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Leonardo da Vinci (Vinci 1452-Amboise 1519)

A woman in a landscape c.1517-18

RCIN 912581

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This mysterious drawing may depict a scene from Dante’s Divine Comedy, in which the poet comes upon the maiden Matelda on the far bank of a stream, singing and gathering flowers. Her pointing gesture (found so often in Leonardo’s work) and direct gaze would put us in the position of Dante, as Matelda indicates her earthly paradise to us.