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Leonardo da Vinci (Vinci 1452-Amboise 1519)

Recto: The muscles of the upper spine. Verso: The muscles of the upper spine c.1510-11

RCIN 919015

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The page shows five stages of dissection from superficial (upper right) to deep (lower left). This is a complex and intricately layered region, and Leonardo has exaggerated the thickness and distinctness of the muscle bodies for clarity. Conversely, at lower right is a ‘thread diagram’, in which every muscle is reduced to a thread along its central line of force, to allow the entire three-dimensional system to be captured in a single drawing.