Leonardo da Vinci was born on April 15, 1452, in the Tuscan town of Vinci. His father was a notary, Piero da Vinci, and his mother was a peasant woman named Caterina. As a bastard child, he was not entitled to use a family name, so he adopted “da Vinci” as a surname meaning “of Vinci”. His first mentor was Andrea del Verrocchio, a renowned painter. He began his career at the age of fifteen as an apprentice in Verrocchio’s studio. Although many of Leonardo da Vinci’s works have been lost, primarily due to the destructive nature of time, several of his most famous paintings remain intact today. These include La Joconde (The Mona Lisa), Le Repas de la Cène (The Last Supper), and L’Homme de Vitruve (The Vitruvian Man). Da Vinci was also a prolific inventor who came up with many designs for new machines, including the helicopter, tank, and calculator. Da Vinci died on May 2nd 1519 at the age of 67 and was buried in the Chapel of Saint-Hubert in Château d’Amboise in France.