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p. 214


Further researches (989-991).I say that the deluge could not carry objects, native to the sea, up to the mountains, unless the sea had already increased so as to create inundations as high up as those places; and this increase could not have occurred because it would cause a vacuum; and if you were to say that the air would rush in there, we have already concluded that what is heavy cannot remain above what is light, whence of necessity we must conclude that this deluge was caused by rain water, so that all these waters ran to the sea, and the sea did not run up the mountains; and as they ran to the sea, they thrust the shells from the shore of the sea and did not draw them to wards themselves. And if you were then to say that the sea, raised by the rain water, had carried these shells to such a height, we have already said that things heavier than water cannot rise upon it, but remain at the bottom of it, and do not move unless by the impact of the waves. And if you were to say that the waves had carried them to such high spots, we have proved that the waves in a great depth move in a contrary direction at the bottom to the motion at the top, and this is shown by the turbidity of the sea from the earth washed down near its shores. Anything which is lighter than the water moves with the waves, and is left on the highest level of the highest margin of the waves. Anything which is heavier than the water moves, suspended in it, between the surface and the bottom; and from these two conclusions, which will be amply proved in their place, we infer that the waves of the surface cannot convey shells, since they are heavier than water.

If the deluge had to carry shells three hundred and four hundred miles from the sea, it would have carried them mixed with various other natural objects heaped together; and we see at such distances oysters all together, and sea-snails, and cuttlefish, and all the other shells which congregate together,

p. 215

all to be found together and dead; and the solitary shells are found wide apart from each other, as we may see them on sea-shores every day. And if we find oysters of very large shells joined together and among them very many which still have the covering attached, indicating that they were left here by the sea, and still living when the strait of Gibraltar was cut through; there are to be seen, in the mountains of Parma and Piacenza, a multitude of shells and corals, full of holes, and still sticking to the rocks there. When I was making the great horse for Milan, a large sack full was brought to me in my workshop by certain peasants; these were found in that place and among them were many preserved in their first freshness.

Under ground, and under the foundations of buildings, timbers are found of wrought beams and already black. Such were found in my time in those diggings at Castel Fiorentino. And these had been in that deep place before the sand carried by the Arno into the sea, then covering the plain, had heen raised to such a height; and before the plains of Casentino had been so much lowered, by the earth being constantly carried down from them.


And if you were to say that these shells were created, and were continually being created in such places by the nature of the spot, and of the heavens which might have some influence there, such an opinion cannot exist in a brain of much reason; because here are the years of their growth, numbered on their shells, and there are large and small ones to be seen which could not have grown without food, and could not have fed without motion--and here they could not move  528


215:527 : These lines are written in the margin.

215:528 : These lines are written in the margin.

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