Looking at the paintings of the early Italian Renaissance painter Pisanello just now, I was struck by how wonderfully delicate and accurate his paintings of animals are. If he had lived in a different time or created these images in a different context (one of scientific learning rather than courtly patronage) I’m convinced that Pisanello would have been a famous naturalist. Here are a few cropped images I’ve made, deriving primarily from his lovely paintings The Vision of Saint Eustace (c. 1438) and Portrait of a Princess of the House of Este (c. 1440s?).
And finally, Pisanello’s only surviving sculpted piece, a medal depicting “Innocence and a Unicorn in a Moonlit Landscape.”