Milan Cathedral

The Milan Cathedral was the inspiration for Leonardo da Vinci's interest in architecture. In 1987, he was involved in a project that called for the design of a tiburio, or lantern tower. Throughout the process, da Vinci would draw his design using a grid of squares to give it that symmetrical and balanced appearance that was common in Renaissance architecture at the time. His arcitectural style would be influenced by Vitruvius after he befriended both Bramante and di Giorgio around that time. Since then, da Vinci would continue with his endeavors by drawing countless designs in his notebook that consisted of other drawings.

Source: Isaacson, Walter. Leonardo Da Vinci. Simon & Schuster, 2017.


Latitude: 45.464097600000
Longitude: 9.191926500000

Timeline of Events Associated with Milan Cathedral

Date Event Manage

Tiburio of Milan Cathedral

circa. 1487

Architecture - da Vinci and Humanism

Leonardo da Vinci was inspired to create church drawings after Milan's authorities wanted someone to design a tower for the cathedral. Influenced by the works of both Bramante and di Giorgio, he drew numerous designs that placed emphasis not only on symmetry using geometric shapes, but on the connection between human and nature. These ideas stem from the mind of a Roman architect named Vitruvius. He is most notable for The Vitruvian Man, which states that the human, who is perfectly inscribed in a circle and a square, fits a certain ratio that universally exists in nature. da Vinci's own version of The Vitruvian Man represents those ideas but is mathematically more accurate in its depiction. His church sketches were indicative of the ideas of humanism intertwined with mathematics as the church layout resembles that of a human body, which can be inferred that the church is universally connected with nature.


Craven, Jackie. “Hidden Codes: How Geometry Shapes Architecture.” ThoughtCo, ThoughtCo, 3 July 2019,

Isaacson, Walter. Leonardo Da Vinci. Simon & Schuster, 2017.

Laurenza, Domenico. “The Vitruvian Man by Leonardo: Image and Text.” Quaderni d’italianistica, vol. 27, no. 2, Sept. 2006, pp. 37–56. EBSCOhost,