book written by leonardo vincio which speaks of the sun of the Moon/of the flow of water, of points and of motion
[The cover sheet following number 36 verso, the last of the manuscript, has repairs along the upper margin and along the seam. On the recto is the following note, not in Leonardo’s hand, but almost certainly written by Melzi]:
Charts [n.]° thirty-six.
[On the verso of this antique cover, in the lower right hand corner, the number] 40 [and in the upper half, the number] 49. [Neither of them is in Leonardo’s hand. Lastly, three blank cover pages]. Each sheet of the Codex is numbered (not in Leonardo’s hand) on the recto; except for the first where the number has probably been obliterated. On sheet 24 recto the second figure is not clear. Sheet 30 presents an unlucky attempt at mirrored numbering.
The thirty-six numbered sheets are, in actual fact, composed of eighteen folios of four pages each, called “papers” by Leonardo in this manuscript. The eighteen “papers” so defined, are arranged on top of one another and inserted one into the other (with a single seam holding them all together). Considering them loosely, we are led to believe that the order given to them by Leonardo started from the centre of the volume and continued towards the outer sheets and not vice versa. Luckily for us Leonardo has left us some progressive numeric recapitulations of the cases contained in this manuscript, the first of them on sheet 12 r. “In queste 7 carte è casi 657 d’acque e di sua fondi”)(In these 7 papers are 657 cases of water and its depths), the second on sheet 26 v. “In queste 8 carte è 730 conclusioni dacque” (In these 8 papers are 730 conclusions on water), the third on sheet 9 r. (“carte 10 e conclusionj 853”) [10 papers and 853 conclusions] and the last on sheet 31 r. (“900.5 [905] conclusioni”) [905 conclusions]. Now if, starting from the central pages of the volume, we add up the number of cases which Leonardo gives the partial totals of for each page (Leonardo’s calculation of which cannot always be explained), we find, for sheets from 18-19 to 12-25 (“7 papers”) a total of 655 cases, which is not that different from the number noted by Leonardo (657), who made probably a slight error of calculation; for sheets from 18-19 to’ 11-26 (“8 papers”) a total of 728, or exactly 730 if one starts off from Leonardo’s previous total (657) and one adds the 73 cases contained in the four pages (11 r. and v., 26 r. and v.) of the eighth “paper”; for sheets from 18-19 to 9-28 (“10 papers”) a total of 846 (against Leonardo’s 853, who may by chance have counted the 7 cases of sheet 9r. twice); and finally, for sheets from 18-19 to 7-30 and 31 r. (12 “papers” and a page of the 13th “paper”), a total of 903, or exactly 905, if one starts counting from number 657, the number noted by Leonardo for the number of cases contained in sheets from 18-19 to 12-25. Now, accepting that the slight differences may be accounted for by the errors of calculation mentioned as possible, and having seen that these errors are not corrected by arranging the sheets differently, we have proof here that the original structure of the manuscript