Today in 1452, the birthday of Leonardo da Vinci, the painter of the Mona Lisa, namesake of a code (and a ninja turtle) and the inventor of… the resume.

It’s well known that Leonardo was interested in countless fields of study.

He was a sculptor and an architect as well as a painter.

Plus he studied science, engineering, the list goes on and on.

But according to Fast Company, he was also a pioneer in HR.

They say something he wrote in 1482 amounts to “the first personal marketing document in recorded history.”

Technically, it’s a letter da Vinci sent to the Duke of Milan, essentially saying why the royal should hire him, outlining his skillset for whatever situation the city should encounter.

For example, if an army comes to attack Milan, he writes, “I would contrive catapults, mangonels, trabocchi, and other machines of marvelous efficacy and not in common use. And in short, according to the variety of cases, I can contrive various and endless means of offense and defense.”

In more peaceful times, Leonardo says he can go back to art: “I can carry out sculpture in marble, bronze, or clay, and also I can do in painting whatever may be done, as well as any other, be he who he may.”

He closes the letter the same way that so many job applicants do in our time: he suggests that the duke meet with him in person so they can talk further.

And it worked: the Duke of Milan hired Leonardo da Vinci and kept him working for the next 17 years.

Some 10 million people visit da Vinci’s most famous work, the Mona Lisa, each year at the Louvre in Paris.

And on top of that, Britannica reports that the Mona Lisa gets fan mail and flower deliveries, which is why this iconic painting has its own mailbox.

Your move, “The Starry Night.”

Learn to write a résumé like the person who invented it—DaVinci (Fast Company)

Mona Lisa: Facts & Related Content (Britannica)

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Image via Wikicommons