Q:

Why does Mona Lisa have no eyebrows?

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Quick Answer

It is thought that Mona Lisa has no eyebrows because it was not fashionable to have them during the Renaissance period. However, a scientific analysis of the Mona Lisa has found that Leonardo da Vinci may have given her eyebrows.

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Full Answer

One theory behind Mona Lisa's lack of eyebrows is that it was not fashionable to have them during the Renaissance period. Women would shave them off, and so Mona Lisa reflects the fashions of the time. However, scientists who zoomed in on the image found that there is a single brushstroke in the eyebrow region. This suggests that da Vinci did give her eyebrows, but that they faded over time.

The Mona Lisa is one of da Vinci's most famous images, and it was one of the earliest Italian paintings featuring the sitter at half length. Its home is the Louvre gallery in Paris, France. Some mysteries surrounding the painting include:

  • Experts are not sure whether da Vinci painted it in 1502 or 1503.
  • While some see the dark mass around her head as her hair, others believe it may be a mourning veil. In addition, sometimes women wore veils during the Renaissance period as a mark of virtue.
  • As her clothing is unremarkable, she may not have held aristocratic status.
  • Mona Lisa's left finger remained unfinished.
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