So, da Vinci 'invented the first bike'?....wrong, say the Chinese, it was us
Is a box on two wheels a bicycle? Chinese academic thinks so..
Yesterday we had the 'did he, didn't he?' debate about a replica bicycle on display in Manchester that was purportedly designed by Leonardo da Vinci (or not, as the case may be)
Today, courtesy of the Metro newspaper, we have a chap from China who appears to have discovered plans for a bicycle which, if true, pre-date Leonardo's 'creation' by a good 1,000 years.
Is it true, or isn't it? Have a look at this picture and see what you think...Chinese academic Xu Quan Long seems to be convinced, and claims to have stumbled across the discovery while researching the works of Chinese inventor Lu Ban, who was born more than 2,500 years ago.
Lu is credited with inventing devastating military weapons like a counterweighted 'cloud ladder' for storming castle defences, and a 'wooden bird' that could supposedly glide for three days without landing.
Xu now wants to challenge the accepted history of the bike (which, by all accounts, began in the early 19th century), and is asking Chinese government officials to recognise Lu Ban as the cycle's true inventor.
Earlier this week, a bike allegedly sketched out by da Vinci went on display at the Manchester Museum of Science and Technology.