January 8 - The Mona Lisa arrives in the North America

On this day in 1963, the worlds most famous painting arrived in North America for the first time. The Mona Lisa invaded the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. amidst flocks of people who were dying to see worlds most enigmatic smile. The Mona Lisa was originally created in the 16th century, so one has to wonder what took so long for the painting to be showcased in North America (well over 400 years).

Given how long ago the painting was created, there is vast array of speculation as to the origins and meanings of the artwork. The woman in the picture is widely believed to be Lisa del Giocando, who was was a member of the Gherardini family of Florence and Tuscany in Italy. Lisa's husband, Francesco, is believed to have commissioned Leonardo Da Vinci to paint the portrait of his wife.

In December of 2010, it was discovered that the Mona Lisa has tiny letters and numbers in her eyes which are only apparent when looking through a magnifying glass. The significance and meaning of the numbers and letters are yet to be determined.

The Mona Lisa is currently owned by the Government of France and is on display on at the Musée du Louvre.


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