older man's feelings for him as a "sviscerato e ardentissimo amore" (A gut-wrenching and incandescent love). Some suggest their relationship was also sexual, though others dispute this. Melzi accompanied Leonardo on trips to Rome in 1513 and to France in 1517. He proved a talented painter and worked closely with and for Leonardo. Some works which had previously been thought to be by Leonardo are today often attributed to Melzi.

Upon Leonardo's death, Melzi inherited the artistic and scientific works, manuscripts, known collectively as Leonardo's notebooks, as well as the collections of Leonardo, and would henceforth faithfully administer the estate. Back in Italy he married and fathered a son, Orazio. When he died on his estate in Vaprio d'Adda, his heirs sold the collection of Leonardo's works.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Francesco Melzi" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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