Why objects seen at a distance appear large to the eye and in the image on the vertical plane they appear small.
I ask how far away the eye can discern a non-luminous body, as, for instance, a mountain. It will be very plainly visible if the sun is behind it; and could be seen at a greater or less distance according to the sun’s place in the sky.
[Footnote: The clue to the solution of this problem (lines 1-3) is given in lines 4-6, No. 232. Objects seen with both eyes appear solid since they are seen from two distinct points of sight separated by the distance between the eyes, but this solidity cannot be represented in a flat drawing. Compare No. 535.]
Taken from The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci edited by Jean Paul Richter, 1880.