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Leonardo da Vinci (1452 - 1519)  Ginevra de' Benci  Oil on wood, circa 1476  38.8 cm × 36.7 cm (15.3 in × 14.4 in)  National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., USA
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Title: Ginevra de Benci
Description:
Leonardo da Vinci (1452 - 1519)
Ginevra de' Benci
Oil on wood, circa 1476
38.8 cm × 36.7 cm (15.3 in × 14.4 in)
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., USA

Ginevra de' Benci (Born 1457) was a lady of the aristocratic class in 15th century Florence, admired for her intelligence by Florentine contemporaries. She is the subject of one of only about 17 existing paintings attributed to Leonardo da Vinci. The oil-on-wood portrait was permanently acquired by the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., USA, in 1967 for US$5 million paid to the Princely House of Liechtenstein, a record price at the time. This portrait is currently the only painting by Leonardo in the Americas.

It is known three written sources that Leonardo painted a portrait of Ginevra de' Benci in 1474 in commemoration of her marriage to Luigi Niccolini. The painting's imagery and the text on the reverse of the panel support this the identification of this picture. Directly behind the young lady in the portrait is a juniper tree. The reverse of the portrait is decorated with a juniper sprig encircled by a wreath of laurel and palm and is memorialized by the phrase VIRTUTEM FORMA DECORAT ("Beauty adorns Virtue"). The Italian word for juniper is "ginepro", which suggests that the juniper motif has been used here be a symbolic pun on Ginevra's name. Fittingly, juniper was also a Renaissance symbol for chastity.
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Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci (1452 - 1519)  La belle ferronnière  Oil on wood, 1490-1496  62 cm × 44 cm (24 in × 17 in)  Musée du Louvre, Paris, FranceLeonardo da Vinci (1452 - 1519)  Ginevra de' Benci  Oil on wood, circa 1476  38.8 cm × 36.7 cm (15.3 in × 14.4 in)  National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., USALeonardo di ser Piero da Vinci (1452 - 1519)  The Madonna of the Carnation  Oil on panel, 1478–1480  62 cm × 47.5 cm (24 in × 19 in)  Alte Pinakothek, Munich, Germany
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