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Is Leonardo Da Vinci the Forefather of the Animal Rights Movement?

Completely ahead of his time, he asserted that humans are animals, too, without any special God-given rights to deny the autonomy of another being.

ZACHARY TOLIVER: ‘Leonardo da Vinci was an Italian Renaissance polymath, known just as much for his extraordinary artwork as for his scientific genius—but what many folks don’t know about this Renaissance man is that he’s one of history’s first-ever animal rights advocates, taking a stand against animals exploited for food, clothing and entertainment. Evidence shows that da Vinci’s compassion for animals was yet another way in which he stood out among his 16th century peers.

Completely ahead of his time, he asserted that humans are animals, too, without any special God-given rights to deny the autonomy of another being. On numerous occasions in his writings, da Vinci condemned humanity’s warped lack of morality toward other animals—including by doing such things as stealing their babies and killing them for food…

Jean Paul Richter—a German art historian and the first person ever to translate da Vinci’s personal writings—wrote, “We are led to believe that Leonardo himself was a vegetarian”… Historians note that he preferred to dress in linen, rather than wearing dead animals, and viewed some tools made from animals as grotesque’. SOURCE…

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