The Bargello, today seat of the National Museum, was the Palazzo del Podestà in Leonardo's time. His father Ser Piero exercised his profession of notary there, and had a studio opposite the building.
Leonardo himself recalls the death of his father on a folio in the Codex Arundel (272r). The brevity of the annotation and, above all, its position in the midst of calculations, geometric figures and a sketch with hydrographic measurements, have led many to note the apparent coldness with which he recorded his father's death; others, instead, have seen Leonardo's repetition of the hour of his father's death as an element betraying deep emotion: «On the 9th day of July 1504 on Wednesday at the hour of 7 died Ser Piero da Vinci, notary at the Palazzo del Podestà. My father at the hour of 7 was 80 years old, he leaves 10 sons and 2 daughters.»
In a drawing now in the Musée Bonnat at Bayonne, Leonardo represents an episode well known to the Florentines of his time. This drawing, known as "L’impiccato" (the hanged man), illustrates the execution of Bernardo di Bandino Baroncelli, one of the members of the Pazzi Conspiracy who, after the failed attempt to assassinate Lorenzo, fled to Constantinople. Captured by the Turks, who returned him to Lorenzo de’ Medici, he was executed on December 29, 1479 in the Palazzo del Podestà and "exposed" in Piazza della Signoria. Leonardo made the drawing, "diligently" noting the clothes of the condemned man as well: «Tulle cap, black satin doublet […]».