(1,245 words)

Aviatics is the skill of using wings or other airfoils to stay up in the air, in other words the art of flying like a bird (Latin avis). Medieval chronicles already contain many accounts of individuals who tried to imitate avian flight. Most such “flights” from high towers ended in disaster. Stories of attempted flights with a level of detail that enhances their credibility occur in increasing numbers from the second half of the 15th century, one example being the case of Giovanni Battista Danti (ca. 1477-1517), who mad…

Cite this page
Behringer, Wolfgang, “Aviatics”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Executive editor of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy. Consulted online on 21 March 2018 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_017269>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20160321

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