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THE MONA LISA IS arguably(affixation) the worlds most famous(affixation) painting.

Begun sometime around 1502 and worked upon for four years by the Italian(affixation)
genius(latin-borrowing) Leonardo da Vinci, today the painting(conversion) is
instantly(affixation) recognizable(affixation). The oil painting is believed to be of the wife
of Francesco del Giocondo, thus the paintings nickname(compounding), La Gioconda.
Giocondo was a cloth merchant and in the Florentine government (borrowing), and both
he and his wife, Lisa, were art lovers(derivation). If the painting is of Lisa del Giocondo, it
is believed to have been painted around the time of the birth of her second son. The
subject is seated against a background(compounding) of mountains and rivers, the
shapes of which are echoed in the sitters (derivation) hair and clothing. Da Vinci used a
shading() technique(affixation) called sfumato(borrowing-italy), which involves the
layering of coats of paint to create depth in a work. The repetition(affixation) creates
harmony in the painting. The seated woman is smiling faintly;(affixation) many suggest
that her eyes are happier(suppletion) than her mouth, which may explain her
e n ig m at i c ( af f i xat i o n) e xp r es s i on ( af f i xat io n ) . H o we ve r , t h e p a i n t ing wa s
unfinished(affixation). According to Giorgio Vasari, who wrote in 1550, after he [Da Vinci]
had lingered over it four years, [he] left it unfinished. A receipt or indication(affixation) of
payment(affixation) for the painting has never been found. Da Vinci took the painting
with him to France in 1516, when the 65-year-old painter was invited there by King
Francis I. W hile in France, Da Vinci worked on the painting, but stopped
shortly(AFFIXATION) before his death. When Da Vinci died in France in 1519, the
painting became the property(AFFIXATION) of the king. During the reign(BORROWING-
FRENCH) of Louis XIV, the Mona Lisa was moved to Ver sailles. Napoleon had the
portrait(BORROWING-FRENCH) hung in his bedroom(COMPOUNDING). Then the
Mona Lisa was given a spot in the Louvre and became a popular work due to the
Symbolist art movement(AFFIXATION), which praised the painting for its
embodiment(AFFIXATION) of femininity(AFFIXATION). Despite her new home, the
Mona Lisas adventures were not over. In August 1911, th e portrait was
stolen(SUPPLETION). It remained lost for two years until a former Louvre
employee(AFFIXATION), Vincenzo Perugia, was arrested(SUPPLETION) for the
crime(BORROWING-LATIN). Perugia, an Italian nationalist(AFFIXATION), thought the
famous painting deserved to be in Italy. On 21 August 1911, Perugia had found himself
(COMPOUNDING, AFFIXATION)alone with the portrait in the gallery(BORROWING-
ITALY) room, took the painting off its hooks and walked out with it under his coat. He
had smuggled the painting back into Italy to sell it to an Italian museum. When the Uffizi
Gallery of Florence was approached(SUPPLETION) to buy the painting, they contacted
the Louvre. The Mona Lisa was returned to France in 1914 and Perugia was
imprisoned(SUPPLETION, AFFIXATION) for the theft, but only served a few months.
The year 1956 was not a good one for Mona Lisa. The portrait had acid thrown on it and
then a rock tossed at it, resulting in the picture having to undergo
restoration(AFFIXATION). It is believed that an earlier(suppletion) restoration(affixation)
had removed the eyebrows and eyelashes(COMPOUNDING) that once graced the sitter.
(However, it was also common in the early 16th century for women to pluck off their
eyebrows, so the Mona Lisa may never have had them.) In the 20th century, the Mona
Lisa traveled to the US, the former USSR(ACRONYM) and Japan. The painting is
probably(AFFIXATION) more famous now than ever before. The Mona Lisa has
appeared in movies, songs and books, including Dan Browns book, The Da Vinci Code,
which features(CONVERSION) the portrait and has sold more than 64 million copies.
Also, recent study of the painting has kept the Mona Lisa in the
spotlight(COMPOUNDING). It was discovered that the subject is wearing a translucent
gauze garment(BORROWING-FRENCH) called a guarnelo over her dress. The guarnelo,
as painted by Da Vinci is undetectableaffixation to the naked eye. A guarnelo was
worn by pregnant(latin) women or by those who had just given birth, which gives some
support to the theory(Greek) of the subject being Giocondo. Today, the painting is on
display in the Louvre Museum in Paris, behind bullet-proof(multiple processes) glass,
and is viewed by some six million people a year.