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The Fake and Real From Leonardo da Vinci

1. INDISPUTABLE WORKS BY THE MASTER

“Portrait of a woman (Ginevra Benci)”
1474-76
Washington , National Gallery
Although that in late 19th and early 20th century some discordant voices were heard (5) now nobody doubt of the authorship of this little jewel, appropriately called “cossa belissima (very beautiful thing)” by Vasari. First masterwork by Leonardo

“Saint Jerome”
c.1480
Roma, Pinacoteca Vaticana
Nobody have ever doubted of this unfinished work

“The adoration of the magi”
1481-82
Florencia, Uffizi
As the above, unquestionable

“The Virgin of the rocks”
1483-86
Paris , Louvre
Unquestionable work by Leonardo, with abundant documentation

“The Virgin of the rocks”
1483-86
London , National Gallery
The attribution of Leonardo, unquestionable in the 19th and early 20 th century, was questioned in the late 20th century due to the stylistic differences with the Louvre version. Nevertheless, recent in-depth studies of the work (6) have proved the authorship of Leonardo. The work was probably unfortunately repainted, and it is even possible that the two wings of the triptych were painted by a pupil, but the central panel is free of any doubts.

“The last supper”
1495-97
Milano, Convento de Santa Maria
Logically unquestionable

“Saint Anne, the Virgin, the child and Saint John”
c.1498
London , National Gallery
Another unquestionable work

“Portrait of Isabella d’Este”
c.1500
Paris , Louvre
Unfinished and in a mediocre state of preservation, however free of any doubts, with the only exception of Goldscheider (1952), who affirms that only the head is by the master

“Portrait of a woman (Gioconda, the Monna Lisa)”
1503-05
Paris , Louvre
Obviously unquestionable

“Head of a girl (La Scapigliata)”
1508
Parma , Galeria Nacionale
Few discordant voices, among them Ricci and Suida (1929). However, the mastery of the drawing and the numerous historical documents make it an unquestionable work

“Saint Anne, the Virgin and child with the lamb”
c.1510
Paris , Louvre
A never questioned masterwork, although numerous copies are known.

“Saint John the Baptist”
1513-16
Paris , Louvre
A supreme masterwork, with an astonishing technical perfection, and never discussed in a serious way, although Müller-Walde and Berenson (who later changed his opinion) considered it a work by the workshop.

The total is a dozen of works, and we can add two special cases:

“The baptism of Christ”
c.1472-75
Florencia, Uffizi
Work by Verrocchio (Leonardo’s master) but it is firmly believed by most critics that one of the angels and the landscape behind it were painted by Leonardo