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School of Athens



(adjacent to poetry)



(adjacent to justice)

Socrates having a dialogue with, from right to left, a Greek, a Jew, a Roman, and a Barbarian. The head of Socrates is based on a Hellenistic portrait of him.

Plato and Aristotle

(Plato holds a copy of his Timeaus and Aristotle holds a copy of his Ethics) The head of Plato is close to the presumed Self Portrait of Leonardo da Vinci.



Youth holds at the feet of Pythagoras a panel on which is inscribed his consonances of song. Pythagoras saw in the geometry of musical harmony a key to the order of the cosmos ("harmony of the spheres").


This figure which is probably a later addition is understood to be a portrait of Michelangelo. It comes close to the Prophet figures from the Sistine Ceiling.


The figure of Euclid is believed to be based on the likeness of the Renaissance architect Bramante. Accompanying the figures of Zoroaster (back is turned and holds a terrestrial globe) and Ptolemy (holds celestial globe) is presumed to be Raphael and either Perugino (Raphael's teacher) or Sodoma (who had started painting the ceiling of the room).